WXPR news(Natalie Jablonski)

Should the Oneida County Board agree next week, a compromise has been reached concerning the Heal Creek property west of Rhinelander.

The county originally wanted to build a state-of-the-art light industrial park on the property next to the Northwood Golf Course on Rhinelander's far west side. Nothing  developed, and the county put the property up for sale. Two groups bid, the Hodag Sports Club with two offers, and another offer from the town of Crescent and city of Rhinelander.

Lakeland School Board Improves Auditorium

May 12, 2015

Work will start within two weeks on remodeling the auditorium at Lakeland Union High School in Minocqua.

The school board this week awarded a $2 million dollar contract to Miron Construction from Neenah. That's the same firm that redid the school's front entrance to make it more secure, along with renovating the bathroom and nurse's station this past year.

Most of the auditorium work will take place during summer, but work must be done by September.

Long time Boulder Junction Chamber of Commerce Director Theresa Smith is leaving that post to take the directorship of the Campanile Center For The Arts.

Smith says it was a tough decision to leave the job she's held for 10 years as she says the community was very supportive...

"....everyone is very hard working and involved in the chamber and the other organizations in the area. We have worked together for a long time to build Boulder Junction making it a premier destination here in the Northwoods...."

Alex Young-You Tube

Rhinelander City Administrator Blaine Oborn  confirmed Tuesday he will be leaving that post this summer to take the City Administrator job in Lake Geneva.

Oborn was named Rhinelander's City Administrator almost four years ago, after the departure of Bill Bell.

Oborn has been in his post during a time that has seen much change in the city. He says getting the city's fiscal situation in order was a priority...

The Rhinelander city council has approved applying for a key component of the downtown redevelopment project.

The city will apply for a $500,000 grant from the state to help pay for the project. If all goes as planned, it could start next year.

Public Works Director Tim Kingman outlined the funding to date for the below ground aspect of the upgrade...

"....we have a $5.136 million dollar project. Of which we have $3.2 million in secured finance from Rural Development..."

May is Mental Health Awareness Month. Later this month, the NAMI Northern Lakes Chapter of the National Alliance For Mental Illness will hear about how law enforcement is training to work with people with mental illness.

Lon Voils from the local chapter says Rhinelander Police Chief Michael Steffes will discuss how law enforcement is being trained to work with people in crisis....

" enforcement can, with a little bit of training and understanding, respond better and deescalate situations that can escalate into unpleasantness, I guess...."

The next drug take back day is set for Saturday in four Oneida county places.

The take back allows residents with unwanted prescription drugs to turn them in at collection points for disposal, no questions asked and no charge.

Rhinelander Police Department is one collection spot. Police Chief Michael Steffes says the goal is get the drugs off the streets....

State Senator Tom Tiffany of Hazelhurst has authored a bill that would allow local governments to ask for a local option sales tax to be used exclusively for transportation.

The bill was co-authored in the Assembly by Represenative Dean Knudson.

Tiffany says the tax would be similar to what counties already have the authority to do....

May is Mental Health Month. While it's easy to see when a child has an injury, sometimes it's less easy to read when the young person is having mental health issues.

Corie Zelazoski from the Oneida County Health Department says 13 percent of youth ages 8-15 live with mental illness severe enough to impair their daily lives. That figure jumps to 21 percent for kids ages 13-18. Zelazoski says there are signs if there is a problem and perhaps professional help is needed...

The slowdown in state revenue growth has prompted AARP Wisconsin to call for the Walker administration to ask for federal money to help fund Medicaid expansion money. The money was offered to states by the Obama administration as part of Obamacare. To date, Governor Walker has refused taking the money, saying there is no guarantee the money will continue to be there.

But Helen Marks Dicks from AARP Wisconsin says the recent fiscal report saying less tax money than projected will come to Wisconsin's coffers is a good time to take the federal money...