Wisconsin DOT

Reaction continues to come in following the retirement  announcement of DOT Secretary Mark Gottlieb and the naming of former Superior Mayor Dave Ross as the new Secretary. Ross has lead the state Department of Safety and Professional Services.

Republican State Senator Tom Tiffany of Hazelhurst thinks Ross is qualified to lead the large agency with his business and government experience....

Oneida County Sheriff's Department

The Civil Service Commission has forwarded a dismissal recommendation against an Oneida County Sheriff's Department investigator charged with allegedly taking money from a fund only she controlled.

The Commission forwarded charges of dismissal against 40 year old Sara Welcenbach.

The Commission cites eight grounds for dismissal, including alleged willful neglect of duty, making a false official statement or entry in official records, and general inefficiency and incompetency.

The name of the person killed in a Monday snowmobile crash in Vilas county has been released.

The Sheriff's Department reports the person killed was 63 year old David Orme of East Moline, Illinois.

Sheriff Joe Fath says they received a call shortly before 8:30 p.m. of a crash on trail 6 along Vandercook Road in Arbor Vitae.

Fath says the driver was operating along a marked snowmobile trail, following other snowmobiles in a group. He struck a tree and was pronounced dead at the scene.

Vilas County Swears In New District Attorney

Dec 28, 2016

Vilas County has a new district attorney as Martha Milanowski was administered the oath of office by Judge Neal "Chip" Nielsen, III on Tuesday.

Milanowski, who served 16 years as the county corporation counsel, replaces Al Moustakis who was DA for 23 years and did not seek reelection.

Milanowski thanked many persons present for support and encouragement; especially her husband Gary, their three children, and her parents who braved the weather to see her take her next step in her legal career.

This winter's first snowmobile fatality in the Northwoods has been reported in Vilas county.

The Vilas County Sheriff's office reports a 63 year old man from East Moline, Illinois crashed in the town of Arbor Vitae Monday night.

Sheriff Joe Fath says they received a call shortly before 8:30 p.m. of a crash on trail 6 along Vandercook Road.

Fath says the driver was operating along a marked snowmobile trail, following other snowmobiles in a group. He struck a tree and was pronounced dead at the scene.

Wikimedia Commons

The City of Rhinelander is offering no interest home repair loans to qualified property owners.

The loans are through the Community Development Block Grant program.

MSA Professional Services is administering the home loan program. Spokesperson Kari Justmann says if a property owner is income qualified, they will inspect the house, and anything that fails is eligible for the zero interest loans..

Calico Spanish

A fifth of 11th graders (Class of 2017) tested last March at Lakeland Union High School were fully ready for college-level coursework, according to results of the ACT test they took. The core subject areas tested were English, mathematics, reading, and science.

LUHS Board Delays Action On Kollege Town Sports Contract

Dec 20, 2016

Lakeland Union High School Board members Monday, Dec. 19th balked at language requirements of a proposed agreement with Kollege Town Sports that would designate the Minocqua 9th-12th grade school as an Under Armour school.

Northland Pines Asks State For Earlier Start Date

Dec 20, 2016
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Pointing to local control, the Northland Pines school board Monday night approved sending a resolution to the Wisconsin Dept. of Public Instruction (DPI) "officially requesting approval to commence the school term prior to Sept. 1 . . . in determining the school calendar."

District administrator Mike Richie told the board he was not ready to recommend going against the state law that mandates local school districts to start classes on Sept. 1 or later. "I'm not willing to put the district in jeopardy that we would be breaking the law," Richie said.

State Senator Janet Bewley says a change implemented by the Walker Administration will hurt rural seasonal workers and businesses who traditionally use unemployment when seasonal work ends.

Bewley says many jobs in rural Wisconsin are seasonal...


Over the next 18 months, all 3,100 public housing agencies in the U.S. will be required to go smoke-free.

U.S. Housing and Urban Development released new rules late last month.

Oneida County Community Health Specialist Corie Zelazoski says the rule requires agencies enact smoke-free policies applying to all living units, indoor common areas, offices and within 25 feet of buildings...

Autopsy Shows Beckman Strangled

Dec 16, 2016
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The autopsy report has been released for Luann Beckman, 47, of Phelps found dead last May 17 according to Vilas County Sheriff Joe Fath.

"The official autopsy report says that Beckman died of asphixyia due to ligature strangulation and smothering," Fath said. "In other words there was an item or items around her neck that led to her death."

The Sheriff's department continues to work the case and has involved the FBI and state forensic experts and have talked to about 15 persons.

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A former Prentice contract rural route mail carrier has entered a guilty plea to one count of mail theft.

The U.S. Attorney for the Western District of Wisconsin says 47 year old Belinda Chizek pleaded guilty Thursday in federal court in Madison.

Last September , a federal grand jury in Madison returned a one-count indictment against Chizek.

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Northland Pines School District in Eagle River will likely welcome international students on campus beginning next fall.

The Wisconsin International Student Program (WISP) is a partnership between Northland Pines School District, Nicolet College and the University of Wisconsin System.

Forest County Potawatomi Community

The Forest County Potawatomi Community and the U.S. Forest Service have signed a long-negotiated agreement to allow for more cooperation and government-to-government communication between the two parties. Both parties said the negotiations that concluded Wednesday with a signed agreement had been coming for two decades.