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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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Surveying Public Perceptions
3:00 pm
Sun March 9, 2014

No More Lead Fishing Tackle On Three Vilas Lakes

Lead fishing tackle will no longer be allowed on Pallette Lake and two others.
Credit Joshua Mayer / http://www.flickr.com/photos/wackybadger/7967970190/sizes/m/

Lead fishing tackle won’t be allowed on three lakes in Vilas County.  Starting April 1st, the DNR is prohibiting any tackle containing lead on Escanaba, Nebish and Pallette lakes.   All three are research lakes in the Northern Highland American Legion state forest.

DNR fisheries research scientist Greg Sass is based at the Escanaba Research Station in Boulder Junction.  He says small pieces of lead like split shot and jig head can be harmful to wildlife like loons. 

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Six Mile Commute
4:00 am
Sat March 8, 2014

The Answer Is to Just Keep Pedaling

Rich Sweet bikes six miles to work each day, rain, shine or snow.
Credit Natalie Jablonski / WXPR News

With winter still holding the Northwoods in its icy grip, most of us try to avoid going out in the cold for longer than we have to.  So you might be surprised to find that one commuter relies on his bicycle to get to work all winter long, even refusing offers of car rides and choosing instead to brave the icy streets of Stevens Point.

It’s 7 a.m. on a clear morning in March, and 20 degrees below zero outside.  Rich Sweet is in his kitchen, in the process of what he calls “gearing up.”

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Daylight Savings Time
4:51 pm
Fri March 7, 2014

Spring Forward This Sunday

Spring forward this Sunday
Credit commons.wikimedia.org

  Daylight saving time  begins at 2 a.m. this  Sunday morning. While it's a time when we annually lose an hour of sleep, a Wisconsin Emergency Government official says it's also a time to update devices that could save your life.Todd Pritchard says the first thing to check are the batteries in your smoke detectors... 

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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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Predators and Prey
10:23 am
Fri March 7, 2014

Wildlife Matters: Wolves, Deer, and a Balanced Ecosystem

Wolves often target the sick or weak individuals in a deer population.
Credit Derek Bakken

In his continuing series, "Wildlife Matters", DNR biologist Jeremy Holtz says sometimes good intentions don't always end up with the best results.

Next time, Jeremy will be talking about turkeys surviving our long, cold winter.

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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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High Speed Access for More Areas
4:42 pm
Thu March 6, 2014

Oneida County Committee Optimistic About Broadband Funding

The Oneida County Technology Committee is seeking funding from federal and state sources…to help fuel broadband development. 

Chair Don Sidlowski says the committee is filing preliminary paperwork Friday for a grant program through the FCC, the Federal Communications Commission. 

“It turns out that all of Oneida County, with the exception of Rhinelander, qualifies and so there’s a lot of places we can look in Oneida County for the federal dollars.”

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AARP
3:53 pm
Thu March 6, 2014

Still Time For Seniors To Get Free Tax Help

Credit AARP

The American Association of Retired Persons is again helping seniors with tax preparations. Nancy Brissee from Rhinelander coordinates A.A.R.P. Tax Aide Program at  the Oneida Senior Center in Rhinelander...  

"....we're a  TCE program, tax counseling for the elderly. It's main target is people over age 60 with low to moderate incomes. We prepare tax returns free of charge for those clients...."

 Brissee says clients should bring a few items with them when they come in for an appointment...  

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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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