Labor Day Travelers Down
9/6/09 – Labor Day is a week later this year than it was last year. As a result, Triple-A says there is 15 percent fewer travelers on the roads. Despite that Wisconsin Department of Tourism Secretary Kelli Trumble doesn’t sound worried. Trumble says vacation time is something don’t give up easily these days. In anticipation of fewer travelers because of the later date, and the recession, Trumble says businesses and tourism destinations are offering some pretty good deals. Gas prices shouldn’t hold you back. The price per gallon is approximately a dollar less than this time a year ago. Triple-A Wisconsin expects about 870 thousand state residents to drive at least 50 miles, one way.
Details of Merc Incentive Package Unveiled Tuesday
9/6/09 – Fond du Lac City and County officials had planned a response to the vote of Mercury Marine’s employees union no matter what the outcome, but as it turned out the city and county’s largest employer will be staying put. The union ratified the contract. Fond du Lac County Economic Development Corporation President Brenda Hicks-Sorensen recognized the union workers for their sacrifice on wages and benefits. She thanked IAM employees for their patience and perseverance saying that they are grateful for the sacrifices they made to keep Mercury in Fond du Lac. Hicks-Sorensen also thanked the community for remaining positive and keeping the rally cry alive. Fond du Lac County Executive Al Buechel said while Mercury’s Stillwater, Oklahoma facility will be losing manufacturing jobs to Fond du Lac, it’s a loss that Fond du Lac officials couldn’t accept. Buechel says Fond du Lac simply had a lot more jobs to lose and felt they had to fight as hard as they could to keep Mercury so that Fond du Lac doesn’t become the Detroit of Wisconsin. The City and County Board’s now have to approve incentive packages for the company and details of those packages will be released Tuesday.
9/6/09 – One of the three Beaver Dam men suspected in a pair of mailbox and outhouse explosions was in court for an arraignment hearing this week (Wed). 19-year-old Stephen Peterson pleaded “not guilty” to six felony charges related to the bombings, as well as charges related to a shooting spree with a rifle. Peterson alone is accused of firing a rifle into two mobile homes but is also charged along with 20-year-old’s Kyle Livingston and Michael Peters with the bombings of a mailbox in Burnett and a port-a-potty at Lost Lake Park this past April. The trio was apprehended with the use of in-store video surveillance after allegedly purchasing the explosive components at a Beaver Dam retailer. One of the suspects also returned to the scene of the crime to survey the damage. Investigators say they used a pipe bomb and, in the case of the porta-potty, also used liquefied gas. Livingston and Peters face up to 25 years in prison while Peterson, the purported ringleader, faces a total of 105 years in prison, if convicted. Livingston pleaded “not guilty” last month at arraignment; Peters has an arraignment hearing scheduled for the end of this month.
New Phone Numbers Phased In This November
9/6/09 – New phone numbers will start to be phased in for central Wisconsin by November. The 715 area code is running out of available numbers because every one seems to have a cell phone. Fax machines and other phone devices are using up the available number. So, the 534 exchange will be created. The Wisconsin Public Service Committee approved the area code last year — along with a 274 area code from the Green Bay region. It will start to be used in spring 2012. Two-7-4 will be used in the current 920 area code region.
Oshkosh Driving School Has License Suspended
9/6/09 – A driver training school in Oshkosh has had its license suspended. That stops it from teaching new drivers until the problem with the state Department of Transportation can be resolved. Destination Driving School has lost its license for the next four months. The state of Wisconsin says the Oshkosh business failed to respond to DOT requests for information and it failed to pay its debt on time. Students who were enrolled at Destination will be allowed to finish their education at other schools.
WWII Vet Conventions Turnout Dwindling
9/6/09 – World War Two veterans say it’s getting tough to come to conventions. The National Convention of U.S. Submarine Veterans is holding a meeting in Ashwaubenon this weekend. Those veterans say the crowds are being thinned by the years. This is the 70th anniversary of the start of World War Two. In 1996 the convention drew nearly two thousand veterans. This weekend’s event has about 165 on hand. Even the youngest veterans are in their late 80s now. Most conventions for Naval veterans are held on the coasts, but this one is in Wisconsin because Manitowoc Shipbuilding Company made more than two dozen submarines for that war.
Inattentive Driving Cause of School Bus Wreck
9/6/09 – Kenosha County crash investigators say the driver of a car wasn’t paying attention when he ran into another car and a school bus Friday afternoon. Eighteen students on the bus avoided injury. Robert Petty Junior has been ticketed for inattentive driving. Sheriff’s deputies say Petty was approached three stopped vehicles — the bus, the car and a motorcycle. The motorcyclist realized Petty wasn’t going to stop in time, so he jumped off the bike and ran to the shoulder. Petty swerved to avoid the motorcycle, hitting the car and clipping the bus. Petty and an infant in his car suffered minor injuries.
Search For Possible Underway in Washington County
9/6/09 – The search has continued this weekend for a man who may have jumped into the St. Croix River. Nobody actually saw him jump in, though a wallet and some keys and other items were found on the railway bridge. Washington County authorities were told the 21 year old was thinking of jumping into the river. When they arrived at the location, he was gone. People who might be spending the holiday on the St. Croix near the Stillwater Lift Bridge are being asked to be vigilant and let authorities know if they see anything that might be relevant.
Kennedy Holds Open Door Hours Tuesday
9/6/09 – Beaver Dam Mayor Tom Kennedy will hold another one of his regular open door meetings on Tuesday. Kennedy says city residents are invited to meet with him, one-on-one, without appointment on the first and third Tuesday of every month. Kennedy says he feels it is important that constituents have the opportunity to speak with him the day after each regular meeting of the common council. While there is no meeting tomorrow because it’s Labor Day, Kennedy says he feels it is necessary to make himself available to constituents as often as possible. The meetings are held in Room 109 on the first floor of City Hall from 10am until noon. Kennedy says he also make himself available for private meetings by appointment by contacting the mayor office.
Garbage Pick-Up Delayed
9/6/09 – Garbage pick-up will be delayed this week because of the Memorial Day weekend. Waste collections by Veolia Environmental in Beaver Dam and other communities will be delayed by one day for the rest of the week. Monday’s route will be collected on Tuesday and Friday’s route will be collected on Saturday. In addition, Director of Facilities David Stoiser says the Beaver Dam Department of Public Works Garage will be closed tomorrow on Memorial Day Monday.