Government

Nearly 3X legal limit
3:27 pm
Wed February 11, 2015

Most Snowmobile Fatalities Found High Level Of Alcohol Use

Credit commons.wikimedia.org

Wisconsin's death total so far this snowmobile season has been half of last year's total, but  even with the lower numbers, a DNR official says the cause often is too much alcohol. Most of the snowmobile drivers killed this winter have had blood alcohol levels nearly 3 times the legal level.

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Wisconsin Taxpayers Alliance
3:15 pm
Wed February 11, 2015

Will More State Technical College Money Mean Less Local Governance?

Nicolet Area Technical College
Credit Nicolet Area Technical College

The Wisconsin Taxpayer's Alliance reports a dramatic shift in how Wisconsin's technical colleges are funded. The legislature moved more than $400 million into the technical college system this school year. It also could mean a  governance shift to more state control.

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Veterans show support
4:36 pm
Tue February 10, 2015

No Further Sanctions For OC Veteran's Service Officer

Walters(near right) and her attorney Brian Bennett at the January hearing
Credit WXPR

A committee given the responsibility to consider discipline for Oneida County's Veteran's Services Officer has recommended no further discipline.

A day-long evidentiary hearing was held last month on allegations against Tammy Walters. When the 8 allegations were heard, the county board voted two of them worth possible future discipline and dismissed the other 6. One was improperly giving a security card to a volunteer for emergency duty who at one time was an employee of the office, and the other  allegation was using profanity in public.

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April advisory referendum in Rhinelander
7:44 pm
Mon February 9, 2015

Businesses To Get Look At Proposed Premier Resort Tax

Credit en.wikipedia.org

Next April, Rhinelander voters will see an advisory referendum  whether the city should petition the legislature to become the next community with a Premier Resort Area Tax.

The question asks whether the city should levy one-half cent on a dollar sales tax on tourist-related  items. The money raised could only be used to upgrade infrastructure, namely city streets. The city could like to fix Lincoln Street from Oneida to Eisenhower Parkway, Stevens Street, Boyce Drive and Oneida Avenue, totaling some $2 million dollars.

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Reported missing last week
6:31 am
Mon February 9, 2015

Conover Man's Body Found Saturday

A man missing since last Tuesday in northern Wisconsin was found dead over the weekend.  Vilas County officials said Michael Larson's exposure to the cold may have been a factor.  An autopsy is planned to determine how the 29-year-old Conover man died.  After Larson disappeared, friends and relatives feared he might be in danger -- as he was possibly under the influence of drugs and could not care for himself.  Vilas County sheriff's investigators said they found Larson's body on Saturday afternoon during a ground search of a wooded area hear his home.

See police work up close
10:01 pm
Sun February 8, 2015

Citizens Police Academy Again Opened By Rhinelander PD

Credit Rhinelander Police Dept.

The Rhinelander Police Department is again offering a chance for 12 participants to see the life of a police officer up close.

The 8th annual Citizen's Police Academy begins March 5 and runs for eight weeks.
As Police Chief Michael Steffes says most participants don't become police officers, but they discover the background an officer has to know to be successful...

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Several county forest parcels
3:08 pm
Sun February 8, 2015

Vilas Land Sale Proposal Draws Opposition

Credit commons.wikimedia.org

The Partners In Forestry Cooperative based in Vilas county is challenging an effort to sell off county-owned tracks of land. A proposal by county board member and realtor Jerry Burkett  is to sell many parcels that he said were odds and ends of county land.

In an editorial, Joe Hovel from Conover says  the  proposal  could end up damaging the county forest and possibly costing jobs. In the section called large parcels, Hovel says much of that land under review abuts other county land, and selling it could speed the fragmentation of the forest...

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More than 50 percent of the value
8:34 am
Sat February 7, 2015

Petitioners Get Enough Value To Challenge BID District

Credit WXPR

A petition passed by some Rhinelander businesses members has received enough support to ask the city to dissolve the Business Improvement District.

A  BID district enables municipal property owners to tax themselves a little more and use the money to make improvements. To end a BID, property owners have to show that owners with more than 50 percent of the valuation want the BID district dissolved. That happened late last week, when Rhinelander business owner and petition starter Jerry Shidell presented the needed signatures to city government.

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Missing since Feb. 3
7:27 am
Sat February 7, 2015

Vilas Sheriff Asks Help To Locate Missing Man

Michael Neal Larson
Credit Vilas County Sheriff's Department

The Vilas County Sheriff's Department is asking the public's help to find a man missing since last Tuesday.

29 year old Micahel Neal Larson of Conover was last seen February 3 wearing blue jeans, and black jacket and black hat.

If you have any information you're asked to contact the sheriff's department at 715-479-4441.

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Changing Natural Resources Management
4:58 pm
Thu February 5, 2015

Walker's Budget Would Freeze Stewardship Program, Weaken Natural Resources Board

Environmental groups are among those reacting to Governor Scott Walker’s proposed changes to the DNR Stewardship Program.

Knowles-Nelson Stewardship funds are borrowed to purchase land for conservation and public use. 

Walker wants to freeze the program.  Instead, the state’s borrowing power will go into the transportation fund.

Wisconsin League of Conservation Voters Executive Director Kerry Schuman thinks that’s a mistake.  She says the state’s ability purchase land for conservation is a huge value to the public.    

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