News – October 30, 2016

Dodge County Lands Among Those For Sale By NRB


10/30/16 – Another 31-hundred-80 acres of public land are going up for sale. The state Natural Resources Board approved the action this week, completing a requirement from G-O-P legislators that the D-N-R sell ten-thousand acres by next summer. The mandate was part of the state budget passed in 2013, when Republicans expressed concerns about rising debt obligations from Wisconsin’s Stewardship program that borrows money to preserve outdoor lands. Of the seven-thousand acres up for sale since 2014, a D-N-R official says it arranged contracts to sell about 900 of those acres for about one-million dollars. Board chairman Terry Hilgenberg called it a “horrendous project” and thanked D-N-R staffers for identifying affected parcels. In Dodge County, there are around 55-acres of land for sale designated as “extensive wildlife habitat” while Fond du Lac County has 42 acres offered for sale.


Sturgeon Spearing License Deadline Tomorrow


10/30/16 – If you’re interested in spearing for giant sturgeon, you don’t have much time to apply. The state D-N-R says the deadline is Monday to buy licenses for next February’s spearing season on Lake Winnebago and its connected lakes up the Fox River. Almost 14-thousand people received licenses to spear last year — and 703 fish were taken, including 19 that were 100 pounds or larger. D-N-R sturgeon biologist Ryan Koenigs says spawning assessments turned up two fish longer than 80 inches, and many others at least 75 inches — and for the spearers, he calls those fish “the opportunity of a lifetime.” Next year also marks a change in the way harvest tags are handled, as spearers need to write the dates and times of the harvests on their tags — and tags must be attached if they leave the fish.


Wisconsin State Park Use Above Average


10/30/16 – Wisconsin state park use this year is on track to be higher than average, despite fee increases that were imposed to offset the withdrawal of tax support. The number of camping registrations and nights camped in 2016 to date was reportedly greater than in any year since 2008 except for last year’s record. This year, there have been nearly 160-thousand camping registrations and more than 386-thousand nights camped for state parks, recreation areas and southern forests.


Columbus HS Students Recognized For Yearbook


10/30/16 – Advisor Jolene Schwoerer and her Columbus High School student staff have received the National Yearbook Program of Excellence award for their 2015 / 2016 yearbook. Only seven other high schools in Wisconsin were recognized with this distinction. The nationwide award is designed to recognize yearbook programs that strive to create a book that improves student’s experiences by making sure all students feel included in the school community. Schwoerer and the Columbus High yearbook staff were presented with a plaque and a banner for the Program of Excellence award at this week’s school board meeting. The awards are given annually by Jostens, a nationwide provider of class jewelry, caps and gowns and yearbooks.


State Lawmakers Addressing Shortage Of Rural Doctors


10/30/16 – As state lawmakers work to address a shortage of rural doctors, Wisconsin health care institutions say they’re dealing with it. U-W Madison has had its Academy for Rural Medicine since 2007 — and the school was just awarded a four year, 675-thousand-dollar federal grant to create more residency physicians in rural areas on a rotating basis. The Medical College of Wisconsin is training rural doctors at its new campuses in Green Bay and Wausau — and the Marshfield and Monroe clinics, Aurora Health Care, and Gundersen of La Crosse are all in various stages of developing new or expanded rural residency programs. But U-W professor Bryan Crouse says future gains could be more difficult, as the state runs out of new training sites — and he tells the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, “The low hanging fruit has been picked.” Recently, Assembly Republican Ed Brooks of Reedsburg said his colleagues plan to introduce a package of bills on the subject in the next session.


BDCH Accredited By Joint Commission


10/30/16 – The Beaver Dam Community Hospital has once again been accredited by the Joint Commission. The acknowledgement comes after an intensive, three-day survey conducted at the hospital this spring that demonstrated compliance with the Commission’s national standards for health care safety and quality. The Joint Commission accredits and certifies more than 20-thousand health care organizations and programs in the United States that meet certain performance standards. For the first time, BDCH’s Hillside Manor skilled nursing facility and its Hillside Home Care and Hospice program were also accredited. Accreditation is not required for home care and hospice agencies, but hospital leadership says they felt undergoing rigorous review for safety and quality ensures the residents of the Dodge County region receive the best care possible. The accreditation process includes review of medical records and policies, staff interviews and observation of patient visits. Hillside Manor also underwent its first facility survey and had only one nursing assessment, which is considered excellent, particularly for an initial review. To prepare, weekly assessments were performed as well as mock surveys, which revealed areas for improvement and opportunities to increase efficiency.


Final Week For Beaver Dam Brush Pick-Up


10/30/16 – Beaver Dam residents are coming up on their last chance this year to take advantage of curbside brush pickup. The final pick-up for loose tree limbs and shrubbery cuttings will take place during regular garbage collections beginning on Tuesday, November 1 and continuing through Monday, November 7.  Loose tree limbs and shrubbery cuttings should be up to seven-inches in thickness and eight-feet in length.  The service will resume again in April. Items should be placed at the street edge no later than 7am on the day of collection and cannot be placed out sooner than 24 hours prior to the scheduled pick-up.  City residents are also reminded that cuttings can also be disposed of year-round at the Department of Public Works Yard Waste Drop-off Site located at 640 South Center Street, Mondays through Fridays, 7am to 3:30pm. No waste of any kind is accepted if originated from outside of the city limits or from any contractors.


Appleton’s Houdini Returns In Spirit, 90 Years After Death


Escape artist Harry Houdini, who grew up in Appleton, is being honored as the 90th anniversary of his death approaches on Halloween tomorrow. A Facebook post promotes the “official” 90th anniversary Houdini séance, to be held Monday night at Milwaukee’s Oriental Theatre — including music and a discussion about Houdini’s life. This past Wednesday, a plaque was unveiled outside his former home at the Sojourn Restaurant in New York — and the Society of American Magicians plans a séance there Monday, as the group says it will “try to reach the master of mind tricks in the spirit world.” At the plaque dedication, Houdini’s great niece Deborah Hardeen Bloom called him a “miraculous person … not just with his magic.” Many people think Houdini was born in Appleton, but the city’s History Museum says he was actually born in Budapest, Hungary — and he moved to Wisconsin when he was a toddler, as his father became Appleton’s first rabbi.