News – November 29, 2017

Overturned Semi Closes Highway 73


11/29/16 – An overturned semi blocked both lanes of Highway 73 south of Randolph Monday afternoon. The accident happened at 1pm just north of County CF in the Town of Calamus. The Dodge County Sheriff’s Department says a semi-tractor with a box trailer was southbound when it hit the gravel shoulder while rounding a curve and began to slide in a counter-clockwise direction as it re-entered the highway. The tractor and trailer rolled onto the passenger side sliding south along the highway before coming to rest across both lanes of traffic. The driver, 59-year-old William J. Mason of Stevens Point, sustained minor injuries and was transported to Beaver Dam Community Hospital by Randolph EMS. The trailer was carrying appliances and did not contain any hazardous materials. Both lanes of Highway 73 were closed for nearly three-and-a-half hours while the scene was cleared.


Several Injury Accidents Reported In Dodge County Monday


11/29/16 – There were several motor vehicle accidents with injuries reported during yesterday’s inclement weather, according to the Dodge County Sheriff’s Department. One person was transported to the Beaver Dam Community Hospital following a wreck on Highway 151 and County Highway C in the Town of Trenton just after 12-noon. Less than one hour later, one person was transported following a single vehicle rollover on State Highway 73 and County Road CC in the Town of Westford. Around 3:30pm one person was transported following an accident on State Highway 175 and County Road HH in the Town of Lomira. And a seven-month old was transported following a wreck on County Road O and Highway 67 in the Town of Ashippun; the driver in that incident was cited for Failure to Yield.


Wife Of Madison Businessman Drowns In lake Mendota


11/29/16 – The wife of Madison businessman Tim Metcalfe has drowned in Lake Mendota. W-I-S-C T-V quotes a family pastor and spokesman as saying that 51-year-old Julie Metcalfe had depression, and she apparently drove her S-U-V into the lake. The Dane County medical examiner’s office says the cause of her death is listed as a drowning, with more tests underway — and Madison fire officials say they recovered Metcalfe’s body from the water, close to where her vehicle was found submerged near a boat ramp on Madison’s northwest side. Police were called just after 7:30 Monday morning, and they continue to investigate along with the medical examiner. Metcalfe’s family owns a chain of Madison area grocery stores.


Wisconsin Hand Recount Estimate Now At $3.5-Million


11/29/16 – Jill Stein has filed a lawsuit to require all 72 Wisconsin counties to recount their presidential ballots by hand. Also, the state Elections Commission now estimates it will cost almost three-point-five-million dollars to complete the recount of the state’s nearly three-million ballots — and the Green Party’s Stein and independent Rocky De La Fuente have until 4:30pm Tuesday afternoon to pay for the recount after both filed for it last Friday. Depending on when the court ruling occurs, the count is set to begin Thursday — and Elections Commission director Mike Haas says counties will need to hire thousands of temporary workers to get it done by the federal government’s deadline of December 13th. The panel agreed to set its own deadline of eight p-m on the 12th for counties to finish their canvasses, so the state can complete its own last minute paperwork on time. If it doesn’t happen, Haas says Congress may or may not decide whether Wisconsin’s ten electoral votes can be counted when the Electoral College is expected to choose President Elect Donald Trump on December 19th.


Water Levels On Beaver Dam Lake Back To Normal


11/29/16 – Water levels on Beaver Dam Lake are back to normal. Last month, were reported that water levels were at a ten-year high because of increased rains, more water coming upstream from Fox Lake and a culvert replacement project.  Lake levels are a responsibility of the city’s Wastewater Utility and Beaver Dam Director of Utilities Rob Minnema says crews started working on the replacement of the culverts under Cooper Street in October and had to limit the flow of water through the dam to bring lake levels down. At the same time, there was three inches of rain and officials in Fox Lake began releasing more water through their dam as part of a winter draw-down of Fox Lake. Minnema had to work with state and local officials to delay that draw-down until after the culverts were in place. Now, Minnema says thanks to progress with the Cooper Street project, things are starting to get back to normal. He says the culverts are in and the roads are paved though there is still apron work that needs to be done and the road will remain closed. Because the culverts are in, Minnema says he was able to open up the dam to allow that maximum flow through and begin a draw down. As of yesterday, the lake levels were down to the point that work was able to resume on Cooper Street. The Cooper Street project is slated to be completed in February but Minnema expects it to be done sooner. The high water levels have had lake front property owners struggling to remove their piers for the season and had sump pumps working overtime. Michel’s Corporation of Brownsville is handling the $500-thousand-dollar culvert replacement. The old culverts were responsible for backing up the flow of the Beaver Dam River which, during times of heavy rain, resulted in upstream flooding. Coupled with the narrow culverts that used to be under the Tower Parking lot, the bottlenecking was the primary culprit behind massive downtown flooding in 2004 and 2008.


BDUSD Chromebook Rollout Successful


11/29/16 – Beaver Dam Schools Superintendent says the recent introduction of new technology into the classroom is yielding positive results. The Beaver Dam School Board approved a $137,000 technology purchase this summer for 758 Chromebooks and accompanying management software.  The goal of the one-to-one initiative is to give every student a Chromebook for use in school and at home. The computers were given to students at the middle school two weeks into the year this semester while high school students will be see the technology next fall. The laptops and tablets that had been at the middle are being redistributed to the elementary schools. Superintendent Steve Vessey says the rollout has been a positive experience with high usage reported both in the classroom and at home. There has been low breakage and replacement rates. He says the Chromebooks have met and exceeded expectations with increased collaboration from student-to-student, teacher-to-student and student-to-world. Vessey says there have been several instances where students were home sick but able to participate in class. The Chromebook, which cost around $170 each, runs the Google platform instead of Windows and storage is cloud-based so there is no need for a hard drive.  The cost to parents for the Chromebook is $15, which covers normal wear and tear and common fixes like a cracked screen. Like a textbook, if a Chromebook is lost or destroyed the student is responsible for the $170 replacement cost. Each Chromebook also contains software that filters out questionable websites.


Beaver Dam Man Accused of Burglarizing Beaver Floral


11/29/16 – A Beaver Dam man is charged in connection with a weekend burglary at Beaver Floral. Brent Herreman allegedly broke into the North Spring Street business Friday evening. Police responding to a burglary-in-progress call reportedly witnessed the 21-year-old carrying stolen items from the scene including bracelets and a poinsettia. Herreman ran but was apprehended after a brief foot chase. He allegedly became aggressive with the arresting officer, spitting in his face, swearing and making death threats. He is charged with felony Burglary, Battery to Law Enforcement, Discharging Bodily Fluids at a Public Safety Worker and a handful of misdemeanors including Obstruction, Criminal Damage, Theft and Possession of an Illegally Obtained Prescription which carry a combined maximum of over 25 years in prison upon conviction. Herreman had cash bond set at $50-thousand dollars yesterday and a judge will decide next month if there is enough evidence to order a trial.


New Clinic In Beaver Dam Treats Addiction


11/29/16 – There is a new place to turn for people in Dodge County who are dealing with an addiction.  Aleris Healthcare recently opened a clinic in Beaver Dam.  Prior to Aleris, Dodge County Sheriff Dale Schmidt says aside from private practice doctors, the county’s Human Services and Health Department was the only specialized drug treatment provider.  Schmidt says the department’s caseload reached its maximum and expects Aleris will take some of the pressure off the department in helping those who are part of Dodge County’s growing opiate drug problem.  The clinic is located at 111 Warren Street behind the Beaver Dam Community Hospital.


Columbia, Jefferson Among Counties Eligible For Crop Aid


11/29/16 – Fruit and vegetable growers in Columbia and Jefferson counties are among those now eligible for help with crops lost due to cold weather. Governor Scott Walker has asked the U-S-D-A to approve disaster aid for after crops were lost to frost and freeze conditions. Walker says apples and other perennial crops were affected by freezing temperatures on May 13th and 14th. Walker is seeking help in ten counties where losses exceeded 30 percent for apples, asparagus, blueberries, hops, and strawberries. The 2014 federal Farm Bill allows supplemental payments for producers with uninsured losses. The aid is sought for growers in Chippewa, Columbia, Eau Claire, Jackson, Jefferson, Pierce, Polk, Sauk, Saint Croix, and Trempealeau counties.


Wisconsin Farmers Running Out Of Corn Storage Space


11/29/16 – At least some Wisconsin farmers do not have enough room to store the state’s record corn harvest. The U-S-D-A’s Agricultural Statistics Service says four percent of the state’s corn for grain was unharvested as of Sunday, with a total crop of 558-million bushels predicted — 13-percent more than last year. Wet field conditions were also said to be an issue, as 15-percent of farm fields have surplus moisture. But Wisconsin farmers are still two days ahead of last year with their fall field work, and 86-percent of it is done. Almost all of the state’s winter wheat crop has emerged from the ground, and 85-percent of it is rated good to excellent.