American Hero’s Music Festival Begins Tonight
9/9/11 – The headliner of this weekend’s American Hero’s Music Festival in Beaver Dam was inspired to write a song after attending the funeral of a relative and a fallen Beaver Dam Marine. Joe Cantafio wrote the song “Brave Warrior” for his cousin Ryan Cantafio, who was killed in Iraq on Thanksgiving in 2004. He says he was moved by the faces of the people lining the streets of Beaver Dam during Ryan’s funeral, many of them holding American flags with tears streaming down their cheeks. Cantafio told Ryan’s father that he would make sure no one ever forgets his son. Cantafio says the first time he played “Brave Warrior” for Ryan’s dad, it was clear that Ryan was listening. He says the power to the festival grounds went out just as he began singing the first words. Ryan’s dad laughed, pointed up to the sky and said, “Ryan hated publicity.” The two-day American Hero’s Music Festival at Swan Park begins Friday night with a opening dedication ceremony at 5:30pm. The band Alexis is the first on-stage and features Ryan Cantafio’s mother, Sandy Hautamaki on lead vocals while his uncles and cousins round out the rest of the band. Oil Can Harry is on the stage at 8pm. The parade begins downtown at 11am Saturday with opening ceremonies starting at 12:30pm and that will be broadcast live on WXRO 95.3FM. Music tomorrow includes the Elwood Lee Band, Crystal Waters and Joe Cantafio’s 101st Rock Division Band. Joe Cantafio will be our guest this afternoon on WBEV’s Community Comment along with Beaver Dam Mayor Tom Kennedy representing the Exchange Club of Beaver Dam, the organization sponsoring this weekend’s American Hero’s Music Festival.
Man Dies after Suffering Apparent Medical Condition While Driving
9/9/11 – A 59-year-old man was pronounced dead at the scene yesterday after he was apparently suffering from a medical issue when he crashed his van into a pole. The crash happened around midday on Highway 33 near Linden Lane in the Town of Fox Lake. Dodge County Sheriff Todd Nehls says the man was traveling eastbound on Highway 33 when, for unknown reasons, he veered off the road, through the ditch and struck a utility pole before coming to rest in a parking lot. Nehls says first responders found the man without a pulse and were unable to revive him. Nehls says a witness noticed the man driving erratically prior to the crash, and with the medical history of the victim, they believe the death was not related to the van hitting the pole. Their investigation is ongoing.
WI Lawmakers React to Obama’s Speech
9/9/11 – Wisconsin’s federal lawmakers had mixed reactions to President Obama’s latest plan to jump-start a stagnant economy. The Democratic president asked a joint session of Congress last evening to pass a 447-billion-dollar package – about 150-billion more than what the White House first indicated. It includes deeper tax cuts for small businesses and working families – a second-round of federal spending to rebuild roads and schools – a more modern air traffic control system – money to bring back laid-off teachers and first responders – longer jobless benefits – and tax credits for firms to hire the long-term unemployed. Wisconsin Senate Republican Ron Johnson said Obama’s plan would quote, “double down on already tried-and-failed policies.” House Republican Jim Sensenbrenner of Menomonee Falls said he was encouraged that Obama was looking for “common ground” with Congress. And he hoped the president would not just “talk the talk,” but would work with lawmakers on pro-growth policies. Ashland House Republican Sean Duffy said Washington needs to “push forward” on things that both parties agree on. But Duffy said Obama still doesn’t understand that government doesn’t create jobs – and if it did, the first stimulus would have produced lower unemployment numbers. Milwaukee House Democrat Gwen Moore said majority Republicans in her chamber cannot simply rely on tax policies to create jobs. Wisconsin Senate Democrat Herb Kohl urged his colleagues to use Obama’s plan as a “springboard” to get the economy back on track. And he called on leaders of both parties to quote, “put aside their petty differences.” Obama said he would not increase the deficit, and White House said it will propose a “dollar-for-dollar” plan to pay for it.
Church Collecting Items to Help Rebuild Liberia
9/9/11 – A local church is collecting a variety of items to send overseas to an impoverished West African country. Liberia is an English-speaking nation that is in the process of recovering from a bloody civil war. Pastor Mark Molldrem of the First Lutheran Church of Beaver Dam says their relationship with Liberia began in 2006 when a parishioner was stationed there as part of a UN peacekeeping force during their first democratic elections. Molldrem says the civil war was devastating and they need a lot of help in rebuilding their country. The church is collecting school supplies, including reading books, encyclopedias, globes, computers in addition things like office and sports equipment even good condition twin beds and box springs. The items will be sent over in a cargo container later this year. They are being collected in the parking lot of the former Breuer Metal factory on North Spring Street in Beaver Dam on the second and fourth Saturday’s of September and October from 10am until noon. Collections can be dropped off beginning this Saturday.
Quad Graphics Owed Money by Company Filing for Bankruptcy
9/9/11 – Quad Graphics, which is one of the largest employers in Dodge County, is one of five companies in Wisconsin that is owed millions of dollars by the New Page paper company. State and local officials say they plan to help the company as it re-organizes its finances. The firm filed for Chapter-11 bankruptcy yesterday, with debts that well exceed its assets. Paul Jadin, the C-E-O of the state’s Economic Development Corporation, said his agency would work with New Page as it re-organizes. State Assembly Republican Scott Krug of Wisconsin Rapids said the sky is not falling – but instead quote, “The sky is opening and we may have some opportunities.” New Page is based in Ohio and operates in six states. But Wisconsin has the biggest stake in the company’s future. More than a quarter of the company’s production capacity is in Wisconsin, with over 17-hundred total jobs in Wisconsin Rapids, Stevens Point, and Biron. The company owes $1.7-million to both Quad-Graphics and Schneider National Trucking, as well as over $6-million to Omnova Solutions.
Fire at BD McDonalds
9/9/11 – The Beaver Dam Fire Department was called to a dumpster fire last night at the McDonalds on Park Avenue. Crews responded just before 4pm after a worker called 9-1-1 and were on scene for less than a half hour. Firefighters used a hose line from the truck to extinguish the flames. There were no injuries and no cause for the fire has been determined.
Woman Killed by Drunk Driver Identified
9/9/11 – A woman who died after being hit by a suspected drunk driver in Madison was identified yesterday as 61-year-old Mary Campbell. An autopsy revealed that she died from injuries suffered in the crash, which happened Wednesday at the busy corner of Highways 51 and 151 on Madison’s northeast side. Police said the 30-year-old S-U-V driver from Portage was turning left when his vehicle hit Campbell, who was trying to cross on 51. The driver was arrested for his fourth O-W-I offense, plus an added charge for having his two-year-old daughter in the vehicle at the time. But police said their request for charges could be changed, depending on the results of the autopsy. Neither the driver nor his daughter were injured.
Lawmakers Looking to Encourage Growth in Bio-Science Industry
9/9/11 – Two Republican state lawmakers say they want to encourage growth in Wisconsin’s bio-science industry. Racine Senator Van Wangaard and Brookfield Representative Dale Kooyenga are proposing a new state fund for bio-tech firms. Growing bio-tech companies would put 95-percent of their increase in payroll taxes into a fund that would cover grants-and-loans for other bio-tech firms with at least 75 employees in the state. Wangaard told the Bio-Science Vision Summit in Middleton yesterday that the bill would help the state’s bio-tech industry invest in itself. Bryan Renk, the head of a statewide group Bio-Forward, says the measure would go hand-in-
hand with efforts to provide more venture capital for start-up companies. Renk said all those pieces are needed. An aide to state Senate Democratic Leader Mark Miller says the new measure is not consistent with other proposals made by Republicans Wangaard and Kooyenga. Mike Browne said both lawmakers had co-sponsored a bill last month to make it illegal to use fetal tissue for scientific research.
UW-Madison Making Changes in Dealing with Student Drinking
9/9/11 – U-W Madison has made a big change in the way it deals with student drinking problems. Students who get alcohol-related citations, or get sent to a detox ward, must now take a short course on the risks of alcohol abuse. Tom Sieger of University Health Services says the procedure is widely used at other schools – and he calls it an effort to bring “systematic, educational approaches” to campus alcohol problems. Underage drinkers are being targeted, as well as those cited for disorderly conduct due to alcohol. They must pay 78-dollars for two group educational sessions, of 200-dollars for two personal sessions with an abuse counselor. That’s on top of the fines for the tickets they get. Sieger says up to a-thousand students each year could take part in the new program. It’s called BASICS – which stands for Brief Alcohol Screening and Intervention for College Students.
FTC Says Young People Most At Risk for Identity Theft
9/9/11 – Young people are the most likely to become victims of identity theft. The Federal Trade Commission received 25-hundred complaints of identity theft from Wisconsinites last year. And the agency says almost a quarter of complaints are from 20-to-29-year-olds, the highest of any age group. Sandy Chalmers of Wisconsin’s Consumer Protection Bureau says college students and young employees are natural targets. That’s because they do more of their business online – they’re less careful with their personal information – and they’re the least likely to get free credit reports on a regular basis. Chalmers says young people must be vigilant, and check their credit card bills for unauthorized transactions – and they should also get copies of their credit reports each year. Chalmers says identity thieves are getting more sophisticated. She said hackers recently broke into Facebook accounts and sent spyware to those lists of friends.