News – June 26, 2016

Local, Statewide Home Sales Up In May


6/26/16 – Home sales last month were up in many local counties and statewide from May of 2015.  Dodge County saw 115 home sales last month, up from 79 last May.  The median sales price dropped from $143,000 to $137,000.  In Columbia County, the 103 sales in May were up from 76 in the same month last year.  The median selling price jumped from $145,500 to $174,900.  Jefferson County’s 121 home sales last month were fifteen less than the previous May, but the median sales price increased from $161,750 to $177,000.  The 127 houses sold in Fond du Lac County in May were up from 102 twelve months prior.  The median sales price dropped $6,000 to $125,000.  Green Lake County had 17 houses sold, nine fewer than last May.  The median sales price dropped $3,000 to $110,000.  In Washington County, May-to-May home sales decreased from 218 to 208 with the median sales price falling nearly $4,000 to $191,000.  Statewide, 8,116 homes were sold last month, 300 more than the previous May.  The median sales price went from $160,000 to $165,000.


Watertown Traffic Enforcement Agreement Cancelled


6/26/16 – The Dodge County Board voted this week on who can patrol a stretch of highway in Watertown.  The Dodge County Sheriff’s Office and Watertown Police Department entered into a mutual agreement for conducting traffic control on a stretch of Highway 16 when a bypass was constructed in 2002.  It gave the Watertown Police Department the right to conduct traffic enforcement on Highway 16 between Highway 26 and the county line under the jurisdiction of the sheriff’s office.  Sheriff Dale Schmidt says the agreement was hardly used.  Watertown Police Department can still conduct traffic enforcements on parts of that highway that have been annexed by the city.  Schmidt says this is the only agreement his office had in the county.


DCSO: Stay Safe On The Roads This Summer


6/26/16 – Dodge County residents are urged to be safe on the roads this summer.  Sheriff Dale Schmidt says drivers need to be on the lookout for motorcycles in addition to other cars.  He says his office responds to at least one crash per summer where a vehicle struck a motorcycle at an intersection because the car’s driver was not paying attention to the bike.  Schmidt also encourages pedestrians to pay attention to their surroundings at all times.  Even if someone is on the sidewalk, the sheriff says they should be on the lookout for cars that could jump the curb.  On streets without sidewalks, Schmidt says pedestrians need to walk against traffic.  He says it is also important to only cross streets at a designated cross-walk.  When it comes to riding a bike, Schmidt says hand signals should be used when turning and traffic signs should be obeyed.  Bike riders should be on the right side of the street, going with traffic.  According to the sheriff, riders should stay as far to the right as possible to keep from blocking approaching traffic.


Groundbreaking Planned For Dodge County Dog Park


6/26/16 – Ground will be broken tomorrow on a new dog park coming to Dodge County.  The Dodge County Humane Society is holding a ceremony at 10:30 am Monday to kick off construction of the Randy C.  Fiegel Dog Park.  The 2.5-acre park will be located behind the Humane Society’s building on Highway 26 in Juneau.  It will include separate areas for large and small dogs as well as agility equipment, walking paths, and picnic shelters.  Board President Ryan Vossekuil says the park could be open by late summer.


Annual Dairy Brunch Today In Beaver Dam


6/26/16 – The annual Dodge County Dairy Brunch is being held in Beaver Dam today.  The Pieper Farm, located at W7552 Highway C, is hosting the event.  A variety of dairy related foods are on the menu: including scrambled eggs with ham and cheese, pancakes, assorted cheeses, milk, juice, and ice cream sundaes.  Train barrel rides along with 4-H and FFA activities are also offered.  The event runs from 9 am to 12:30 pm.  Tickets are $7 for ages 12 and up, $3 for ages 5-11.  Free admission for those 4 and under.


Wisconsin Milk Production On The Rise


6/26/16 – Wisconsin dairy cows are busier than most. Milk production in the Badger State grew by 4.2% last month compared to the previous May — and that’s the fourth largest increase among the 23 major dairy states. The National Ag Statistics Service says Wisconsin made 2,635,000 pounds of milk last month, 107,000 pounds more than in May of 2015. The state is still the nation’s number two milk producer, well behind first place California even though the Golden State had a 2.8% drop in its milk output from the previous year. Wisconsin’s increase was more than three times the national rise of one point 2%.


Dropping Salaries For Wisconsin Teachers


6/26/16 – Wisconsin’s public school teachers are making $2,000 less per year on average since Act 10 was put into place to restrict collective bargaining rights.  The estimate comes from a new study by the conservative Wisconsin Institute for Law and Liberty, which notes the pay cut, is “statistically significant.”  While pay has gone down, the average years of experience for teachers is also slightly lower since Act 10 was signed. Researchers say new teachers making lower starting salaries likely impacted the overall average.


Hustisford Location Now DMV Agent


6/26/16 – There is a new registered DMV agent in Dodge County.  United Cooperative has announced their Hustisford Cenex convenience store is open for people to renew and receive their annual license plate stickers.  The service is available seven days a week.  The store is located at 326 West Juneau Street.


Wisconsin Stays Level On Childhood Well-Being


6/26/16 -Wisconsin remains the 13th best state for children’s well-being. That’s unchanged for the third straight year in the annual Kids Count survey released by the Annie E. Casey Foundation. The report compares states on four major criteria — and it ranks Wisconsin seventh for education, 13th for children’s economic well-being, 18th for family and community backing, and 29th for health factors. There are 16 criteria in all — and the report says Wisconsin has made big improvements in education and health factors since 2008, before the Great Recession began in earnest. The survey shows steady or declining numbers for economic, community, and family support — and it reveals that Hispanic and African American youngsters are not doing nearly as well as whites.


Fall River Student Takes Office At Mock Government Conference


6/26/16 – A Fall River High School student was elected to office at a recent mock government program.  Adriahna Pecore served as a state representative at the American Legion Auxiliary’s Badger Girls State conference.  The annual women’s leadership conference is held each year for high school juniors interested in pursuing a career in business or politics.  The week-long event allows students to see how government works by creating 14 cities, seven counties, and one state.  At each level, there are elections, political parties, and law-making.  This year’s event was held in Oshkosh.


Wisconsin Pipeline Shut Down Indefinitely


6/26/16 -The only pipeline that delivers gasoline to Green Bay and northeast Wisconsin is shut down indefinitely. The West Shore Pipeline Company says it will consider rebuilding the 55-year-old line between Milwaukee and Green Bay. For now, it will look for alternative ways to provide fuel to northeast Wisconsin. The pipeline has been down since March 10th for repairs after it had a breakdown near Jackson, close to where about two dozen areas of pipe had to be fixed as part of a large spill three years ago. Since May, Governor Scott Walker has declared energy emergencies which allow fuel truck drivers to work more hours to deliver gas by truck to the Green Bay region. Also, the state allowed overweight loads on tanker trucks around the Memorial Day weekend, as an extra step in preventing fuel shortages.


Company Says Statewide Power Supply In Good Shape


6/26/16 – A company that monitors and moves electricity around the Midwest says Wisconsin’s power supplies should be in good shape for at least the next five years. However, the Midcontinent Independent System Operator says the amount of additional power generated in Wisconsin will drop noticeably by 2021. The firm keeps the electric flow going from Manitoba down through the U-S midsection to Louisiana — and it predicts that the region’s power surplus could reach two point seven gigawatts by next year, falling by two thirds in the next five years with closings of several nuclear and coal fired power plants. Parts of Michigan and Missouri are among those expected to feel power shortages as early as next year. But analysts from the Citizens Utility Board and Renew Wisconsin say the state has more generating capacity than it needs for now, with a growing market for renewable energy throughout the Midwest.


Local 4-H Group Holding Fundraiser In Fox Lake Today


6/26/16 – A local 4-H group is having an ice cream social in Fox Lake today.  The Trenton Hilites are raising money to fund an upcoming camping trip and donate to a couple local causes.  The event runs from 3 pm to 8 pm at the SAGES school in Fox Lake.  Tickets are available at the door.  There will be a silent auction and food for sale.