Government

Brown Street
9:54 am
Tue June 11, 2013

Consultant Hired To Look At Rhinelander DT Study

Brown Street
Credit Natalie Jablonski

The Rhinelander city council has hired a firm to do a downtown economic development and Brown Street Streetscaping study at a cost of $32,000.


The council hired Vierbicher Associates of Reedsburg to do the work.


Council member Mark Pelletier said the consultant will look at a number of aspects of re-doing Brown Street...


"....this is just the first step. The $32,000...we're looking at as $5,000 stormwater, $5,000 water, $5,000 sewer and $15,000 grant and grant application..."

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Council says could hurt growth
9:44 am
Tue June 11, 2013

Rhinelander Council Opposes State Zoning Change

The Rhinelander city council Monday night sent a message to the Wisconsin legislature about giving state towns more leverage.


Bills in the legislature would put a crimp on municipalities' ability to annex property. It's part of changing rules concerning county development plans. A plan currently must be adopted by a city or village. The new legislation would change that. But the bills also give more power to towns to fight off annexation by cities as outlined by council member Alex Young...

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Local Politics
2:58 pm
Fri June 7, 2013

Cloverland Debates Sex Offender Ordinance

Cloverland residents expressed strong opinions about a proposed ordinance regulating where sex offenders can live.
Credit Natalie Jablonski / WXPR News

The Vilas County town of Cloverland’s planning commission held a public hearing Thursday night on a proposed ordinance to regulate where state officials house sexual predators.  About two dozen people attended, with many expressing strong opinions on the issue.

The ordinance was prompted by the placement last year of 37-year-old Steven Burgess in a neighborhood on Chicaree Lane where families with young children live.  Burgess, from Lac du Flambeau, served 17 years in prison for attempted sexual abuse of a child. And his neighbors want him moved.

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School Funding
4:19 pm
Wed June 5, 2013

Budget Proposal Diverts Timber Money to K-12 Schools

The Chequamegon-Nicolet National Forest spans over 1.5 million acres in northern Wisconsin.
Credit US Forest Service

Some Northwoods school districts could be getting a financial boost next year, thanks to a proposal included the state budget.

The version of the budget passed by the joint finance committee would send 25 percent of timber sales from the Chequamegon-Nicolet National Forest to local schools.  School districts would receive different amounts based on how much forest acreage falls within their district.  Republican State Representative Rob Swearingin describes the proposal as a shot in the arm for rural schools.

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Local Schools
5:23 pm
Tue June 4, 2013

Swisher to Leave School District

The Rhinelander School District is looking for a new Community Education Coordinator.  Kim Swisher announced her resignation today.  She’s headed to a brand new communications position with the Lac du Flambeau Band of Lake Superior Chippewa.   

“It was just too exciting to pass up.  I have greatly enjoyed my work with the school district and have learned a great deal serving our students and our community.  And this was just something too exciting and too much of an opportunity to walk away from.” 

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Revitalizing Downtown
4:45 pm
Mon June 3, 2013

Rhinelander Looking Into Downtown Improvements

A committee of city leaders in Rhinelander has selected a company to outline an economic development initiative for downtown.  The plan from Vierbicher Associates will also look into giving Brown Street a bit of a facelift, by conducting a streetscape study.

Rhinelander City Administrator Blaine Oborn says doing a streetscape…is kind of like landscaping, for a downtown sidewalk. 

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Town wants stricter limits on placements
4:00 am
Sat June 1, 2013

Cloverland To Host Hearing On Sex Offender Ordinance

A public hearing has been called for Thursday night by the Vilas county town of Cloverland to talk about a proposed sex offender placement ordinance.


Last year a convicted sex offender was placed on Chickaree Lake Road. Local residents were upset with the placement. Cloverland town chair Scott Maciosek says the town wants to spell out what they want...



"....we're trying to protect the kids in our town plus be able to stop them from just being able to drop somebody in here without saying anything to anybody...."

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Longtime Northwoods resident
4:52 pm
Fri May 31, 2013

New OC Youth Leader Named

Credit UW Extension

Oneida County UW-Extension has a new Youth Development agent.


Lynn Feldman has joined Extension after working as an advocate for Tri-County Council on Domestic Violence and Sexual Assault based in Rhinelander. Feldman has been a teacher and worked for 14 years in the family owned grocery business in Three Lakes.


Among Feldman's duties will be Teen Court, Teens Active in Government, 4-H, and assessing the needs of Oneida county young people.


She succeeds Jim Winkler, who retired.

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Call to action
4:37 pm
Thu May 30, 2013

District Website Provides School Funding Info

Rhinelander school district officials have developed a web page so residents concerned about school funding can keep up to date.  Rural school districts are feeling a financial squeeze as many districts have fewer students and are getting less financial aid, but still required to follow mandates.

The legislature's budget-writing group, the Joint Finance Committee, is looking at school funding at this time.

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Mole Lake Stabbing
4:24 pm
Thu May 30, 2013

Forest Co. Defendant Enters Plea

Defendant Trevor Lenz was sentenced Thursday in Forest County court.
Credit Natalie Jablonski / WXPR News

One of six young men arrested for a February, 2012 incident where a Wausau man was stabbed  at a Mole Lake residence has been sentenced to prison.

21-year-old Trevor Lenz of Milwaukee accepted a plea bargain in Forest County court. Lenz had been charged with six counts, including party to the crime of attempted first-degree homicide. District Attorney Charles Siminio  said Lenz was less involved in the incident than the other members of the Latin Kings gang.

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