“News – September 14, 2009”

Three Injured in Afternoon Accident


9/14/09 – Three people were injured including one seriously yesterday afternoon in the town of Rubicon.  The Dodge County Sheriff’s Department says the car carrying 26-year-old Matthew Riley, 24-year-old Daniel Regan, and 17-year-old Alexandria Hughes rolled over on Highway 60 near County Trunk P.  The two men were taken to Aurora Medical Center in Hartford while Hughes was taken by Flight for Life to another hospital.  There is no word on what caused the accident.


Two Killed in Weekend Accidents


9/14/09 – Traffic crashes claimed a couple lives in the area over the weekend. Washington County Sheriff’s officials say a 20-year-old Town of Addison man was killed when his car went off a road Saturday night and hit a tree. He died at the scene. A woman died from injuries she suffered in a Sheboygan County accident yesterday afternoon. She and the driver of the motorcycle they were on were thrown from it when a car turned in front of them on Highway 57 in the Town of Sherman yesterday afternoon. Both were taken to St. Mary’s Hospital in Mequon where she died. (KFIZ)


Merc President to Visit Oklahoma Plant


9/14/09 – While close to 850 workers in Fond du Lac will keep their jobs at Mercury Marine, around 400 employees at their facility in Oklahoma will be losing theirs.  That’s why Merc President Mark Schwabero will be heading to Stillwater this week to speak with workers and explain the events of the past few weeks.  Jobs from the Stillwater plant will begin moving to Fond du Lac next month and all 400 jobs will be in Wisconsin within the next year or so.  As for the workers that continue to be laid off in Fond du Lac, Mercury officials say the economy will determine when they’ll be called back.


Referendum on the Ballot in Jefferson County


9/14/09 – Residents in Jefferson County will head to the polls tomorrow to vote on a referendum that would raise their taxes over the next four years to fund the Countryside Home assisted living facility.  The county is facing a three-point-five-million-dollar deficit and officials say expenses are exceeding revenues.  If the referendum passes the public’s taxes would increase by sixteen-point-five-percent over the next four years and all the extra tax money would be used to fund the facility.  Since they are not mandated to run the facility, a no vote would force the county to put the six-year-old building up for sale.  Once sold, the home would be run through the private sector and county residents would no longer be paying for its operation. Polls will be open from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m. tomorrow.


Senate Set to Vote on Bill Regulating Windmill Standards


9/14/09 – The Wisconsin Senate is expected to vote tomorrow on a bill to create statewide standards for the placement of high-tech windmills.  A similar measure is pending in the Assembly.  Sponsors say it’s needed because local governments have restricted the wind farms so much, it’s hurting the development of alternative energy – and Wisconsin wind-turbine makers are selling virtually all their products outside the Badger State.  Supporters also say the measure would create jobs, and help Wisconsin meet a state law to have at least 10-percent of its electricity come from renewable sources by 2015.  But opponents of the statewide windmill standards say it takes away local control, and ignores the effects on those who live near them.


Legislative Leaders Looking to Create Jobs


9/14/09 – Wisconsin legislative leaders say one of their main goals this fall is to help create jobs – and both houses are just now starting to work on separate plans.  Majority Assembly Democrats say they’ll announce a bi-partisan panel this month which will meet with business leaders to get ideas.  Senate Democrats say they’re working on their own plan to boost jobs, based on what has worked in the past.  One of the few definitive ideas was announced last week by Assembly Democrats.  They want to attract both state-and-federal funds to create more job-training classes at technical colleges, and give financial aid.  The plan would be funded by a one-percent increase in the state income tax for those making at least a million-dollars a year.  Republicans immediately criticized the idea, saying Democrats have hurt the economy by raising billions in taxes.


Tax Collections Down in Wisconsin


9/14/09 – For the first time in its history, sales tax collections in Wisconsin went down in the last fiscal year.  The state collected four-point-one-billion dollars on consumer purchases in the fiscal year ending June 30th.  That’s down four-point-three percent from the year before.  State analysts say personal incomes will drop one-percent this year, but will rise by over two-and-a-half percent in 2010.  Officials and retail analysts expect sales to go up slightly this fall.  But those numbers will be compared to dismal holiday sales from a year ago – and stores expect to have lower inventories again this season.


H1N1 Flu Summit in Milwaukee Tomorrow


9/14/09 – A business summit on the H-1-N-1 swine flu will be held tomorrow in Milwaukee.  Mayor Tom Barrett’s office and the local Association of Commerce are sponsoring the event – and the mayor is urging all businesses to send somebody.  The meeting will explain the risks of getting the H-1-N-1 flu virus – as well as the best ways to treat the disease and reduce the spread of it.  Admission is free, but companies must sign up in advance.  Wisconsin has over 46-hundred confirmed flu cases this year, and eight deaths.  Milwaukee County has 26-hundred of those cases, and four deaths.