News – March 6, 2016

One Person Killed In Town of Herman Accident


3/6/16 – One person was killed in a one vehicle accident Saturday afternoon in the Town of Herman. The wreck occurred at 12:30pm on County Highway DW and Idaho Road. Dodge County Sheriff Dale Schmidt says the preliminary investigation shows that a Sports Utility Vehicle was northbound on Idaho Road and failed to stop at the stop sign at the intersection. The SUV vaulted off the roadway, struck a tree and caught fire. The driver and lone occupant was pronounced dead at the scene by the Dodge County Medical Examiner. The identity of the driver is being withheld pending notification of family.

The Wisconsin State Patrol, Allenton Fire and EMS, Dodge County Medical Examiner assisted at the scene. The crash remains under investigation by the Dodge County Crash Investigation Team.


Oconomowoc Murder Suspect Calls Prosecution Case ‘Weak’


3/6/16 – The attorney for an Oconomowoc woman says the prosecution’s case is weak.  Amy Van Wagner is accused of shooting her husband to death in their home.  She was bound over for trial Friday.  Police think she dragged Stan Van Wagner’s body to the basement where it was found.  The Van Wagners’ 16-year-old son says police are wrong because he would have heard the shots.  The defense attorney says the prosecution case lacks evidence.


Beaver Dam Council To Vote On Borrowing Plan Monday


3/6/16 – The Beaver Dam Common Council will vote Monday night on the city’s five-year Capital Improvements Plan. The CIP, as it’s called, lays out infrastructure improvement needs, street repairs and major equipment purchases over the next five years while outlining a specific borrowing plan for the current year. The city has been acting under a council-adopted policy for several years that limits borrowing to no more than $1.6 million per year. The city has no complete road reconstruction planned for the next two years. This year’s CIP includes $275-thousand dollars for the reconstruction of the Third Street parking lot following the demolition of the former senior center and the construction of a state-DNR mandated water filtration pond; South University Avenue from Stone Street to the city limits will be pulverized and repaved at a cost of $110-thousand dollars; East Burnett from North University to McKinley Street will see mill and overlay at a cost of $300-thousand dollars. City officials will also decide if they will borrow the money necessary to purchase a $75-thousnd dollar water rescue hovercraft for the fire department. The city is wanting lakefront townships to cover 25-percent of the cost of that and other equipment needs over the next two years. The fire chief says the current hovercraft has saved three lives but is 16 years old and, while currently working, is “unreliable.” The lakefront townships contend a water rescue team is the responsibility of the county. Sheriff Dale Schmidt argues that would be a waste of taxpayer dollars since a county team would duplicate services already offered in a more timely fashion by Beaver Dam.


Columbus To Address Wastewater Treatment of Phosphorous


3/6/16 – The city of Columbus is being required to significantly reduce effluent phosphorus levels from its Wastewater Treatment Plant into the Crawfish River. Mandated wastewater treatment facility upgrades are projected to cost in the range of $2-to-$6 million dollars. The city and its engineering firm are looking at way to reduce effluent phosphorus levels. New state-mandated phosphorus level requirements are being imposed throughout Columbia County, along the Crawfish River and around the state. Wisconsin municipalities facing costly phosphorus compliance changes are beginning to deal with the latest DNR and EPA phosphorus requirements. Communities like Columbus will have to determine what technology options are available to reach the new acceptable treatment levels. Other communities, like Beaver Dam, are fighting the limits. In July of 2014, the city council voted unanimously to fight the new limits and hire a law firm at a cost of up to $100-thousand dollars. Beaver Dam’s Utilities Director told the council at that time that if the city is required to reduce phosphorous, the new regulations would force the city to pay nearly $13-million dollars for upgrades to their new treatment plant along with $5-million in annual operating costs.


Beaver Dam School District Referendum Meeting Monday Night


3/6/16 – The Beaver Dam School District is holding its second community informational session related to a possible referendum Monday night. The session will include a presentation from Superintendent Steve Vessey on a recently-completed facilities study followed by a tour of the high school campus. The community listening session will be held from 6pm to 7:30pm tomorrow in the high school cafeteria.


Columbus Schools Hosting Academic Bowl


The annual Trailway’s Conference “Academic Bowl” competition will be held in Fall River Schools this year. Principal Brian Zacho said that over ten schools from the North and South divisions of the Conference will have students showing up on Tuesday, March 8th, for the academic competition.

160227Zacho (:17) out “…first section of tests.”

There will be individual student and team tests during the day-long competition for middle and high schoolers.

160227Zacho2 (:13) out cue “…awards as well.”

Trailways schools include Fall River, Deerfield, Rio, William’s Bay, Hustisford, Johnson Creek, Dodgeland, Lourdes Academy, Montello, Green Lake, Valley Christian and Oakfield.


3/6/16 – The annual Trailways Conference Academic Bowl competition will be held in Fall River schools this year. Principal Brian Zacho says that over ten schools from the north and south divisions of the conference will be showing up this Tuesday for the competition. There will be individual student and team tests during the day-long competition for middle and high schoolers. Trailways schools include Fall River, Deerfield, Rio, William’s Bay, Hustisford, Johnson Creek, Dodgeland, Lourdes Academy, Montello, Green Lake, Valley Christian and Oakfield.


Four Campbellsport Youth To Participate In Robotics Championship


3/6/16 – Four Campbellsport youth are headed to Kentucky in April to the Vex Robotics World Championships. South Eden Robotics Club members Grace Krahn, Colin Shurpit, Henry Hathaway and Peyton Feucht already qualified to compete at the upcoming national competition this spring, however the teams performances in the their last two tournaments along with their fifth place ranking in the state earned them an invitation to the World Championships.


Wisconsin Battling Super-Lice Infestation


3/6/16 – Wisconsin is one of more than two dozen states struggling with an invasion of so-called “super lice.”  The lice are resistant to over-the-counter treatments which usually work.  Doctors say the symptoms are the same as traditional lice — itching and scratching of the scalp — but these lice are much harder to get rid of.  Wisconsin doctors say prescription medication is still relatively effective.


DOT Announces Highway 151 Improvement Projects


3/6/16 – The state Department of Transportation has quite a few projects lined up on Highway 151 in Fond du Lac County this year. The big projects will be a partial cloverleaf interchange at Highway 151 and County Highway V and an overpass at Highway 151 and County Highway T. In addition, there will be intersection modifications at Highway 151 and State Highway 23. DOT officials say there will also be some sealing of road decks on area highways.


Joy Global Posts Losses


3/6/16 – A large Milwaukee firm that makes mining equipment says it lost 40-million dollars from November-through-January. That’s a year-to-year plunge of 70-million dollars for Joy Global, which had a profit of 30-million in the same quarter the previous year. C-E-O Ted Doheny says market conditions kept getting worse — and Joy Global’s customers are taking what he calls “unprecedented actions on their equipment fleets to conserve cash as commodity prices have weakened.” The company still expects a profit of up to 50-cents per share in its current fiscal year, on revenues of around two-and-one-half billion dollars.


Bureau Of Weights And Measures Inspection Report Released


3/6/16 – Wisconsinites generally got what they paid for last year at grocery stores and gas stations. The state’s Bureau of Weights-and-Measures inspected 63-hundred businesses, and found that 97-to-98 percent of gas pumps, store scales, and checkout scanners were totally accurate in 2015. The report also says consumers are confident that they’re getting honest deals at least 99-percent of the time — but the figure drops to 97-percent for product weights, and that’s two-percent less than in 2014. The state consumer protection agency says companies paid 185-thousand dollars in forfeitures last year for retail violations like misrepresenting prices, and selling products that were previously rejected for weighing less than what they claim on the labels.