Local News Briefs Tuesday 8/19/14

Severe thunderstorms moved through the area last evening accompanied by torrential downpours, hail and high winds. Wind damage was reported south of Campbellsport, in Plymouth and Green Lake. Half inch sized hail was reported in Rosendale and there was flash flooding in Waupun. Fond du Lac got 1.1 inches of rain and in Eden there was 2.2 inches. Fond du Lac County was under a Severe Thunderstorm Warning for just under an hour last night.

Four Injured In Four Separate Accidents In Dodge County Over The Weekend

Four people were hurt in four separate traffic accidents over the weekend in Dodge County including a 25-year-old Randolph man who jumped from a moving vehicle. In that particular accident the victim was arguing with the driver and was very drunk. The accident happened on Highway 73 and he was taken to the Columbus Hospital and later transferred to the UW-Hospital in Madison with non-life threatening injuries. A 24-year-old Watertown woman and a 23-year-old man suffered minor injuries when the vehicle she was driving rolled over twice after entering a ditch on Fabisch Road. They refused treatment.  No one was injured when a semi and a pickup truck pulling a farm type trailer crashed on Highway 151 near State Highway 33. However concrete posts being carried on the trailer of the pickup were spilled on the highway. The first three accidents happened Saturday morning. The fourth occurred Sunday afternoon on Breezy Point Road when a vehicle went off the road and overturned. The 54-year-old man driving it suffered minor injuries and refused treatment. 

Acuity Bungee Jumper Charged

(WHBL-Sheboygan)-A Manitowoc County man who made a bungee jump from a crane at the Acuity construction site in the city of Sheboygan is now facing a misdemeanor charge and may end up paying more than three thousand dollars in damages.  Twenty-six-year-old Nicholas Propson of Maribel was charged yesterday in Sheboygan County Court with entry onto a construction site which carries a penalty of 9 months in jail and up to a ten thousand dollar fine.  According to the criminal complaint, Proposon climbed the chain-link fence and made the jump on July 4th and then posted the video on You Tube.  Officials at Acuity were alerted to the video and contacted police who tracked down Propson.  He admitted to making the jump but refused to identify the people who filmed it.  Authorities said that due to the unauthorized access to the cranes, they had to be recertified and that process cost the company over $3,000 in down time.

Investigation Into Petri Stock Dealings Extended

The House Ethics Committee is extending its investigation into Congressman Tom Petri’s stock dealings. The federal lawmaker from Fond du Lac requested the investigation last February after a media report raised questions about his portfolio. Specifically a link was drawn between the Petri owned stock in companies that had business before Congress. Congressman Petri issued a statement yesterday saying he’s confident the committee will find he acted properly and complied with house rules. Heads of the committee said Monday the extension of the investigation does not reflect any judgment by the committee.

County Highway OOO Or Scott Street Closure

The Fond du Lac County Highway Department informs us that County Highway OOO or Scott Street between Rolling Meadows Drive and County Highway VV or Pioneer Road will be closed for construction beginning today. Weather permitting it will open within a week. There will be no posted detour route. Traffic is welcome to cross Highway 41 at Highway 23 or County Highway OO.

FDL County Supervisors To Consider Healthcare Advisory Referendum

The Fond du Lac County Board tonight will consider whether to include a healthcare advisory referendum on the November 4th ballot. It’s estimated it will cost up to $4,800 to place the question on the ballot. Voters in Fond du Lac and Ripon already have a referendum questions on their ballots. County Executive Al Buechel says the question has to do with accepting Federal Medicaid dollars. He says the Governor and State Legislature decided not to take the money. He says it would impact a number of people in the County who currently aren’t eligible for Medicaid. He says it would affect about 1,200 people with Medicaid payments to providers of about $34 million per year. He says it would cover more people and he thinks the state should have accepted the money, but it’s up to the board to decide whether to place the question on the ballot. Buechel says about 10 to 12 counties decided to hold referendums on the question and up to a dozen more will consider it Tuesday night.

Emergent Technology Center Being Formed In FDL County

With job growth expected in the information technology field Fond du Lac County will be opening up an Emergent Technology Center or technology academy. Fond du Lac County Economic Development Corporation President Steve Jenkins says it will be modeled after a similar program in Milwaukee. He says facility people will be able to attend for 12 to 18 months to be certified in different avenues of technology. He says one component will be a seed accelerator designed to foster new ideas into the development stage He says there will also be co-working space where everyone will collaborate together. Jenkins says the technology center will focus on STEM technologies. He says for instance there will be a focus on 3-D printing technology.

Eliminating Rape In Jail And Prison

An official with the Fond du Lac County Sheriff’s Department says a memorandum of understanding signed by multiple agencies to try and eliminate rape in prison and jail is a good thing for the County. Lieutenant Cameron McGee says the Prison Rape Elimination Act tries to make sure that no one serving time in jail or prison is sexually assaulted.  He says for instance they have zero tolerance for that type of incident happening at the County Jail. The agreement was signed at Taycheedah Correctional Institution recently. In addition to the Sheriff’s Department and Taycheedah, sexual assault response team partners include ASTOP, St. Agnes Hospital’s SANE (Sexual Assault Nurse Examiner) program, Community Corrections, the Fond du Lac Police Department, and Fond du Lac County District Attorney’s Office. 

New School Year, New Principal At FDL High School

The Fond du Lac High School begins the new school year with a new principal. Michelle Hagen succeeds Jon Wiltzius who decided to retire and run an area campground. Hagen was born and raised in Milwaukee. She says she worked her way up through the Milwaukee Public School System during 23 years with the district. She says she and her husband were looking for a summer home about 14 years ago and found one in the area. After her husband retired as an assistant chief with the Milwaukee Police Department they decided to make Fond du Lac their home. She was hired last August as an assistant principal at the high school.  She says when Wiltzius decided he was retiring a family friend, longtime Fond du Lac Schools administrator Jim Gryzwa, encouraged her to apply for the principal’s job. She says one of the things they will try at the high school this year is a pilot intervention program to help students who need to improve their reading skills.

Governor Says Ice Bucket Challenge Was Cold But For A Good Cause

Politicians are used to getting the cold shoulder, but for Governor Scott Walker and his wife Tonette it went a little further than that recently. Walker says when he took the ice bucket challenge to help raise funds for research into a cure for A-L-S or Lou Gehrig’s disease he was expecting it to be cold, but not that cold. Their son recommended a way that wouldn’t have been quite so cold, but a staffer didn’t get the memo. He says his son urged them to have the ice put in at the last minute, but a staffer put it in about a half hour before the challenge so the water was ice cold when it was poured over them. He says he also got a laugh out of the way other politicians participated in the challenge. Senator Ron Johnson did it in an ice cold stream while on vacation and Reince Priebus the Chairman of the Republican National Committee jumped into Lake Michigan after doing it.

Parking Ramp Lighting Being Replaced

Fond du Lac Community Development officials say a project is underway to replace defective overhead lights in the Macy Street Parking Ramp. The City received federal stimulus funding in 2011 for replacement of the outdated overhead lights in both parking ramps with new energy-efficient LED lights. It cost nothing for the City. Officials say as a result of the project energy costs for both ramps have decreased significantly. About 25 percent of the lights at the Macy Street parking ramp are being replaced after experiencing problems, but they were under warranty. The lights at the Portland Street Ramp are using an even newer technology.

UW-FDL Madrigal Dinner Auditions

The UW-Fond du Lac’s Music Department will be holding auditions in two weeks for a winter madrigal production “The Peasant, The Prince, The Boot and the Mirror.” The auditions will be held from 12:30 to 1:20 p.m. on Tuesday, September 2nd, and 12:30 to 1:20 p.m. or 4 to 6 p.m. on Wednesday, September 3rd, in the music rehearsal room UC-116. The performance will be held on Saturday, December 13th in the University Center Commons. The production is full of comedy, mischief and misrule in which the Royal Court is lolling for a pretender to the throne to replace the aging king. There are roles in the production for ages 17 and up for both men and women. There is one solo singing role, the Minstrel. That person should also be able play the guitar. Rehearsals begin September 8th.

Badger Basketball Star Dekker Honored During Sheboygan City Council Meeting

(WHBL-Sheboygan)-Sheboygan basketball star Sam Dekker was called to last night’s city council meeting and then presented with the Key to the City.  Sheboygan Mayor Mike Vandersteen chronicled Dekker’s career from Sheboygan Lutheran’s first state championship to his present role as a starter on the UW basketball team. Vandersteen says almost every time Dekker is mentioned during a Badger game they say he’s from Sheboygan. Following a standing ovation, Vandersteen then presented Dekker with the Key to the City. Dekker thanked them for their support and said he wasn’t expecting the recognition. He said he will always call Sheboygan his home.