Business & Industry

Business news

A meeting is planned in April between senior representatives of Canadian National railroad and the Northwoods Rail Transit Commission.

The Commission involves 13 counties in northeastern Wisconsin and seven counties in the U.P. They have been meeting regularly to see if freight rail service can continue in the region. Canadian National is the main freight rail server in the region. There have been rumblings from the rail company about service cutbacks.

Enplanements at the Rhinelander-Oneida County Airport last year were nearly the same number as the year before. Airport Director Joe Brauer says the number of passengers were down about 25 from the year before. He says they are limited by the number of flights they have...

".....we have, basically, our 100 seats a day. There are only so many people we can get on and with no least we're glad it's staying pretty steady...."

Caterpillar Inc has confirmed they will close its forest products facility in Prentice and move production to existing Caterpillar facilities in LaGrange, Georgia, and Victoria, Texas.

The company issued a statement on its reorganization today.

The transition will impact approximately 220 positions in Prentice. Those positions include office and production employees as well as agency workers.

Aspirus and WPS Health Solutions announced the formation of a new health insurance company in north-central Wisconsin.

Called Aspirus Arise, the company will begin marketing individual marketplace, small and large group and self-funded plans in 16 counties in this region. A holding company owned equally by Aspirus and WPS will provide governance of the new company.

President and CEO of Aspirus Arise Brett Davis says the goal is to provide an affordable healthcare option..


Strongest Wisconsin Home Sales Since 2005

Jan 19, 2016

  The Wisconsin Realtors Association reports more homes were sold in Wisconsin in 2015 than any year since 2005.  According to the year-end report, the 76,693 homes that closed 2015 topped the 68,857 sold in 2014. That’s about 8,000 shy of the homes sold pre-recession. Economist David Clark says the strong housing market was a trend across the whole state with a 10 to 12 percent sale increase in all of the six regions.

The Oneida County Tourism Council has a contest going to see if they can get more visitors here during our shortened winter season. Called the "Winter Wish List Sweepstakes", the contest is sponsored by the nine communities of Oneida county says Council spokesperson Kari Zambon...

Eagle Waters Resort: A Northwoods Testament

Jan 5, 2016
Eagle Waters Resort

As Snow Piles Up, Don't Damage Your Gas Meter

Dec 30, 2015

Wisconsin Public Service is asking residents to go clear out the snow from around their furnace vents and gas meters.

Spokesperson Lisa Prunty says you need to keep the vents for your furnace, your fireplace and your dryer all clear of obstructions.

"If those get blocked, they could cause an issue with carbon monoxide levels in the home which can be deadly and want to go out with a broom or some type of brush and brush it off, and shovel gently around that area so that you're not hitting that meter."

An economist thinks there won't be much impact on housing after the Federal Reserve recently raised short-term interest rates.

The "Fed" raised federal funds rates for the first time since the 'Great Recession' hit in 2007. Marquette University professor David Clark works with the Wisconsin Realtors Association. While the rate was an increase, he says the rates had been so low for so long, it shouldn't have a harsh impact on mortgage rates...

Recently the Vilas County Amateur Radio Club activated their first radio repeater using tower space provided by Ministry Eagle River Memorial Hospital.

Hospital spokesperson Mark Dascalos says the hospital was glad to help the ham operators...

" in the Northwoods we have difficulty with cell signals and probably equal-wise with radio signals and it was an opportunity to use our tall antenna at the hospital to install a repeater that would enhance(the club's) abilities in a ham radio aspect to be able to communicate with other members...."

Black's Cliff Resort: A Century Old Northwoods Tale

Dec 22, 2015
Miranda Vander Leest

The Langlade County Humane Society has picked up a $35,000 grant from Petco Foundation to help improve the group's shelter.

President of the Langlade County Humane Society Board, Bob Zoretich says the grant will help the animals...

"....when volunteers and staff work so hard to take care of the animals for our county and the Northwoods, to be rewarded for all that hard work...."

Northwoods residents want more high-speed internet service, but most aren't likely to move to get it.

Executive Director for the Regional Econcomic Development Corporation Grow North is Angi Schreiber. Earlier this year, they surveyed the town of Hiles in Forest county, Three Lakes in Oneida county, Florence, and the towns of Presque Isle, Manitowish Waters and Boulder Junction in Vilas county. Schreiber says they had a very high return rate of 20 percent. She says a majority of residents will pay more to get better service...

Next we begin a semi-regular chat with folks from the Wisconsin Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection about consumer issues.

The first installment has WXPR's Ken Krall talking with Frank Frasetto, the Administrator for the Division of Consumer Protection talking about holiday scams, including the popular gift card scam...