Government

Average increase: $8 a month
8:42 pm
Mon March 10, 2014

City Asks PSC For Water Rate Increase

The Rhinelander city council has voted 6-2 to ask state regulators for a 30 percent increase in water rates.  Officials say, if approved, it could mean about $8 more per month for the average utility user. A study found the water utility losing money, and the increase was needed to get the utility back on sound financial footing. Council member Alex Young said this past budget cycle,  the council  took money from the utilities to put into the city's general fund to help it balance...  

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500 freeze ups
8:39 pm
Mon March 10, 2014

Mayor Asks To Keep Water Running

Rhinelander utility worker recently thawing pipes along Stevens St.
Credit WXPR

  The warmer weather    Monday could lead Rhinelander residents to stop running their tap water to prevent freeze up. Mayor Dick Johns says you should still keep running your tap water. He says the surface might warm up some, but where the pipes are located is still very cold...  

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Eagle Cove Camp and Conference Center
8:33 pm
Mon March 10, 2014

Family Files Oneida County Case To U.S. Supreme Court

The family hoping to build the Eagle Cove Camp and Conference Center on Squash Lake west of Rhinelander has petitioned the U.S. Supreme Court to consider the case. The Jaros family asked Oneida county and the town of Woodboro in 2004 to construct a religious based facility on family property. The request was rejected at the town, county and Board of Adjustment level. Appeals were rejected in U.S. District Court in Madison and most recently  by the 7th Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals in Chicago. In each U.S.

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Campaigning in Northwoods
5:17 pm
Mon March 10, 2014

Richards Questions A.G.'s Office Work in Milw. Co. Probe

Jon Richards(D-Milwaukee)
Credit Wisconsin.gov

  A Democrat running for Attorney General says he would have been more aggressive in pursuing investigations into what went on in the Milwaukee County Executive's office when Scott Walker was in charge. Jon Richards of Milwaukee is a legislator and lawyer. He stopped in Rhinelander recently on a campaign swing. Richards says  Republican Attorney General  J.B.

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Discussion at Nicolet College
5:03 pm
Sun March 9, 2014

Property Tax or Sales Tax To Fund Schools?

Revenue Sec. Rick Chandler in front of Nicolet College image
Credit WXPR

Two Walker administration officials have been touring the state getting feedback on what residents would like to see  to improve the business climate and lower taxes. Lt. Governor Rebecca Kleefisch and Revenue Secretary Rick Chandler talked with Northwoods residents Friday at Nicolet College in Rhinelander. Kleefisch says property taxes paying for schools is dealt with in different ways in other states....  

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Roundtable at Nicolet College
4:42 pm
Fri March 7, 2014

Kleefisch, Chandler Talk Tax Reform In Rhinelander

Lt. Gov. Kleefisch, Revenue Sec. Chandler at Nicolet College
Credit WXPR

Two top state officials met face-to-face with local residents to talk about ways the state can lower the tax burden. A fact-finding event, both officials said that input would be part of a report they will file. Lt. Governor Rebecca Kleefisch and Revenue Secretary Rick Chandler met with business, non-profit, education and economic development representatives, among others. Chandler said Wisconsin has fallen to the tenth highest taxed state in the nation. He says the Republican administration would like tax reform to be a main component when building a better business climate...  

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Fewer Officers, Higher Spending
4:49 pm
Thu March 6, 2014

Wisconsin Spends More on Local Policing

Per capita in Wisconsin, municipal spending on policing is increasing.
Credit Edward Kimmel

Wisconsin municipalities spend more than the national average on policing, a new report finds.  The Wisconsin Taxpayers Alliance finds communities spent an average of $288 dollars per person in 2011 – the 12th highest rate in the nation. 

Stephanie Rubin, policy research analyst for the Wisconsin Taxpayers Alliance, says that spending went up more than 18 percent between 2007 and 2011. 

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Asking for back pay to 2007
3:42 pm
Thu March 6, 2014

Rhinelander School Administrator Sues School Distict

 The Rhinelander School District's Assistant Superintendent has sued the school district saying he was not compensated properly following a 2007 settlement agreement. The lawsuit was filed last Thursday in Oneida County Circuit Court.  David Wall is saying the district did not abide by the terms of the agreement by not giving him annual wage and benefits increases of 3.8 percent. The 2007 agreement with administrative members included performance increases, though the floor was set at 3.8 percent. Wall was given a new, three year contract in 2012.

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Warmer weather would help
3:35 pm
Thu March 6, 2014

Winter's Intensity Causing Shortage of Road Salt

Less salt
Credit en.wikipedia.org

The state Department of Transportation would like the local counties to cut back on the use of road salt as supplies are running low. Oneida County Highway Commissioner Freeman Bennett says the counties are contracted by the state to keep the roads clear. Wednesday, DOT officials said the long, hard winter has taken a toll on salt supplies. Bennett says they will be adjusting how much salt is applied on certain roads....  

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Senate Education Committee Hearing
3:19 pm
Wed March 5, 2014

Lawmakers to Hear Testimony on Changes to Education Standards

State lawmakers are expected to hear testimony Thursday on a bill that could spell changes for Common Core education standards. 

State Superintendent Tony Evers is appealing to parents and educators to speak out against the legislation, which would put standards in the hands of a legislative committee. 

In a video message Evers called this a Waterloo moment in Wisconsin education. 

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