Local News Tuesday 4/23/13

Armed Robbery In Random Lake


Sheboygan County Sheriff’s officials are looking for a man who held up a convenience store in Random Lake just before 5 p.m. Sunday afternoon. The man was wearing a ski mask when he entered the MSM Mart on Wolf Road armed with a handgun. He forced the employee to open the cash register and left with an undisclosed amount of money. The suspect was described as being slender and tall. Anyone with information is asked to call the Sheboygan County Sheriff’s Office at 920-459-3114 or the Crime Stoppers at 1-877-283-8436.


Sheboygan House Fire Displaces Family


(WHBL-Sheboygan)-Fire Sunday afternoon extensively damaged a home in the city of Sheboygan.  The fire in the home was discovered around two o’clock.  Sheboygan firefighters arriving on the scene found a fire in the rear of the home.  Officials say the fire in the kitchen area was quickly extinguished, but not before it caused an estimated $35,000 in damage.  A cat perished in the fire.  There were no injuries reported, but the occupants have been displaced as a result of the blaze.  The cause remains under investigation.


FDL Man Gets More Time In Prison


A 21-year-old Fond du Lac man has had 3 years in prison and 9 years of extended supervision added to his sentence when he recently appeared in Fond du Lac County Court. Judge Gary Sharpe sentenced Michael LaBrec on 2nd degree sexual assault of child and child pornography possession charges. The time he gave LaBrec is in addition to the 15 years in prison and 15 years of extended supervision he was sentenced to in March of last year on another charge of 2nd degree sexual assault of a child. The victim in that case was a 14-year-old boy LaBrec had bribed to have sex with him. He promised the victim $1,000 from a winning lottery ticket and a used car.


BD Man Charged For Fleeing From An Officer


The 47-year-old Beaver Dam man who was found hiding in the basement of his home following a high-speed chase with Dodge County Sheriff’s deputies was charged last Friday. Bond was set at $10,000 cash for Eddie Morris when he made his initial court appearance. A deputy had stopped Morris on Highway 151 near Forest Road, but Morris sped away while the deputy was questioning him. The pursuit lasted 5 miles and reached speeds in excess of 120 miles-per-hour until Morris struck a curve in the City of Beaver Dam and a tire deflated. He then fled on foot, but was found hiding in his home. A preliminary hearing is scheduled for May 2nd.


Local State Legislators React To UW System Tuition Fund Balance


In light of a Legislative Fiscal Bureau and Legislative Audit Bureau Analysis showing a $650 million surplus in the tuition fund balance for the UW System local Republican lawmakers are calling for tuition freezes or rollbacks. State Representative Jeremy Thiesfeldt says he will support freezing tuition for the next 2 years. State Senator Rick Gudex says, “I am very concerned to find out that at a time when legislators are struggling to balance our state’s budget, the UW System has decided to stash cash away at the expense of UW Students.” He says he will be seriously looking at a tuition rollback. State Representative Michael Schraa is backing calls for statewide tuition freeze. Schraa says, “The level of incompetency and deception at the top levels of the UW System is outrageous.”


FDL School Board Approves Changes At Assistant Principal Positions


The Fond du Lac School Board approved a couple of changes at assistant principal positions during last evening’s meeting. John Meznarich will be leaving at the end of the school year to become the high school principal at Cameron High School in northwestern Wisconsin. Fond du Lac Schools Superintendent Jim Sebert says he’s done a great job for the district over the last nine years. The board also approved a recommendation to make Matt Steinbarth the assistant principal at Woodworth Middle School. He was the top candidate from a field of 64. Steinbarth has taught math at Woodworth since 2000. Sebert says it’s a bittersweet appointment because Steinbarth is a great teacher. Steinbarth will replace Don Smith, who will become the Principal of the STEM Academy and STEM Institute and District Coordinator of Assessment.


Ripon School District Firing On All Cylinders


With only a few months left in his tenure as Ripon Schools Superintendent, Richard Zimman says the school district will be in good shape when new Superintendent Dr. Mary Whitrock takes over in July. He says financially the district has been very responsible during his nine years. He says academically the High School ranks in the top 10 percent of all high schools in the state in ACT scores. Zimman says the Academic Bowl Team has won their 3rd conference title in a row and 12th in the last 15 years. He says they have charter school programs and a 4-year-old Kindergarten program. He says every student from grades three through eleven have some type of computing device and all students will be equipped with similar technology in the next few years. Zimman says the school district is firing on all cylinders.


Housing Sales Down For Month, But Up For Year In FDL County


There was mixed news for Fond du Lac County when it came to sales of existing homes in March. Median prices increased by more than 35 percent, but the sales of homes dipped by 15 percent. Meanwhile across the state homes sales increased by 3 percent, the 21st straight month for an increase the best March in six years, according to a report from the Wisconsin Realtors Association. President Mike Theo says prices also climbed, by nearly ten percent. He says inventories are starting to shrink, which he says is good for the housing market. According to year-to-date figures the median price of a home in Fond du Lac County is up by 7.5 percent and the home sales are up 1.6 percent.

For more information click here.


Mercury Recycling Challenge


Fond du Lac Festivals Executive Director Leanne Doyle has announced the launching of the Mercury Marine Recycling Challenge. Earth Day was the perfect day to announce the effort that will allow schools to paint a mural or design on a 55 gallon drum that will be used to collect glass, plastic and other recyclable materials at Walleye Weekend in Lakeside Park. The 55 gallon drums are available first come; first serve at the Fond du Lac Festivals offices at 650 North Main Street. Drums have to be returned by May 20th for judging. She says the winner with the best design will get $500 towards an environmental club or the money will be allocated by the PTA towards that school. She says the challenge fits in with Mercury’s philosophy about protecting the environment.

For more details about the challenge click here.


FDL Fire Dept Brat Fry For Red Cross Friday


One of the biggest brat frys in the area will be held at the end of the week. The Fond du Lac Fire Department will hold its annual brat fry to benefit the American Red Cross on Friday at the South Main Street Fire Station. It will be from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Fire Chief Peter O’Leary says it’s usually a nice day for those attending. He says it’s their way of giving back to the Red Cross, which does so much for them at fire scenes and for the community in general. Brats and burgers will be $2.50 each. O’Leary says they will even deliver for orders over 20 items that are pre-ordered. Again for pre-orders call 322-3800, but make sure you do it before 9 a.m. on Friday.


State DOT Thinking Green During Earth Week


As we celebrate Earth Week the state’s Department of Transportation says it is committed to using recycled materials during construction of green highways and other projects. Steve Krebs is with the Bureau of Technical Services. He says they wouldn’t be using recycled materials for bridges and highways if they didn’t perform as well as new materials. Also during Earth Week, the D-O-T’s RIDESHARE program encourages “Bike Buddies” to commute together, to save on gas and emissions and help the environment.


FDL Library Express Hours Expanded


Hours at the Fond du Lac Public Library’s Express branch near Festival Foods will change on May 1st. The branch will be open seven days a week: 2 to 6 p.m. Monday through Friday and 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturdays and Sundays. The branch previously had been closed on Tuesdays and Wednesdays. The schedule for Family Storytime at the Express branch will change as well. Starting May 1st, the all-ages session of stories and songs will take place at 2:30 p.m. on Wednesdays. There no registration required; just drop in. May marks the date when the Main Library downtown switches to summer hours, with the library closed on Sundays. The library resumes Sunday hours in October.