Local News - ... (Archives)

Source... Click on the title to read the article at its original source.
28 Feb & 01 Mar  
Hurley settles in, thumps Phillips
"Despite a comfortable win Tuesday night, the Hurley Midgettes weren’t very comfortable with how they played.  With that, they focused on getting their comfort zone at practice and apparently did just that. The Midgettes were clicking in all areas Thursday as they cruised to an 80-43 victory over the Phillips Loggers in their WIAA Division 3 girls basketball regional tournament game."
Midgets win thriller, piece of Indianhead title
"Hurley earned a share of the IC title with a 42-41 victory Friday over Washburn, the team they now own the conference championship with.  The Midgets (15-5, 13-3) completed the regular season sweep of Washburn (13-3 IC) in a game to remember."
Tigers win season finale over WVL 82-31
"Matt Klopatek led the Tigers (8-12) with 24 points and 10 assists. Brett Pfieffer scored 16 points with 14 rebounds and Jeff Richards dished out nine assists. Josh Verdevela led WVL with 14 points."
WI Could Close 8 Welcome Centers Including Hurley's
"But the Welcome Centers, the first of which opened in 1962, provide more than just printed information, said John Gulig, who manages the Kenosha center. They also offer a much-needed dose of human interaction during a time when people are being pushed into the Internet, voice mail and other soulless endeavors, he said.  "They still want that personal touch," said Gulig, who's worked at the center for 14 years. "People want to talk to people.""
Reaction to Earth Liberation Front Sentencing
"One of the main trees they work with is a hybrid poplar, a combination of a poplar and an Aspen.  Eric Gustafson is the Director for the institute and he says the trouble arose with ELF when they had mistaken ideas about how these trees are bred.  ELF was apparently concerned the institute was genetically engineering the trees, but Gustafson says they use a traditional, natural breeding method for the trees."
Forest Service Maps
"Forest Supervisor Jeanne Higgins says the maps of the northern Wisconsin forest show roads and trails open to motor vehicles and are the product of more than two years of work.  The maps also show areas open to all-terrain and other classes of vehicles and when the areas are open."
[Click HERE to link to the PDF maps. - Bob]
Despite budget problems, UWM chief to keep pushing improvements
"The school is seeking state approval for $240 million in building projects over the next six years, including new schools of freshwater science and public health and the envisioned engineering complex in Wauwatosa. Meanwhile, Santiago is urging legislators to restore some of the $8.4 million UWM requested."
Apostle Islands nominated for new parks quarter
"The Apostle Islands National Seashore will be Wisconsin's nomination for the new quarter honoring national parks.  Gov. Jim Doyle said Friday the islands on Lake Superior have been selected for the U.S. Mint's new quarter program."
State withholds payments to five voucher schools
"State officials said that the two established schools, Early View Academy and LaBrew Troopers Military University High School, each owed the state more than $200,000 because previous payments were larger than they should have been. The state policy is not to make any further payments until overpayments are cleared up."
Wis. to pay back $15.6M in disputed welfare funds
"Gov. Jim Doyle included money to cover the payment in his two-year budget this month and lawmakers said they likely will have no choice but to approve the request. The state will pay $500,000 every month through June and the remaining $13.1 million in the budget year that begins July 1.  The payments resolve a dispute that dates back to the 1990s but come just as Wisconsin faces its worst financial situation in history: a $5.7 billion budget shortfall through mid-2011."
LdF Tribe will go to referendum in efforts to spear more walleye
"This year, spearers of the Lac du Flambeau are taking the same route by saying they want more and need more fish, and that the tribe should eliminate the current agreement with the State of Wisconsin opening Pandora's box for negotiations on bag limits for hook and line fishermen on non-reservation lakes declared by the tribe."
WHAT’S NEW Robert L. Park Friday, 27 Feb 09
  • WEIGHT-LOSS: SCIENCE CONFIRMS THE “PHYSICS PLAN“.
  • THE ESTABLISHMENT CLAUSE: COMPOUNDING A SUPREME ERROR.
  • NASA: THINGS HAVE NOT GONE WELL IN CLIMATE OBSERVATIONS.
  • BEYOND MARS: JOVIAN MOONS CHOSEN FOR NEXT EXPLORATIONS.
Man stabs son for wearing hat in church
"Police said a 58-year-old man stabbed his teenage son after he refused to take off his hat at church earlier in the day. The father and his 19-year-old son got into an argument on Sunday afternoon. That's when police said the father went to a car, got a knife and stabbed his son in the left buttock and fled."
Solar industry, unions heading for clash on jobs - Las Vegas Sun
"In operation since June 2007, the 64-megawatt Nevada Solar One plant built by Spain-based Acciona was the first solar thermal plant built in 17 years and the largest of its kind in the world. The $260 million construction project hired labor from outside Nevada and in many cases outside the United States.  That became a rallying point for the state AFL-CIO, which had promoted legislation in 2001 that provided $15 million in state incentives for the plant. The union had imagined the incentives would be used to train and hire Nevadans for the high-paying specialized electrical work of hooking up photovoltaic solar panels to homes and businesses."
Right-Wing Tax And Budget Myths - The Progress Report
"As the Center for American Progress's Michael Ettlinger noted, these changes are "going to provoke outrage." But "were this budget to be enacted, it would be by far the most significant progressive step in over forty years," noted CAPAF Fellow Matt Yglesias. Conservatives are already propagating various myths about the budget; The Progress Report offers these debunks:"
Worst Week Ever: Republicans Unhinged - Huffington Post
"In just seven days, Republicans have offered up more amusement and fodder for an election campaign than even the most hopeful among us could have expected. What is especially thrilling is that it comes at little expense:"
[This is exactly the kind of gloating that makes bipartisanship impossible. - Bob]
Feingold Questions Northwest Wisconsinites' Inability to Receive WI-Related Programing - WQOW TV News 18 - Eau Claire

 

27 Feb

 
Midgette Basketball - WJMS Schedule Changes
This Saturday February 28th, WJMS will air the Northwoods Polka Jamboree with Frankie Baroka an hour earlier due to the Hurley girls regional basketball game. The Polka Jamboree will be from 11 a.m. to 12:45 p.m. At that time we'll join Sports Director Gary Aho for the pre-game of the WIAA Division 3 playoff game between Hurley and Ladysmith. Saturday's game will be played at a neutral site in Park Falls.
Sports schedule for WJMS the week of March 2nd.
  • Monday - 5:45 Girls - Bessemer @ Ewen-Trout Creek - Class D District 127
  • Tuesday - 6:45 Boys - Chetek @ Hurley - WIAA Division 3
  • Wednesday - 6:30 Girls - Winner of Bessemer/E-TC vs. Wakefield-Marenisco - Class D District 127
  • Thursday - 6:45 Boys - if Hurley wins Tuesday, Washburn or Phillips @ Hurley - WIAA Division 3
  • Friday - 5:45 Girls - Class D District Finals, if there is a local team playing
  • Friday - 6:45 Girls - if Hurley wins Saturday 2/28 @ Neillsville, opponent TBD
  • Saturday - 12:45 Boys - if Hurley wins Thursday @ Hayward, opponent TBD
  • Saturday - 6:45 Girls - if Hurley wins Friday @ Altoona, opponent TBD
  • Midgettes slash Loggers
    "The Midgettes (22-0) advance to the regional championship game against No. 2 seed Ladysmith in Park Falls on Saturday at 1 p.m. Ladysmith defeated No. 6 seed Park Falls 45-19 on Thursday.  "It'll be a big game," Oja said. "They are very comparable to us. They have a good post player and some nice guards. It will be a battle and hopefully we will win out.""
  • Like mother, like daughter
    "Linda (Morzenti) Manzanares was on the last Hurley girls team to win a regional title in 1980.  Her daughter, Hailey, and her teammates will try to break Hurley's drought in Saturday's WIAA Division 3 regional final against Ladysmith at Park Falls. "
Review results in no changes to logging project
"The Cayuga logging project near Clam Lake will move ahead as planned after a month-long review by the U.S. Forest Service found no need to alter it."
Kimball Volunteer Firemen's Famous Annual TurkeyFest - Ironwood Info
"The Kimball Volunteer Fire Department is having their famous Annual Turkey Dinner fundraiser Sunday, March 1st from 12 noon to 5:00 pm at the Kimball Community Center.  A complete turkey dinner with all the trimmings including desert and beverage."  ... (Adults are $8.00, Ages 5-12 $4.00 at the door, Under 5 are free, Take out dinners are available on request.)
State Department of Justice Finishes Investigation
"The state Department of Justice is done with its investigation into whether Governor Jim Doyle's administration steered state contracts to campaign donors' companies.  And investigators found no clear evidence of any
wrongdoing. "
E.L.F. Members Sent to Prison for Area Attack
"Two members of ELF or the Earth Liberation Front are sent to prison for destroying a U.S. Forest Service research facility in Rhinelander.  Research at the Hugo Sauer Nursery in Rhinelander was significantly set back in 2000 when vandals destroyed or damaged 500 trees totaling $500,000."
Obey: State will benefit from stimulus funds
""He didn't go into this with the view of, 'What can I get for Wisconsin?' He had the view of, 'We are in an enormous recession and the government has to act. So what can we do to get the economy moving and give the economy a jolt?'" said Obey spokesman Ellis Brachman."
Smoking foes rally for ban
""We are holding our breath for a smoke-free Wisconsin. We've been holding our breath for some time," said Aaron Doeppers, Midwest regional director of the Campaign for Tobacco Free Kids."
1 in 5 Wisconsin banks lost money in 4th quarter
"The state's 283 banks showed an overall loss of almost $354.6 million in the fourth quarter, according to the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. That compares with profits of $204.6 million in the fourth quarter of 2007.  A total of 221 Wisconsin banks showed a profit in the quarter, while 62 banks failed to make money."
Wis. wants to clarify definition of a firearm
"Kurt Thiede, the DNR's coordinator for the spring hearings, said Friday the change is in response to emerging technology that uses electromagnetic fields to fire projectiles.  He says clarifying the definition of a gun for hunting now would make sure that any new technologies that are developed could be reviewed and evaluated by the DNR before they get used in the fields and woods."
The effects of climate change
"“The loss of winter is a real potential for our future,” Lathrop said.  He went on to say milder winters lead to loss of recreation and can also slow the economy.  Logging depends on frozen ground for operations, while ice fishing and snowmobiling will unquestionably suffer, Lathrop said."
[Are you reading closely, Woodtick? - Bob]
Dobson resigns as chairman of Focus on the Family - Associated Press
"Dobson has a devoted following. His radio broadcast reaches an estimated 1.5 million U.S. listeners daily. Yet critics say his influence is waning, pointing to evangelicals pushing to broaden the movement's agenda beyond abortion, gay marriage and other issues Dobson views as most vital."
Carol Stream man dies after setting himself on fire - Wheaton Daily Herald
"A 58-year-old Wal-Mart employee set himself on fire in a Bloomingdale parking lot outside where he worked because, police officials said, he "wanted to die and couldn't take it anymore.""
Jindal's Katrina Story: A Tall Tale? - TPM Muckraker
"When the storm made landfall on August 29, Jindal was on a foreign trip. His family was evacuated to his parents' house in Baton Rouge, and when he returned, he went straight there to join them. In a September 1st CNN interview given from Baton Rouge, Jindal talked about taking an aerial tour of the disaster area, but didn't mention anything about having been on the ground personally."
Daily Show -- Fox "News" Reports Joe Biden's "Gaffe" - Comedy Central
I couldn't resist posting the link to this.  Jon Stewart mocks Faux News for making Biden's taking a few seconds to remember www.recovery.gov into a major story. In a world of war, pestilence, disease, and poverty, the Faux News coverage was ludicrous.- Bob

 

26 Feb

 
sweiler River Legislation Honoring Martin Hanson Approved
"“The purpose of this legislation is to preserve the Brunsweiler River in its free-flowing condition and to protect it from building and expansion so that it can be sustained for many years into the future” stated Sherman.   This legislation reaffirms Wisconsin’s legacy of environmental responsibility and in doing so it honors one of Wisconsin’s most important environmental leaders, Martin Hanson."
Xcel Energy seeks permit for $70 million project
"Xcel Energy has filed an application with the Wisconsin Public Service Commission to convert the Ashland Bay Front Power Plant into a biomass-fired electrical generation facility."
Midgets, Castle Guards square off for IC title
"Washburn (13-2) will travel to Hurley (12-3) Friday to decide the Indianhead Conference. Hurley can claim a share of the title with a win, while Washburn will be seeking to claim the championship outright."
DNR board approves Bibon Swamp purchase
"The two parcels, separated by about four miles, are already mostly surrounded by Natural Area land controlled by the DNR. Part of the Long Lake Branch of the White River, a renowned trout stream, snakes through part of the 80-acre parcel. The site is also home to three state-threatened species: the wood turtle, sheathed pondweed, and sweet-colt's-foot."
24 DNR Service Centers Closing to Public
"Adam Collins, a DNR spokesperson, says, "The public had to get in their car and drive down to a Service Center. They have the ability and opportunity to get their question answered either over the phone through our call center or through our website.""
Web site helps Wis. governments get stimulus money
"The Office of Recovery and Reinvestment posted a list of programs on its Web site Thursday. They offer funding for everything from pre-kindergarten education to alternative energy.  The program descriptions are vague but include contact information for local leaders looking for more details."
http://www.recovery.wi.gov/programs.asp?locid164.
Woman pleads guilty to election fraud
"All of those charged were paid by the Community Voters Project to sign up voters; some of those under investigation were also paid by the voters project or by the Association of Community Organizations for Reform Now. The two politically liberal organizations fired the workers and turned them in to authorities when they found evidence of fraud. Landgraf has called the cases unrelated and isolated incidents."
Obama proposes $475M for Great Lakes restoration
"A plan hatched more than three years ago to heal the battered Great Lakes would get its first big infusion of federal cash under President Barack Obama's proposed budget ...  It would target problems such as invasive species, runoff pollution, degraded wildlife habitat and contaminated bottomlands.
State considers benefits increase
"Wisconsin could receive a total of $89 million from the federal stimulus package if the state expands the requirements for unemployment benefits.  Without the expanded requirements, the state will receive $45 million from the package, according to Dick Jones, Workforce Development spokesperson.  However, the possible benefit increase has received criticism from Republican lawmakers who are concerned about the health of Wisconsin’s unemployment fund."
[What tax would the Republicans increase to replace this $44 Million in stimulus ... this $75 Million in economic activity? - Bob]
Sensenbrenner Pans President's Speech
""A for delivery, scary for content," said Sensenbrenner on 620WTMJ's "Wisconsin's Morning News."  His disagreement with President Obama isn't necessarily on what his goal is for getting the nation's economic state in a better state.  "The President and I do share the same goals of improving the economy and reducing the national debt.""
Guns in church bill dies in Arkansas Senate panel - Associated Press
"A state Senate panel has rejected a bill that would allow concealed handguns in Arkansas churches, a proposal that divided religious leaders.  The measure would have removed churches and other houses of worship from the list of places where concealed handguns are banned in Arkansas. Only churches and bars are on that list."
Senate Confirms Solis as Labor Secretary - The Caucus
"Her nomination troubles in some ways represented the deep philosophical divisions between Republicans and Democrats over labor issues. Or more specifically, the qualms on the G.O.P. side about her nomination might be seen as a prelude to the larger fight brewing over legislation that would make joining a union easier. Mrs. Solis enjoyed the strong backing of the big labor unions and her own family’s history as union members."
Justices Uphold Ban On Guns for Abusers - Washington Post
"Excluding domestic abusers convicted under generic battery laws "would frustrate Congress's manifest purpose," Ginsburg said in announcing her decision from the bench. Congress would not have enacted something that "would have been a dead letter in the majority of states from the very moment of its passage.""
On Second Thought Press Release
"It is with great excitement and optimism that I announce today the formation of a new progressive talk radio network. The On Second Thought Radio Network will continue to build upon the foundation laid by our predecessors and will work dilligently to fulfill our fiduciary responsibilities to all investors and principals involved. Equally important, we will, with the millions of faithful progressive listeners across the country, uphold our vision to promote freedom, social justice, economic justice and peace worldwide."

 

25 feb

 
Midgettes ease way to big win
"Getting five players scoring in double figures, the Hurley Midgettes rolled on to a big win Tuesday, trouncing Bruce/Weyerhaeuser 75-22 in their WIAA Division 3 regional girls basketball game."
Northern mayors express concern over shared revenue
"Sherman, also a member of the Joint Finance Committee, said the committee will largely determine the amount of shared revenue to be distributed, but now believes it would be applied across the board and not, like other years, subject to a more complicated formula based on property wealth. "
Iron County successful in obtaining grant funds
"Iron County Community Resource Development Agent Will Andresen has been successful in obtaining $5.6 million in grant funds for Iron County since he started working for the University of Wisconsin-Extension department in 2002."
Midgettes steamroll into semifinal
""We were sloppy," Hurley coach Melissa Oja said. "There were some good things and there were some bad things. For a tournament game, it was not very good on our part.""
Phosphorus Bill Passes in Assembly
"Backers of the bill say phosphorus runs off into state waters and contributes to plant growth that can clog them with algae and weeds.  The Assembly passed the bill without a single no vote yesterday and it now goes to the Senate."
Grow North Broadband Initiative
"Sroka and Collins say if broadband wireless Internet were available it would not only impact local businesses and personal Internet users, but seasonal homeowners as well.  Collins tells Newswatch 12, "We had just a tremendous number of folks that said if you can get me Internet, I can stay all summer. So if you think about that those people will spend anywhere between $300 and $1000 a week."
Legislators back measures on phosphorus-based fertilizers, breastfeeding
"In the Senate, there was no discussion on the breastfeeding bill and it passed on a voice vote.  Laws banning lewd behavior in public don't apply to breastfeeding, but some women still say they are harassed by security guards, store employees or restaurant staff when nursing their children.  Anyone prohibiting a woman's right to breastfeed could face a fine of up to $200."
EPA chief reconsidering ship ballast permit
"The Obama administration will reconsider a federal permit for oceangoing ships that critics say fails to prevent invasive species from entering the Great Lakes, the new chief of the Environmental Protection Agency said Tuesday."
Dave Zweifel's Plain Talk: GOP ideas just didn't work
"Still, people like Ryan and all but three of his fellow Republican members of Congress, conservative think-tankers like Asmus and their apologists in the conservative media still want to peddle the notion that giving tax breaks and bailouts to the rich is our salvation."
Doyle wants traffic cams
"In addition to safety concerns, Collins said the cameras would likely prevent the delays drivers often face as the result of crashes by preventing accidents altogether.  The citations sent to violators would be similar to parking tickets, according to Collins, and would only require the payment of a fine."
Supreme Court to hear Mojave cross case - Los Angeles Times
"The American Civil Liberties Union objected to the cross and filed a suit on behalf of Frank Buono, a Catholic and former Park Service employee. The suit noted that the government had denied a request to have a Buddhist shrine erected near the cross."
UAW urged to OK Ford survival plan: It could set pattern for GM, Chrysler - TradingMarkets
"In return, Ford agreed to recommit to production at all current assembly plants, with the exception of the Twin Cities Assembly Plant, which makes the Ford Ranger compact pickup. Ford has said that plant is to close this year.  The summary also reveals how the UAW and Ford plan to restructure payments to fund a health care trust fund for retirees."
Volcanos and the Levitating Train to Disneyland - ProPublica
  • "The $300 million would go to buy energy-efficient government vehicles, such as hybrid and electric cars."
  • "The $8 billion is for high-speed rail corridors that would connect far-flung cities."
  • "The $140 million goes to the U.S. Geological Survey for a series of construction and repair projects that includes "steam gages and seismic and volcano monitoring systems, national map activities and other critical deferred maintenance," according to the legislation."

24 Feb

 
Trollers shock Midgets
"Hurley blew more than just an eight-point halftime lead at Bayfield on Monday. In squandering that advantage to the Trollers in a 69-64 loss, the Midgets also lost a chance to win the Indianhead Conference title outright when they host Washburn on Friday night."
Local buyers meet local sellers at Farm-to-Fork
" The event, sponsored by the UW-Extension with help from the AmeriCorps VISTA Farm-to-School program, was intended to get local farmers in the same room with buyers looking to increase their food stock from the local level."
Xcel Energy files application for Bay Front biomass plant
"Xcel announced Monday that it has filed an application with the Wisconsin Public Service Commission (WPSC) seeking a certificate of authority to install biomass gasification technology at the Bay Front facility. The WPSC opened a docket for the proposed conversion last December to begin the process. The project has been in the planning-and-study stage for more than a year, an Xcel spokesman said."
Trollers knock Midgets out of first-place tie
"It doesn't happen too often, but Washburn fans were pulling for Bayfield in Monday's Indianhead Conference boys basketball game with Hurley.  And the Trollers came through in a big way, scoring a 69-64 win over the Midgets to give the Castle Guards a one-game lead in the IC standings."
Public hearing set on Wis. Indian logo bill
"School boards would have a chance to argue the logos or mascots are benign. If the state superintendent finds the complaint has merit, he or she would order the school board to drop the offending moniker within a year or face $100 to $1,000 in fines each day it continues to use it."
New Berlin nearly ready to use Lake Michigan water outside basin
"DNR approval seems likely, barring any unforeseen objection that would be brought to the department's attention during the 30-day public comment period under way on New Berlin's request, city and state officials said."
Fees collected, but Doyle budget would put off Real ID spending
"Residents of states that don't comply could not use their licenses to board airplanes or visit federal courthouses, starting as early as 2014. The law requires residents to provide birth certificates and other documents to get more secure IDs. Wisconsin drivers began paying $10 more for driver's licenses last year - raising about $12.5 million - so the state could comply with the federal Real ID law, which Congress passed in 2005 to thwart terrorism and prevent illegal immigrants from getting licenses."
Stimulus bill will support green projects
"Locally, this is likely to translate into weatherization grants for homes and businesses, more public transportation such as commuter and high speed rail, more bike paths, more new green buildings that use solar, geothermal and other alternative energies and perhaps even a manure digester to help farmers get rid of polluting animal wastes."
Challenger for Doyle emerges
"Walker raised $413,000 in donations last year, with over $270,000 coming from private parties and businesses that plan to back him if he chooses to run."
UW faculty, staff likely to face decreases in net pay
Feingold fields questions, launches stimulus website
Minocqua area room tax collections up by $18,000 over last year
"Based on a 2006 survey done for the chamber by the Northwoods Art Business Communications, the number one reason people come to the Minocqua area is for a simple, peaceful place to relax while experiencing the "unspoiled" nature.  Shauer said that these type of people like to fish, hunt, canoe, kayak, hike, bike, cross country ski, nature watch, camp, snowmobile and boat. In addition, they are family-orientated and outdoor enthusiasts."
Nigeria: Bauchi Crisis Worsens - Nine Lives Lost, 13 Churches Torched So Far - The Vanguard
"Six of the nine persons were killed by gunfire, while the remaining three were hacked down with cutlasses and left in pools of their blood, as tension gripped the entire city on news that crises have erupted in other parts like Yelwa and Muda Lawal."
How you can still buy American... MSN Money
"In 2008, the U.S. trade deficit with China accounted for roughly $73 a month in spending for every man, woman and child in America.  Wal-Mart, widely credited with driving up the volume of low-cost goods imported to the U.S., won't disclose what percentage of its products are made in America other than in the produce aisle (70%). Nor does give it preference to domestic manufacturers, identify its U.S.-made goods or train its employees to find them. Customers have to check the labels."
Florida Nips Fish Pedicures In The Bud - CBS News
"The treatment is popular in Asia and has spread to some U.S. cities. A client sticks feet, hands or other body parts in a bowl or pool, and the small fish chow down on soft decaying skin."
where are the Fox News corrections? - Media Matters
"REP. DAVID OBEY, (D) WISCONSIN: I wish they would make up their mind whether it is mice or rats, neither of which is in this bill if they will read it.  I got it right here. Find it and show it to me, show it to me!"

 

23 Feb

 
O'Reilly leaving WJMS
"WJMS will also be able to offer listeners an extended newscast every weekday at noon. We are excited about the opportunity to expand our news coverage in the noon hour. We will include more local news, sports, the weather forecast, obituary reports, Little Known Facts and other programs."
Laskiainen last celebration before Lent
"At Little Finland each year Laskiainen is celebrated in the snow with skis, sleds or snowshoes.  The Finnish holiday traditionally marks seven weeks before Easter and is the beginning of the Lenten season, according to Sonija Luoma, 75, at Little Finland Sunday."
Montreal earmarks projected stimulus funds
"The city of Montreal is on the list for stimulus funding through the state for two projects totaling $2,352,000.  On Thursday, Montreal Mayor Bob Morzenti said the city has learned it may not be eligible for the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Section 154 funding, as initially planned."
Bad River seeks water quality standards authority
"The Bad River Band of Lake Superior Chippewa is seeking authority from the Environmental Protection Agency to establish water quality standards for surface water throughout the tribe's reservation."
Early trout season opens March 7
"The early February warm-up erased what had been record snow accumulations in some parts of the state. “That means less snow so it will be easier to access the streams – at least until it snows again,” says Larry Claggett, the Department of Natural Resources coldwater ecologist."
  • Hurley comes back to overtake Granite Diggers
    "The Hurley Midgets had to rally from an 11-point fourth-quarter deficit to keep their Indianhead Conference title hopes alive Friday at Mellen, and Dylan Lauren's free throw with 1.1 seconds remaining lifted Hurley to a 48-47 victory over the Granite Diggers."
  • Midgettes fend off Oredockers
    "The Ashland Oredockers came into the game riding a nine-game winning streak, while the Hurley Midgettes were looking to cap off a perfect 20-0 regular season. "
Paczki Production
"Last year the bakery sold out of paczkis by noon, but there's one filling that is always left uneaten.  Diana Yinger, co-owner of the bakery, says, "Apple, for some reason it just isn't popular, they just don't like them so much."  No matter which flavor you prefer, the paczkis are here, and with 700 calories, they are sure to fill you up.
Wages for farm workers drop compared to a year ago
"The National Agricultural Statistics Service says the average wage for agricultural workers in the lake region of Wisconsin, Michigan and Minnesota was just over $11 an hour during the week of Jan. 11. It says that’s down 70 cents an hour from January 2008."
Oshkosh Corp. testing ATVs for use in Afghanistan
"The armed services have an urgent need for all-terrain vehicles to be used in the harsh conditions of Afghanistan. The ATV contract has a potential award value of $2 billion, Oshkosh said."
Converting power plant to biomass will cost Xcel $58.1 million
""The Bay Front project demonstrates our continuing commitment to the environment and a clean energy future," said Dick Kelly, president and chief executive of Xcel, in a statement. "We're helping our customers and communities practice sustainability while increasing local economic development. By combining energy efficiency, advanced energy technologies and improvements to existing generating resources, we're on track to reduce carbon dioxide in our Midwest service territories 22% from 2005 levels by 2020.""
Wis. bill requires Indian logo investigations
"If the complaints are justified, the state Department of Public Instruction would have to order the school to drop the mascot or logo within a year or face fines of up to $1,000 a day.  A fiscal estimate attached to the bill says about 40 state schools use American Indian names, nicknames, logos or mascots. The estimate says costs to replace existing uniforms and other supplies would vary from school district to school district."
Work of New Deal-era programs still all around us
"While they built sewers and water lines from scratch, today's stimulus workers will be digging up and replacing systems that have been long ignored. Consider sewers alone. The American Society of Civil Engineers estimates the cost of the state's wastewater infrastructure needs at $3.3 billion."
Partner benefits in budget challenged
"In his address, Doyle proposed an extension of benefits, such as health care, for domestic partners that work for the state.  The extension of various protections for all domestic partners in the state, including hospital visitation rights and the ability to take a leave of absence from work, would be extended under the plan as well."
Inmate Sues Over Interference With Satanism - CBS News
"A 35-year-old man imprisoned for drug possession has filed a $10 million federal lawsuit against Yellowstone County, alleging jailers interfered with his satanic religious practices while he was in jail. The lawsuit filed by Jason P. Indreland claims county jail staff took from him a religious medallion, denied him access to a "Satanic Bible or Book of Satanic Rituals" and ridiculed and punished him for his religious beliefs."
Deal gives Ford options on health care -  International Herald Tribune
"Ford Motor can substitute its stock for as much as half of its payments into a retiree health care trust under a deal announced Monday by the company and the United Automobile Workers union.  The agreement could form the basis for similar deals with General Motors and Chrysler, which need to cut costs and demonstrate that they can survive under the terms of their loans from the federal government."
Mice Overrun Fla. Courthouse, Fall From Ceiling - CBSNews
"There are so many mice in one Florida county courthouse that they've been seen falling from ceiling tiles.  One judge at the Palm Beach County Courthouse calls it an infestation. Some staffers say they check their handbags for stowaways before leaving the building each day."
[Any good punch lines about "professional courtesy?" - Bob
 

21&22 Feb

 
Hurley twins: 'Today' next?
"Three sets are 17 years old; two are 16. Kristina and Kayla Smith are the only twins who have gone to Hurley schools since kindergarten. Judy and Stephanie Nevala started at Hurley in fourth grade. Alec and Erin Gulan and Jesse and Jessica Cox both started at Hurley as freshmen. The newest twins, Justin and Kaitlyn Smith, moved from San Diego in December."
Midgets rally for big win over Mellen
"Hurley erased a 12-point deficit to beat Mellen 48-47 on Friday, keeping its hopes for a conference title and a top seed in the regional tournament alive.  The Midgets (14-4, 12-2 Indianhead Conference) remain a half-game behind Washburn in the conference race. The Division 3 regional tournament seeding meeting is scheduled for Sunday."
AHS, Hurley meet in huge showdown
"Something has to give tonight in Hurley when two of the hottest teams in the area meet in a huge non-conference girls basketball game.  The Indianhead Conference champion Midgettes will try to put a cap on a perfect 20-0 regular season, while the Lake Superior Conference champion Oredockers will be gunning for their 10th win in a row."
Area mayors counting on Superior Days
"He [Bayfield Mayor Larry MacDonald] said he'll also be working in coordination with other northern officials to support the establishment of regional transportation authorities (RTAs) to provide increased access to public transportation in a region with minimal transportation options to travel west toward Duluth, east toward the Hurley/Ironwood area or to any points south."
Disbanding of Washburn veterans groups marks the end of an era
"There was no sounding of taps, no final posting of the colors for members of the Washburn Veterans of Foreign Wars and American Legion posts — only a sad realization that their membership was too old and too few to continue their proud tradition of service to their community."
Doyle Proposes School Funding Reform
"Doyle told the Wisconsin State Journal that he supports lifting the state's revenue caps for districts that meet certain requirements. Many educators say the caps on property taxes and state aid haven't kept up with schools' rising costs."
Conserve School Lawsuit
"Conserve Community represents more than 230 students, parents, and community members who feel the recently announced change in direction for the school is a violation of the founder's intentions."
Solar invention could be hot
"PDM Solar will build and test its first fully operational solar-powered air conditioning device in Phoenix within the next eight to 10 months, David Baker, the company's president, said Friday. If the technology reduces carbon emissions and electric costs, PDM Solar expects to begin mass producing the product for sale nationally, Baker said."
Johnson Controls positioned to benefit from stimulus
"Noting the law's focus on projects to make government buildings more energy efficient, Leiker wrote, "Johnson Controls has a stand-alone business unit focused on going after federal, state and local government-funded contracts. Historically, the company captures a large percentage of the contracts it goes after in these end markets.""
Rebate credit leading to errors on tax returns
"Most taxpayers aren't eligible for the credit, but some are mistakenly claiming it. Others are wrongly entering the amount of the economic stimulus payment they got last year on the recovery rebate credit line.  The stimulus payment isn't taxable and shouldn't be entered anywhere on the return, said Christopher Miller, IRS spokesman in Milwaukee."
U.S. must get serious about creating jobs
"The torturous dumbing-down process began the minute the bill left the desk of House Appropriations Committee Chair David Obey -- the true progressive populist hero of the current fight... Obey got back in the game as the House and Senate reconciled two very different bills. He and Pelosi and California Democrat George Miller succeeded in restoring some spending that might actually create jobs and help the unemployed."
WHAT’S NEW Robert L. Park Friday, 20 Feb 09 Washington, DC
  1. LHC: IT WAS MADE TO RUN AND THAT’S WHAT IT’S GONNA DO.
  2. TEVATRON: DELAYING RETIREMENT TO FIND THE HIGGS.
  3. ISS NODE 3: HOW ABOUT UNITY, HARMONY AND ROBOTICALLY?
  4. STIMULUS: $21 BILLION OUT OF $787 BILLION FOR SCIENCE.
Showing up, but not signing up - Columbus Dispatch
"People tend not to worship in the same congregation as loyally as they did in past generations, said David Roozen of the Hartford Institute for Religion Research at Hartford Seminary in Connecticut. The baby-boomer generation balked at joining institutions of any sort, and the tendency has become more pronounced among their children, he said."
Iowa House holds vote open for labor bill - Times-Republican
"A measure to require contractors to pay the prevailing wage to workers when they bid on public projects fell one vote short of House approval Friday night, but backers vowed to press on throughout the weekend to find the additional vote.  Backers promised to keep the House in session around the clock throughout the weekend, assigning shifts to hold the speaker's chair through the night. Republicans set up similar shifts to watch out for any more odd developments."
Icy reception for repairmen - THE ARKANSAS LEADER
"Some 100 workers from Pennsylvania, about a third of them African Americans, came down to help the local electric cooperative restore power after the devastating ice storm last month took down just about every power pole in the county. They worked tirelessly clearing trees and putting up poles and lines in the ice and freezing rain to try to speed power to people.  For their trouble, they were harassed and threatened by roving groups of young men shouting racial epithets and pointing guns at them."
Country Roads Parody Video - Head On News
The Head on News is a union backing, freedom defending, internet streaming public service talk radio network based in West Virginia, Florida, Australian and point between that has noticed hits coming off the link that is always in the right column here at MyHurley.  This is the first time I have seen them picked up by Buzz Flash with its national audience. - Bob
Jobless hit with bank fees on benefits - EarthLink
"For hundreds of thousands of workers losing their jobs during the recession, there's a new twist to their financial pain: Even when they're collecting unemployment benefits, they're paying the bank just to get the money - or even to call customer service to complain about it."

 

20 Feb

 
Radio Auction Finishes Today
"The WJMS/WIMI Radio Auction continues this week Monday through Friday from 9 to 11AM. Click HERE for a list of auction items."
Hurley school principal's promises 'stick'
"During the homecoming pep session Jan. 23, Gulan found himself strapped to the gymnasium wall, supported by a plastic milk crate and more than 400 pieces of duct tape.  "You should have seen it," cheerleading coach Bridget Hitter-Nellessen said. "It was absolutely crazy, but Mr. Gulan was such a good sport. He'd do anything for these kids when it comes to fundraising."
Midgettes beat Tigers, finish unbeaten in Indianhead
"Hurley finished its third undefeated Indianhead Conference season in four years with a 62-19 win at Mercer Thursday night.  The Midgettes (19-0, 16-0) are 63-1 in conference play over that span, with the only loss coming last season at Mellen."
Congressman Dave Obey Visits Rhinelander 
"Obey told Newswatch 12, "You'll have massive layoffs, you'll have families who can't afford to keep their homes, families losing their health insurance, losing their retirement savings, families that can't afford to send their kids to college. So, anytime the economy goes south, people get hurt, and we are trying to minimize that hurt.""
Unemployed can expect $25 a week increase
"Anyone getting state or federal unemployment automatically gets the extra $25 a week as long as they are eligible for benefits for the rest of the year.  Wisconsin provides unemployment benefits up to $363 a week for as many as 26 weeks."
Governor: Budget plan eases middle-class families' tax burden
""We've always had a progressive income tax," Doyle said. "Frankly, in the time we're in right now, if you're making over $300,000 per year in this economy, maybe you can help us out a little bit to make sure we have decent schools and to make sure kids can go to the university.""
Doyle budget would eliminate cost analysis for state contracts
""I'm just not sure they've proven to be of great value," he said. "When you're facing the kind of deficit we're facing and looking at doing a lot more with less, there are just some things where you have to say, 'Maybe these are good ideas but we can't quite do them.'""
Doyle school funding plan would lift revenue caps in exchange for teacher accountability,
"By next fall, the Democratic governor said he hopes to have a bill before lawmakers that would provide districts with a voluntary method to move away from the state's revenue caps imposed on schools since 1993. Critics say the caps have failed to keep up with schools' costs and forced cuts in services."
Doyle gives financial aid to UW; shorts private, tech schools
"Although Wegenke said he did not know the reason for the lesser amount granted to private and technical schools, he noted 30 percent of eligible private school students were turned away last year because of a lack in financial aid dollars."
A unified call for changing the state's school funding formula
"With Oneida County school districts "receiving less state aid than comparable school districts in Wisconsin based on the state's school aid formula," the resolution said the board supports the notion that "a change in the state aid formula is necessary in order to re-allocate more funds to Oneida County school districts.""
Democratic leader to business: You're the problem
""On bipartisanship, let me tell you that Democrats understand the importance of a free market, but we also understand the importance of a level playing field," Miller said. "In the last 15 years, Wisconsin Manufacturers & Commerce has badmouthed Wisconsin more than any other group. We try to promote Wisconsin as much as we can, and we try to bring jobs into the state, but it's hard to do when the largest business group in the state is saying how bad it is here.""
The Catholic Crusade Against a Mythical Abortion Bill - Amy Sullivan, Time
"At a time when the United States is gripped by economic uncertainty and faces serious challenges in hot spots around the globe, some American Catholics are finding it both curious and troubling that their church has launched a major campaign against a piece of legislation that doesn't exist and wouldn't have much chance of becoming law even if it did."
Charities Now Seek Bankruptcy Protection - NY Times
"While no one has compiled data on how many charities have turned to the courts for protection, experts in the field say it has become more common as nonprofits have been pressured by donors to operate more like businesses.  “Our expectation is that this is just the tip of the iceberg,” said Diana Aviv..."
Wal-Mart settles wage-hour violation case - Examiner
"Wal-Mart, a notorious union-buster, sweatshop operator and partner with the Communist Party in China has agreed to repay its South Carolina workers $49 million as compensation for wage and hour violations. In a statement the company admits its anti-worker business ethic resulted in this suit but claims it has changed its ways."
Appalachian History Gives New Perspective of How Workers View Jobs... Kansas City Infozine
"“In that society and time period, preaching wasn’t a paid job, so the preachers were also coal miners,” Callahan said. “So, you have coal miners who are preachers looking at the union with the same ideas. In the unions, they are using stories from Exodus and talking about being led out of slavery as a way of showing what the union can do for them. Unfair labor practices were defined in religious terms.”"
Poll Shows Approval Of Obama/Dems Performance On Economy, Disapproval Of GOP - TPM
"Only 30% say Obama hasn't done enough to cooperate with Republicans in Congress -- the GOP base vote, basically -- while 62% say he's doing the right amount and 6% say it's been too much. Flipping it around, only 27% say Republicans have done enough to cooperate with Obama, with 64% saying not enough and 5% saying too much."

 

19 Feb

 
State Stimulus Bill Passes
"Rep. Gary Sherman (D – Port Wing) today voted with the majority to pass the Wisconsin version of the economic recovery package, a group of measures designed to help Wisconsin create jobs and move the economy forward."
Joint Audit Committee Decision to Audit Wisconsin Shares Program
"State Representative Tamara Grigsby (D-Milwaukee) and State Senator Bob Jauch (D-Poplar), chairs of the Senate and Assembly Children and Families Committees, were joined by Legislative Joint Committee on Audit Co-Chairs Senator Kathleen Vinehout and Representative Peter Barca in a press conference that followed this morning’s decision to audit the Wisconsin Shares program. Grigsby and Jauch joined together to stress the need to reform Wisconsin Shares and maintaining it in the current economic crisis."
Ashland shuts down Midgets
"The Oredockers limited Hurley to just three points in the first quarter and 11 points through one half. With Reggie Habas stepping up to spark Ashland’s second-half offensive surge, they Oredockers set up a 40-22 lead through three quarters."
Wisconsin DOT Shares New Plan
"Aileen Switzer is Chief of the Wisconsin DOT Planning Section. She says, "Highway 51, 29 and 13, for example, are a few of the ones that are identified as important state-level corridors. What'll occur once the plan is adopted is we will hand those corridors over to the region offices, they will look at those and then they will also identify further regionally significant corridors.""
Smoking Ban
"Rob Swearingen, the Pres. of the Tavern League of Wisconsin, says "The Tavern League of Wisconsin is shocked that the Governor of the state of Wisconsin would see fit to include a state-wide smoking ban in his budget.""
Tax hike could help smokers quit
"Anti-tobacco activists say a proposal to raise the state's cigarette tax could prompt thousands of people to quit smoking and make thousands of teenagers think twice about starting.  An opponent, though, said the tax would further penalize people with serious addictions who are not breaking the law.
Doyle is open to tolls to help fund roads
"Gov. Jim Doyle signaled for the first time Wednesday that he would be open to charging tolls on Wisconsin highways, possibly for express lanes, as the state seeks to replace falling gas tax revenue in the years ahead.  "I hate the idea of tolls," but the state must find new ways to pay for roads and other transportation, Doyle told Journal Sentinel editors and writers."
Wis Legislature passes bill to start fixing budget
"With no Republican support, the Wisconsin Legislature passed a bill late Wednesday that raises taxes on everything from iPod downloads to corporate income, to help balance a record-high budget shortfall.  The fast-tracked measure also includes money for job training to put people back to work and starts spending federal stimulus money by directing $300 million toward road projects."
Tuition to rise in next budget
"“It is naive to assume that any campus will be immune to the negative effects of this budget,” said David Giroux, spokesperson for the UW System. “You might see fewer class sections, fewer classes offered, staff positions remaining vacant forcing others to take on bigger loads.”"
Governor’s Budget stays True to Wisconsin’s Priorities, Values
"The governor, along with Congressman David Obey, understands the important link between education and economy, Bell said.  "The governor's proposal marks the start of the state budget process, and we hope lawmakers will join him in recognizing the importance of investing in public education. The time is now to talk about how Wisconsin funds its schools, in order to keep districts from further cuts and damage to quality education."
ND measure says fertilized egg has human rights - Associated Press
"The bill is a direct challenge to Roe v. Wade, the U.S. Supreme Court decision that extended abortion rights nationwide, supporters of the legislation said... The bill declares that "any organism with the genome of homo sapiens" is a person protected by rights granted by the North Dakota Constitution and state laws."
Locals drop immigration... Baxter Bulletin
"According to a recent article in USA Today, some of these saber-rattlers have lost their appetite, moved on to other issues, or simply confronted the economic reality that local enforcement measures cost money — something that is suddenly in short supply."
How to get rid of Roland Burris - Salon - USA
"Sen. Russ Feingold has proposed a constitutional amendment to fix the anomaly in the amendment; but we needn't wait for the tortuous amendment process."

 

18 Feb

 
Northern lawmakers generally pleased with budget proposal
"State Rep. Gary Sherman, D-Port Wing, said the budget proposal properly uses federal stimulus money for one-time expenditures while the cuts to the budget base will allow Wisconsin to be able to move forward when the economy rebounds."
Cigarette taxes to go up under Doyle budget
"Wisconsin’s cigarette taxes would be the third highest in the country, smoking would be banned in workplaces statewide and big oil company profits would be taxed, under the budget Gov. Jim Doyle presented on Tuesday."
Hurley K-12 school to host bicyclists
"The "Bike Wisconsin and Beyond" group will charter buses and begin a ride across Wisconsin in Hurley. Participants will stay in the school overnight in classrooms and gymnasiums and will also put up tents on school grounds."
  • Washburn drops Tigers
    ""We've played better," Mercer coach Tom Richards said. "Give Washburn credit. They have very good outside shooters and they put the ball in the basket."
  • Deeper Mercer girls beat Cardinals
    "Mercer took advantage of Wakefield-Marenisco's ballhandling mistakes in the first half to take a 34-19 win on Tuesday.  The Tigers (5-13) led 14-3 at halftime."
  • Ashland snaps Midgets' streak
    "Ashland ended Hurley's five-game winning streak Tuesday with a 57-46 victory."
State Superintendent Race Election Results
"Evers was the top vote-getter Tuesday with 37 percent, based on early results. Fernandez had 30 percent, with 38 percent of precincts reporting.  They will face each other in the April 7 general election. They finished ahead of three other candidates who were eliminated."
Doyle plan taxes smoking, oil
"No state employees would be laid off or forced to take unpaid furloughs, and there would be no general sales or income tax increases. However, a new higher income tax bracket would be created for 1 percent of families who earn more than $300,000 and taxes on capital gains would increase.  "This budget is designed to make necessary cuts, but avoid unnecessary pain," Doyle said in a speech before the Legislature as he outlined his two-year, $62.7 billion budget proposal."
Senator Kohl: Stimulus Package is Not a Bailout
""We're looking forward to the time when job loss will not continue to go up, will at least hold and then go down. That's what the economic recovery package is all about," Senator Kohl said.  He also says the bill has long-term benefits.  "We're going to be spending a lot of money on trying to educate our young people, on providing tax cuts for families so they can afford to send their young people to college," Kohl said."
Doyle: Budget to cut services, raise taxes, release some inmates
"For what may be the first time in state history, general-fund spending will drop for the fiscal year that begins July 1, by about 5%. Total state spending - including tuition, fees and federal aid - will rise, however."
Federal judge strikes down Wis. judicial rules
"A federal judge has struck down rules that prohibit Wisconsin judges from joining political parties, soliciting campaign donations and endorsing partisan candidates.  U.S. District Judge Barbara Crabb says the rules do little to advance an independent judiciary and violate judges' free speech rights. She says the Wisconsin Judicial Commission cannot enforce them."
Budget calls for early release for some felons
"Certain felons would be eligible to get out of prison early for good behavior, one day for every two days without a violation of prison rules, under the proposal.  It encourages eligible inmates to follow the rules and develop patterns of appropriate behavior," Dipko said.  Felony sex offenders would not be eligible for the program, and those who are released early would have to serve the remainder of their sentence on extended supervision, he said."
State budget 'shares sacrifice' by taxing wealthy, holding school spending steady 
"Cutting $900 million from existing agency budgets, including a 1 percent across-the-board cut, and rejecting $1.8 billion from the amount those agencies sought in new spending. The cuts include closing three dozen Division of Motor Vehicle offices, two state trooper stations and 25 Department of Natural Resources offices and cutting state staff at welcome centers for tourists."
UW seeks help in Obama’s stimulus
"The stimulus package includes an increase in the maximum Pell Grant award, more money for work-study and more tax credits for students and families paying for tuition and other college-related costs such as textbooks, said David Giroux, spokesperson for the University of Wisconsin System."
Island 101: Highlighting the uniqueness that is Minocqua
"The mall area would also be a natural conduit for drawing visitors and residents to the Campanile Center for the Arts, the Minocqua Museum and the lakefront... "The idea is not to lose parking, but at the same time having an attractive walking and sitting area that leads to the Campanile, the museum and down to the lake," McCallum said."
Man held woman captive, read Bible - MSNBC
"He picked up the woman Wednesday night in Detroit after she told him she had nowhere to stay, and brought her to his home in Toledo, about 55 miles (88 kilometers) away, police told The Toledo Blade newspaper ... The woman told police that after she fell asleep Brisport handcuffed her wrists and ankles, gagged her, undressed her and put her in an adult diaper, then read Bible passages, said police Capt. Ray Carroll."
Hagan key in union fight... Raleigh News & Observer
""I campaigned and said all along that it allows the employees to make the choice," she said. "I also think it will help level the playing field."  Business groups have already hired two Raleigh political consulting firms and TV and radio ads are expected. Americans for Prosperity held rallies in Greensboro and Raleigh."
Where is Your Money Going?
"The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act will be carried out with full transparency and accountability -- and Recovery.gov is the centerpiece of that effort. In a short video, President Obama describes the site and talks about how you'll be able to track the Recovery Act's progress every step of the way."
S___w bankers BACK: switch to a credit union - Professor Smart ...
"Banks are owned by stockholders like any corporation, so if it can make money by screwing its customers, it will--and DOES with ridiculous overdraft charges, late fees, scam mortgages, and reduced in-person service.  Credit unions are owned by their member-customers and employees, so taking care of customers is taking care of owners."
[Although a little blue, this argument deserves to be heard. - Bob]

 

17 Feb

 
Hurley schools eye $129,000 budget deficit
"District administrator Chris Patritto on Monday presented two budget scenarios to the school board. Both project state aid reductions of 3.76 percent.  The first scenario predicts a deficit of $87,924 and the second one includes the $129,096 figure."
Monday school absentee rate high in Hurley
"With only a half day of school in the Hurley K-12 district Monday, 105 students were absent, the school board learned Monday... In contrast, 50 students were absent on Friday, with only two unexcused."
Regional final set for Park Falls
"The Hurley Midgettes won't have to travel too far should they advance to the WIAA Division 3 regional final on Feb. 28.  The final will be at Park Falls at 1 p.m., the WIAA announced Monday. The higher seed hosts games in the first two rounds.  The Midgettes start the regional at home Feb. 24 against No. 8 Bruce/Weyerhaeuser."
Low Turnout Expected for Tuesday Primary
"The top two vote-getters in today's primary will advance to face off in the April 7 general election.  While a number of local primaries are on the ballot, the superintendent of public instruction is the only statewide race."
Doyle to call for 75 cent hike in cigarette tax
"If approved by the Legislature, the increase would mean that the state tax on a pack of cigarettes would have tripled in the six years that the two-term Democratic governor has been in office – from 77-cents to $2.52. The $1 per pack increase – from 77-cents to $1.77 – approved two years ago cost smokers about $110 million more a year, according to the Legislative Fiscal Bureau."
Give this Wisconsin congressman a standing ovation
"But the NEA funds were retained, thanks in part to the energetic advocacy of Wisconsin north woods congressman David Obey. Let's remember that when the chips were down, a politician who represents a lot of deer and walleye stood up for artists."
Unpaid furloughs for Waukesha County employees might be considered
""With the bad economy, some of our revenue predictions from last year may not be accurate," she said. "The economic landscape has changed since then. We are aware we may have a problem that we won't make revenue and are looking at ways to adjust the budget.""
Hometown celebrates Kenseth Daytona win
"While Kenseth makes the national talk show rounds following Sunday's win at the Daytona International Speedway, his family and friends back home in Wisconsin are celebrating."
Wisconsin business lobby attacks proposed tax 
"One part that drew the ire of Wisconsin Manufacturers and Commerce, the state's largest business lobby, is a new tax on businesses that operate here but have their main office elsewhere.  The so-called combined reporting tax is expected to bring in more than $215 million by mid-2011."
Doyle to raise business taxes, warns of drastic budget cuts
"All totaled, Doyle's, proposals would slash $167 million from the current fiscal year projected deficit of $529 million, leaving a shortfall of $362 million. It would reduce the estimated general fund deficit by more than $700 million by the end of the 2009-11 biennium. The governor says the state is facing a $5.7 billion shortfall by June 30, 2011."
Boycott by Science Group Over Louisiana Law Seen as Door to Teaching Creationism - NY Times
"The group has more than 2,300 members, mostly academics who teach across the spectrum of biological sciences. It said its most recent convention, in Boston last month, brought together more than 1,800 scientists and graduate students for five days."
G.M. Presses Union for Cuts in Health Care - Southwest Florida Herald Tribune
"The plan will outline in considerable detail, over as many as 900 pages, how G.M. will further cut its work force, shutter more factories in North America and reduce its lineup of brands to just four, from eight, according to executives knowledgeable about its contents. The remaining core brands will be Chevrolet, Cadillac, GMC and Buick.  But G.M.’s plan to shrink its way to profitability will not mean much without an agreement with the U.A.W."
Pat Robertson denounces Rush Limbaugh’s comments: He’s ‘not exactly thinking rationally.’ - Think Progress
"Q: So you don’t subscribe to Rush Limbaugh’s “I hope he fails” school of thought?
ROBERTSON: That was a terrible thing to say. I mean, he’s the president of all the country. If he succeeds, the country succeeds. And if he doesn’t, it hurts us all. Anybody who would pull against our president is not exactly thinking rationally."
 

16 Feb

 
The Iron County Miner is going digital.
After 124 years of carbon based publishing, the Miner is about to enter cyber space.  So far they have sketched out a brochure site.  I look forward to seeing what they come up with.  A town without a local paper is a town without a soul.  I encourage all of you to give them an "atta boy" by calling 715-561-3405 ... and maybe telling them what you as web readers are interested in. - Bob

 

Obey, Doyle say stimulus package will prevent disaster
"Obey said the $789 billion package should be looked at as damage control that will “simply stave off the worst aspects of the recession.”"
Open enrollment period ends Feb. 20
Parents who want their children to attend school next year in a district other than the one in which they live have until next Friday, Feb. 20, to complete the state's open enrollment application.
DNR outdoor report - Ashland Daily Press
"Snowmobile trails are now closed in all but the most northern tier of counties and open trails were rated as poor in all but portions of Douglas, Iron and Marinette counties which continue to report good conditions,according to the Department of Tourism Snow Conditions Report."
B/G tops Tigers
"Butternut/Glidden shook off a 10-game losing streak with a 63-49 win over the Mercer Tigers in Indianhead Conference boys action Saturday."
Couple acquitted on all charges from stabbing
"It took a 12-person Iron County jury just more than 10 hours to acquit Leslie Ann Bradley and James E. Thomas of all charges stemming from the Oct. 12 stabbing of Chad Mathias Andert, 27."
Guard Send Off
"About 3,200 Wisconsin Army National Guard soldiers and their families will be honored during a noon ceremony at the Alliant Energy Center.  Gov. Jim Doyle, lawmakers, mayors and National Guard officials will take part in praising the soldiers for their sacrifices."
Nearly 900 sturgeon bagged opening weekend
"Amy Van Beek of Menasha speared a female sturgeon Sunday that was 80.8 inches and just under 170 pounds. That was the sixth longest fish, and the fourth heaviest, in the history of the Winnebago spear fishery."
Kenseth posts first Daytona 500 victory
"Running second, he stalked Elliott Sadler and finally dived to the inside at the start of the 146th lap. Kevin Harvick, the 2007 winner followed, and they swept by in Turn 1.  The pass was barely complete when Kenseth let out an anxious wail - "Rain, rain, rain, rain" - and seconds later a roof full of spotters yelled to their drivers, as well: "Yellow, yellow, yellow.""
Wis. program commits $10M to fight infant deaths
"The Wisconsin Partnership Program's efforts will concentrate on Milwaukee, Racine, Kenosha and Beloit. The four cities account for 92 percent of African-American infant deaths in Wisconsin.  Racine has the highest death rate, with 23 of every 1,000 African-American babies born there dying within a year."
Dave Zweifel's Plain Talk: Big Oil trots out another excuse
"Last week Big Oil claimed that since demand for gasoline has dropped so much because of the recession, refiners decided to scale back production. Other times, especially when all signs point to a sure drop in retail gas prices, a refinery just coincidentally needs to be shut down for maintenance."
State may push up licensing fees
"A plan was presented to lawmakers last week to increase the amount individuals pay in professional licensing fees, which would generate an additional $7.6 million in funding, the Wisconsin Department of Regulation and Licensing said Friday.  The raise in fees would apply to about 375,000 people in 128 different professions, ranging from lawyers and real estate agents to funeral parlor directors and veterinarians."
Liberty University disputing evolution - Lynchburg News & Advance
"“Which penguin gets eaten?” he asks. “The one that’s genetically inferior, or the one that’s in the wrong place at the wrong time?”  That element of chance, he argues, begins to unravel the idea of natural selection, or “survival of the fittest,” a key mechanism in the theory of evolution."
Unions feel betrayed by Obama - 103 JAMZ
"The newspaper said the labor movement, one of Obama's most important support backers, is feeling trepidation, with some union officials and their allies indicating frustration that Obama seemed to call for limits on "buy American" provisions in the recently passed economic stimulus bill."
Fox's Cameron still can't get his recovery act math right - Media Matters
"Cameron then aired a clip of Rep. Jerry Lewis asserting, "Only 11 percent of the appropriations in this bill would be spent by the end of '09, 47 percent would be spent by fiscal year '10, 53 percent would not be spent until after October of 2-11." In doing so, Cameron misleadingly suggested that Lewis had been discussing the entire recovery bill, when Lewis was discussing only the appropriations provisions in the bill. According to the CBO, 74.2 percent of the total package would be spent within 19 months."
Deliciously Gross Foods
 

14&15 Feb

 
Speech at Madison Square Garden (October 31, 1936)
Franklin Delano Roosevelt
- Miller Center for Public Affairs
  • "First, they sought escape from the personal terror which had stalked them for three years. They wanted the peace that comes from security in their homes: safety for their savings, permanence in their jobs, a fair profit from their enterprise. 
  • Next, they wanted peace in the community, the peace that springs from the ability to meet the needs of community life: schools, playgrounds, parks, sanitation, highways—those things which are expected of solvent local government. They sought escape from disintegration and bankruptcy in local and state affairs. 
  • They also sought peace within the Nation: protection of their currency, fairer wages, the ending of long hours of toil, the abolition of child labor, the elimination of wild-cat speculation, the safety of their children from kidnappers."

[I just thought we need to be reminded.  The audio file is also there. - Bob]

CONGRESS APPROVES ECONOMIC RECOVERY ACT
"“America faces the greatest crisis that we've seen in terms of our economy since the 1930's. We’ve had a virtual collapse and freeze up of the financial system and the credit markets. We’ve had a collapse of the housing sector in the economy and the auto sector of the economy. Consumer purchasing power is in decline, in the last four months the country has lost 2 million jobs and we are expected to lose another 3 to 5 million in the next year,” Obey said."

For A Detailed Summary Click Here

Jury to deliberate over weekend in stabbing trial
"Closing arguments in the joint trial of Leslie Ann Bradley, 40, and James E. Thomas, 37, charged in connection with the Oct. 12 stabbing of Chad Mathias Andert, 27, were completed Friday in Iron County Circuit Court.  The jury began deliberating Friday night in the case, but was unable to reach a verdict. They were to begin deliberating again Saturday at 9 a.m."
Midgets drop Eagles with balanced offense
"The Midgets (13-3, 11-2) led throughout, stretching their advantage from one point at the end of the first period to four points at halftime, then took a nine-point edge into the fourth quarter.  Dylan Laurin scored 20 points to pace Hurley, while Daulton Levra had just nine points but dished out a season-high 11 assists"
Digital TV Transition
"To make sure you're ready for the transition you need either a digital television or a digital converter box and Hazelquist recommends installing new ten foot uhf and vhf antennas. He says you can use rabbit ears, but those will only get you a couple of the channels."
Warm Temps Threaten Beloved Northwoods Event
"Barry Hopkins is a part of Sno-Skeeters Snowmobile Club, which hosted this year's Winterfest and he says only about 120 people registered for this year's ice fishing tournament, when there would normally be close to two hundred fishermen, but he is thankful for that many."
Experts: Spend tax refund wisely
"Although it might be tempting to use all of the money to pay medical or credit card bills, it's better to save some of the money and continue paying the monthly payments, unless the refund money would eliminate the debt in full, Hubert said. If you're left with the same monthly payment after you pay off some of the debt, it defeats the purpose."
Average state tax refunds up $12, to $655
"The overall e-filing rate so far this year is 93%, Iverson added. Taxpayers get their refunds much more quickly if they e-file, officials said.  In the state budget year that ends June 30, personal income taxes are expected to total about $4.02 billion, a 5.6% one-year drop because of the recession."
Group seeks driver certificates for illegal immigrants
""We're not talking about criminals here, but working people who need to drive to New Berlin and Mequon to clean buildings, or take a family member to the hospital and to do so safely and with insurance," said Tony Baez, president and CEO of the Council for the Spanish Speaking, another coalition member."
More than 500 sturgeon speared on opening day
"DNR biologist Ron Bruch said Saturday the one-day harvest total was 506 fish.  Fourteen fish weighed in at more than 100 pounds. The largest fish of the day was a 148-pound sturgeon, speared on Lake Poygan by Doug Koball of Elkhart Lake."
State to seeks extension on changes to sex offender registry
"Wisconsin Department of Corrections officials say they will likely have to add thousands of people to the list to comply with the Adam Walsh Child Protection and Safety Act.  The 2006 act requires the state to add juveniles to its online registry, add more details on offenders, and create classes of registrants who appear for different lengths of time. It sets a July 1 deadline for these changes."
DNA links hundreds of felons to unsolved crimes
"Wisconsin started requiring convicted felons to give up DNA samples in 2000. State Department of Justice figures show those submissions have yielded 1,796 hits in the national DNA database known as the Combined DNA Index System, or CODIS."
Mercury Marine, Ashley Furniture announce job cuts in Wis.
"Mercury Marine in Fond du Lac said Friday that 85 permanent job cuts have been made, and parts of the outboard motor manufacturer's plant will be on a two-week temporary shutdown starting Monday.  Human resources vice president Ray Atchinson said the moves are aimed at putting production capacity in line with demand."
Stimulus Bill Retains N.E.A. Funding - NY Times
"Arguing for the $50 million in arts money on the House floor on Friday, Representative David R. Obey, Democrat of Wisconsin, said: “You know what? There are five million people who work in the arts industry. And right now they have 12.5 percent unemployment — or are you suggesting that somehow if you work in that field, it isn’t real when you lose your job, your mortgage or your health insurance? We’re trying to treat people who work in the arts the same way as anybody else.”"
WHAT’S NEW Robert L. Park Friday, 13 Feb 09
  • DARWIN: HOMO SAPIENS EVOLVED IN A SAVAGE WORLD.
  • STRESSED: THE APE THAT TALKS OFTEN TELLS LIES.
  • WATERBOARDING: LEON PANETTA CONFIRMED TO HEAD THE CIA.
  • AUTISM: A SPECIAL FEDERAL COURT EXONORATES VACCINES.
  • CENSORSHIP: FIGHT FOR FREEDOM BY BANNING BOOKS?
Donors want financial transparency for churches - Assoc Press
""I'm not giving to pay some executives to pad their pockets," Young said. "I'm giving for people to do God's work. I don't think anybody needs to get paid half million or $1 million a year for running a 501c3 (nonprofit group). I think that would be excessive."  Last year, Iowa Republican Sen. Charles Grassley, a ranking member on the Senate Finance Committee, investigated six Christian broadcast ministries to find out if they were misusing their money or abusing their nonprofit status."
Fury over furloughs as people can't pay for tabs, permits  - Woodland Daily Democrat
"Californians survived the first day of a historic government shutdown Friday, as drivers stumbled into locked doors at DMV offices, workers' compensation claims adjustors stayed home and callers to the Paid Family Leave program tried in vain to reach live operators.  More than 200,000 state employees were ordered off the job amid a sweeping new furlough program."
Fox News’ Fact-Checker Unable To ‘Separate Fact From Fiction,’ Imagines ‘Phantom Earmarks’ - Think Progress
"Though the claim has been thoroughly debunked, House Republicans continued to attack it on the House floor yesterday. After “a testy exchange” over the fabrication between Rep. David Obey (R-WI) and House Republicans on the House floor yesterday, Fox News’ William Lajeunesse attempted to “separate fact from fiction”:.."

 

13 Feb

 
SHERMAN APPLAUDS GOVERNOR’S STIMULUS PLAN
“Taking these steps now will help put people back to work, which in the long run is the only time tested way to get our economy moving again,” said Sherman. “The Governor’s plan provides a framework for putting the first $300 million of federal stimulus funds to work right away, creating jobs and improving Wisconsin’s infrastructure. This economic crisis needs to be addressed now, before more people lose their jobs."
Special Report misrepresented Obey to advance health IT falsehood - Media Matters
"During the February 11 edition of Fox News' Special Report, correspondent James Rosen took comments he attributed to Rep. David Obey (D-WI) out of context to falsely suggest Obey claimed the economic recovery bill would bar doctors from prescribing what the federal government deemed to be less effective or too expensive medical treatments."
  • Saturday afternoon on WJMS the men and women of Gogebic Community College host Northland Baptist Bible College. The action kicks off at 12:50 with the pre-game show as Bill Swift brings you the stats and interviews on the upcoming game. The Lady Samsons tip off at 1 and at 3 the men look to defend their home court. Not only is Saturday special because it's Valentine's Day, but it's also GCC Youth Basketball Day. All area youth basketball players and coaches from elementary to high school will be admitted to the games free of charge! Come out to the Lindquist Center this Saturday to support your Gogebic Community College Samsons and Lady Samsons. If you can't make it to the game just keep your dial on AM-590 WJMS.
  • All this week on WJMS tune in for the Radio Auction. A complete list of items available can be found on the website www.wjmsam.com along with auction rules and information on when and how to pay for and pick up your items. Auction hours are M-F of this week and next from 9-11am and Saturday the 14th from 10-noon and will be simulcast on WJMS AM-590 and 99.7 The Storm WIMI.
Obey, Doyle say stimulus package will prevent disaster
"Wisconsin Congressman Dave Obey and Gov. Jim Doyle Thursday said the economic stimulus package hammered out between the House and Senate won’t cure the economic crisis or the state’s budget woes, but it should “stave off unmitigated disaster.”  Obey said the $789 billion package should be looked at as damage control that will “simply stave off the worst aspects of the recession.”"
Midgettes wrap up fourth straight IC title
"The Hurley Midgettes wrapped up their fourth straight Indianhead Conference girls basketball crown Thursday with a 60-23 victory over the Washburn Castle Guards.  Hurley (18-0 overall, 15-0 IC) remained unbeaten, and Mercer and Ashland stand in the way of a perfect regular season."
Cardinals topple Mercer
"Behind big games from Jacob Tuura and Derek Jardine, the South Shore Cardinals continued their strong play of late, downing the Mercer Tigers 62-52 in an Indianhead Conference boys basketball game Thursday night."
Fifth graders' gifts warm more than hearts
"The students divided into 14 groups of four and cut and pinned the fleece to make fleece tie blankets, no sewing required. The blankets were finished in one afternoon by 54 inspired students.  "This is what you want to see in a service learning project, to be kid-oriented and not teacher-led," Nasi said. "I'm so proud of them.""
Midgettes win Indianhead
"If Hurley beats host Mercer Thursday, the Midgettes will have gone undefeated in the conference three out of those four championship years.  "I think it says a lot about all the hard work these girls and their parents put in," Hurley coach Melissa Oja said."
South Shore drops shorthanded Tigers
"South Shore defeated shorthanded Mercer 62-54 in Indianhead Conference play on Thursday.  The Tigers (7-9, 4-9) played with only five varsity players and fell behind 30-20 by halftime."
DNR Warns About Thawing Ice As Temperatures Warm
"Department of Natural Resources recreational safety warden Jeff Dauterman says there's no such thing as safe ice, largely because many things affect its condition."
Wisconsin Stimulus
"Gov. Jim Doyle says Wisconsin stands to get around $3.5 billion under the federal stimulus package to help pay for education, health care, road projects and unemployment benefits."
Judge Declares Wisconsin's Minimum Markup Unconstitutional
"State law makes it illegal for retailers to sell gasoline without marking it up either 6 percent over what they paid or 9.18 percent over the average wholesale price, whichever is higher.  The 1939 law was intended to ensure fair competition and prevent larger companies from marking their gas down to drive smaller competitors out of business."
Obey: Stimulus will help
""It not only creates jobs directly, but by creating or preserving those jobs, you generate more revenues for state budgets, and you keep the economy from sagging further," said Obey, D-Wausau. "You help the economy to try to begin to turn around.""
Chief justice takes cash from lawyers she'll hear
"Abrahamson has not disclosed the donations from members of the Cannon & Dunphy law firm to parties in the case or recused herself. Her campaign acknowledged she attended a Milwaukee fundraiser last month with the lawyers and other supporters."
Stimulus bill includes tax credit for motorcycle purchases
""Like other struggling businesses, sluggish sales have led to job losses in the motorcycle industry and the dealerships that depend on it. We should do all we can to help Harley-Davidson weather this poor economy so they can boost sales and retain jobs," Sen. Herb Kohl (D-Wis.) said in a statement this morning."
University of Wisconsin-Madison virologist helps sequence genetic instructions for common cold
"Researchers at UW-Madison and other institutions have sequenced and analyzed the genetic instructions for the 99 known strains of rhinovirus, the most frequent cause of the cold.  The result: a textbook of viral vulnerabilities that could become targets for new drugs."
Freedom From Religion Foundation places ads in Madison buses 
"Except for one sign with a long quote from actress Katharine Hepburn, each of the signs bears the portrait of its quoted free-thinker.  Among them is Clarence Darrow, the celebrated attorney who represented John Scopes in the famous "Monkey trial" in Dayton, Tenn. "I don't believe in God because I don't believe in Mother Goose," Darrow says."
UW researcher discovers stem cells could fix heart
"In a step toward independence from embryonic stem cells, University of Wisconsin scientists have shown stem cells induced from human skin can form the cells essential to the makeup and function of the human heart."
Charter to file for Chapter Eleven
"Charter spokesperson Andy Brimmer said the company’s plan will have no effect on operations or service.  The pre-planned filing will allow the company to be out of bankruptcy within 120 days, Brimmer said, and will eventually allow Charter to extend its services."
Mississippi bank foreclosing on LdF investment property
"With the United States economy fighting through one of its worst credit crunches in history, cash flow issues with the Lac du Flambeau Tribe's investments are now threatening to halt a hotel and casino project in Mississippi - the same project the tribe, a partner in the venture, had been looking toward to add much-needed revenue to its operations."
A Hollywood Stimulus Plan: Make More Uplifting Movies - Wall Street Journal
"Once again, family-friendly, uplifting and inspiring movies drew far more viewers in 2008 than films with themes of despair, or leftist political agendas. Sex, drugs and antireligious themes were not automatic sellers, either. Among the 25 top-grossing movies alone, 14 out of 25 had strong or very strong Christian, redemptive and moral content, and nearly all had at least some such content."
Winds Power Jobs Out Paced Coal Power Jobs in 2008 - Head On Radio Network
"Wind industry jobs jumped to 85,000 in 2008, a 70% increase from the previous year, according to a report released Tuesday from the American Wind Energy Association. In contrast, the coal industry employs about 81,000 workers. (Those figures are from a 2007 U.S. Department of Energy report but coal employment has remained steady in recent years though it’s down by nearly 50% since 1986.) Wind industry employment includes 13,000 manufacturing jobs concentrated in regions of the country hard hit by the deindustrialization of the past two decades."
Clinton to face gay, union protest... SignOn San Diego
"Earlier Thursday, eight prominent supporters of organized labor and gay marriage, including San Diego City Councilman Todd Gloria, released an open letter to Clinton requesting that he call off or move the speaking engagement."
UN says Israel blocks most Gaza aid - Press TV (Iranian)
"The United Nations strives to provide relief to one million people daily inside a coastal sliver that is home to 1.5 million people, Ban said during a news conference on Tuesday.  Israel, however, is only allowing supplies enough for 30,000 people to get through and only from one crossing, he added."
 

12 Feb

 
BRUNSWEILER RIVER LEGISLATION HONORING MARTIN HANSON
"“With today’s vote on Assembly Bill 7, we are one step closer to confirming our stewardship responsibilities in a way that pays tribute to one of Wisconsin’s most passionate environmental leaders,” said Sherman.  The segment of the Brunsweiler River designated includes more than a ten mile stretch of the river that is within the Chequamagon-Nicolet National Forest. The section touches very few private parcels and is truly a remote and beautiful resource."
Local Sports Broadcasts on WJMS AM 590
  • Tonight on WJMS - the Red Devils have their hands full as the Ironwood girls host the undefeated and state ranked Houghton Gremlins. Sports Director Gary Aho calls tonight's game beginning at 6:15.
  • Friday night the Watersmeet Nimrods travel to Bessemer to take on the Speed Boys in a Porcupine Mountain Conference match-up. Pre-game at 6:50 on WJMS AM-590.
Injured logger transferred to UW-Madison hospital
"The Saxon, Wis., man who was severely injured when a tree fell on him Tuesday morning near Little Girl's Point has been transferred to a Madison hospital."
Hurley baseball benefit Feb. 28
"Proceeds will help the baseball team travel to the Metrodome in Minneapolis, where they will play Medford High School; and also help complete the Dug-Out Project for the baseball and softball fields. The cost is $10 for adults; $5 for children age 12 and under."
How Will You Benefit From The Economic Stimulus?
"Rick Zoerb is the president of the Northwoods Association of Realtors and says if the Senate's plan passes, home buyers could see green coming their way.  Rick Zoerb says "I feel it would benefit a home buyer in the fact that this is in essence free money from the federal governement.""
[And if you lost your job and house, how does this help you? - Bob]
Home foreclosure filed against state legislator
"The foreclosure filed by the Ohio-based Huntington Mortgage Group claims that Newcomer and his wife, Julianne, stopped making monthly payments on their mortgage in September and that the balance they now owe is $284,689, according to the lawsuit.  Newcomer said Wednesday that he was surprised to learn the company filed a foreclosure action."
Governor proposes plan to monitor child-care payments
""Significant concerns have been identified regarding reimbursement of child care providers for children who are not receiving child care or who have parents that may not be legitimately employed," Gov. Jim Doyle wrote in his proposal to legislators. "Additional resources are needed to expand and enhance state oversight of the subsidy program.""
Delay lets military health fraud suspects off hook
"Several of them had confessed to their roles in schemes in the 1990s and early 2000s in which they filed fraudulent claims to the military's Tricare program, which paid out money to cover health services never provided, court records show. They were indicted between 1999 and 2003 as part of an investigation into widespread Tricare fraud."
Plan would cut Wisconsin's current year budget shortfall of $600 million by $167 million
"Faced with a $600 million budget hole that must be closed by June, Gov. Jim Doyle and top lawmakers Wednesday unveiled only a partial fix of tax hikes and spending cuts, signaling they would use expected federal aid to cover much of the remaining gap...."
Diamond Bar church offers aid to octuplets' mom - Whittier Daily News
"The news comes days after reports emerged that Suleman had attended Calvary Chapel in the past.  "She is going through a great difficult time in her life, filled with a lot of anxiety, fear and a lot of stress," Wolins said. "All the ladies in the women's ministry here are just trying to fill a human need." "
Toyota workers seeking pay raise despite losses: report... MarketWatch
"The request marks the fourth straight year that the labor union has demanded a pay increase and comes after Toyota said earlier this month it expects an operating loss of 450 billion yen for the year ending March 31, its first since the 1930s. . The union demanded an increase of 1,500 yen a year earlier."
Thousands of Americans Abroad Got No Ballots - The Caucus
"A major problem, according to a separate survey by the Pew Center on the States, is that 16 states, plus the District of Columbia, send out absentee ballots after the date necessary for military voters to meet required deadlines, and three others allow a scant five-day cushion...  military voters from Alabama, which has been struggling to update its approach, sometimes had to wait 88 days."
Collins Strips Stim Bill Of Whistleblower Protections - TPM Muckraker
"More to the point, the protections were designed to encourage federal workers to point out cases where taxpayer money is subject to waste, fraud, or abuse -- a legitimate concern when Congress spends $800 billion, and one that centrists and Republicans have been particularly exercised about."
Thousands of Congressional Reports Now Available Online - Washington Post
"But on Monday, Wikileaks.org, an online clearinghouse for leaked documents, published thousands of previously unreleased CRS reports. At the same time, the group says it is on track to receive a steady stream of new reports, which it plans to feed to open government groups and directly to consumers via its Web site."
 

11 Feb

 
Saxon man severely injured in accident
"A Saxon, Wis., man was seriously injured when a tree fell on top of him Tuesday morning near Little Girl's Point.  Tom Moore, 46, was cutting firewood when the accident happened around 8:20 a.m., according to the Gogebic County Sheriff's Department."
Hurley moves forward with County D plan
"The Hurley City Council moved forward with plans to extend County Trunk D at its regular meeting Tuesday.  The council approved a $25,000 advance to MSA Professional Services for the preliminary design of the County Trunk D extension."
Testimony continues Wednesday in stabbing trial
"Testimony in the joint trial of Leslie Ann Bradley and James E. Thomas, each charged with attempted first-degree intentional homicide, party-to-a-crime, was scheduled to begin at 8:30 a.m. Wednesday in Iron County Circuit Court."
Chicken dinner set for Feb. 20
"The annual North Lakeland School eighth grade chicken dinner will be Friday, Feb. 20, from 5 to 8 p.m. at the school in Manitowish Waters."
  • Midgets win, grab share of IC lead
    "The win, coupled with Mellen's 52-49 win at Washburn on Tuesday, leaves the Midgets and Castle Guards deadlocked atop the Indianhead Conference with matching 10-2 records."
  • Midgettes clinch share of Indianhead
    "The Midgettes (17-0, 14-0) can secure the conference crown outright with a win against visiting Washburn on Thursday."

Sherman proposes constitutional amendment to end spring elections
"However, Democratic State Representative Gary Sherman of Port Wing says it's an outmoded tradition that should be set aside in favor of combining all of the state's political contests into the fall election. To that end, he has introduced a constitutional amendment to eliminate the spring election entirely."

Local Economic Stimulus Reaction
"Doyle says the nearly $20 billion difference between the two plans will hurt education and basic services, such as firefighting.  Here in the Northwoods people have mixed reactions on what an economic stimulus package would do."
Wis. Justice Department reorganizes bureaus
"The agency has folded its public integrity, drug and special assignment bureaus into a new field operations bureau. The gaming bureau, administrative services and investigative services bureaus will remain.  Agents who run DOJ's six field offices now supervise all operations conducted out of their offices. Before now, some agents in those offices have reported to supervisors in Madison."
Applications to University of Wisconsin-Madison down, first time in five years
"The reason why is still unclear, officials said, but it could be related to the slumping economy and a smaller class of high school graduates.  The total number of students who applied to UW-Madison dropped from a record high last year of 25,073 to 24,263 this year."
UW researchers turn biomass into biofuel
"Professor Ronald Raines of the biochemistry and chemistry departments and doctoral candidate Joseph Binder used a unique solvent process to dissolve cellulose, which enabled biomass material to be converted into the chemical 5-hydroxymethylfurfural (HMF), a biofuel that has the same energy content as gasoline."
Kohl, Feingold praise stimulus package 
""This bill provides both a short term boost for struggling families across the nation and tools for a more sustained, longer term recovery," Sen. Herb Kohl said after the Senate passed the bill. "We need to set the stage for recovery, knowing that it will be a multi-year process.""
  • Dems sort out budget repair
    "Specific measures include the long-publicized tax on hospital revenue, praised by Doyle and Democratic lawmakers as a way to receive more federal money to deal with the budget deficits and give more Medicaid reimbursement money to health care providers.  Another measure would end a tax break allowing companies based in other areas of the country to avoid paying taxes in the state."
  • Doyle’s office to forgo raises
Proposals compete as autism diagnoses grow
"Wisconsin's statistics mirror a national trend. While the total number of Wisconsin children aged 3-21 with disabilities rose only slightly between 2000 and 2007, from 125,358 to 128,536, or an increase of 2.5 percent, the number of children with autism jumped from 2,130 in 2000 to 5,635 in 2007, an increase of 164 percent."
GOP Utah gov says he supports civil unions - Assoc Press
""I had many discussions about Amendment 3 with many legal experts who informed me that individual rights, equal rights, could be taken up to the level of civil unions without compromising traditional marriage, which is something I believe in," Huntsman told The Associated Press in an interview. "I believe in the traditional definition of marriage, but I also believe that we can do a better job in enhancing equal rights for more of our citizens.""
The case against Hilda Solis is a war against labor - Buzz Flash
"But so far Republicans haven't been forced to say out loud what they're really thinking: Solis would be good for labor. She'd be good for workers and unions. And that's bad for the GOP."
Fox passes off GOP press release as its own research – typo and all
"In purporting to "take a look back" at how the economic recovery plan "grew, and grew, and grew," Fox News' Jon Scott referenced seven dates, as on-screen graphics cited various news sources from those time periods -- all of which came directly from a Senate Republican Communications Center press release. A Fox News on-screen graphic even reproduced a typo contained in the Republican press release."
 

10 Feb

 
Big Ice Golf hits Madeline Island Feb. 21
"Madeline Island hosts its fifth annual Big Ice Golf event from noon to 4 p.m. on Saturday, February 21. All proceeds benefit the La Pointe Fire Department. Eighteen local businesses have sponsored each of the course's nine holes.  Seventy-five participants teed it up last year, and ice road conditions are equally promising for this year's tournament."
Action Floor using waste wood to conserve energy
"Much of Action's equipment and inventory could be picked up and moved, Anderson noted, but the boiler -- three huge pieces set in place on a concrete slab by a crane before a 30-foot-high building was constructed around it -- is there to stay.  The computer-controlled, state-of-the-art boiler built in Canada replaces a 50-year-old boiler."
Hurley, Mellen girls postponed
"Monday's scheduled Indianhead Conference girls basketball game between Hurley and Mellen was postponed.  The Mellen School District had cancelled classes on Monday due to freezing rain and icy conditions."
Power Outages
"The outages are due to windy conditions and may be intermittent for many areas throughout the day.  Wisconsin Public Service has crews on the scene of the outages and is working to get power back on."
State Senate Passes Bill to Increase Minimum Wage
"Republicans and a variety of business groups opposed the increase from $6.50 to $7.60 an hour, which they say would put people out of work and hurt companies that don't have enough money to pay higher wages.  Democrats who supported it said it will put more money into the pockets of workers who are barely getting by.  "Either you stand with your friends and neighbors, or you stand with the big corporations," said Senate Majority Leader Russ Decker, D-Schofield, the bill's sponsor."
  • Doyle: Senate stimulus plan trims $593 million for state
    ""It doesn't make much sense to be working to put operating engineers and laborers to work on the roads, which is a very, very good thing and we really want that to happen, when on the other end you're laying off health care workers and teachers," Doyle told reporters after addressing the Wisconsin Counties Association."
  • Doyle seeks approval to extend SeniorCare
    "SeniorCare is scheduled to end Dec. 31. It is an alternative to Medicare Part D and the only program of its kind in the country.  The program has a $30 annual enrollment fee, a deductible tied to income and co-payments of $5 for generic drugs or $15 for brand drugs."
Doyle: Wis. would get $600M less under Senate plan
"Doyle said Tuesday that the difference will hurt education and basic services, such as firefighting.  He told the annual meeting of the Wisconsin Counties Association that he was "very discouraged" by the Senate bill. Doyle says he's been calling other governors to see what can be done to get some of the money restored."
State protects breast-feeding
"The Senate held a public hearing Monday to discuss the proposal that would prohibit others from harassing mothers who are breast-feeding in public or private areas. Violators of the law would face fines up to $200, according to Senate President Fred Risser."
Indulgences Return, and Heaven Moves a Step Closer for Catholics - NY Times
"The fact that many Catholics under 50 have never sought one, and never heard of indulgences except in high school European history (Martin Luther denounced the selling of them in 1517 while igniting the Protestant Reformation), simply makes their reintroduction more urgent among church leaders bent on restoring fading traditions of penance in what they see as a self-satisfied world."
Calif. governor sues to furlough more workers - MSNBC
"Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger sued the state's Democratic controller Monday, trying to force furloughs for 15,000 more government workers to address California's $42 billion deficit.  The Republican governor already ordered more than 200,000 state government workers to take two days off each month without pay and projected it would save $1.3 billion through June 2010. The first furlough day was last Friday."
red states get way more federal money than blue states - BuzzFlash
"The states that voted for Barack Obama clearly have been neglected when it comes to federal funds vs. taxes sent to Washington. This stimulus package can do a lot toward making those numbers a bit more balanced. And the ones who are already getting the money are standing in the way."
Injured Deer Stumbles Into Ohio Vet Clinic - CBS News
"Manager Trudi Urie says the wounded doe was hanging out behind the store and then ran through an open door into a stockroom.  Staff members made sure the animal couldn't enter the shop area and called police and a veterinarian."
 

09 Feb

 
Bill Aimed at Property Tax Relief
“It seems that every special interest group in Wisconsin has found a way around the Uniformity Clause, while homeowners have been left bearing the largest burden of property taxation,” Sherman said. “It is time that those who are struggling to hang onto their homes were given the support that they deserve.”
Jury selection to begin in stabbing trial
"Jury selection in the joint trial of Leslie Ann Bradley, 40, of Hurley, and James E. Thomas, 37, of Racine, Wis., will begin at 10 a.m. on Tuesday in Iron County Circuit Court. Both are charged with attempted first-degree intentional homicide."
DNR issues air-quality watch for entire state
"Elevated levels of fine particles in the air from combustion sources such as power plants, factories, vehicle exhaust and wood burning is the reason for the watch, according to the DNR."
Federal aid sought for 5 Wis. school districts
"A Wisconsin union official has asked the federal government to help out five school districts that have lost millions of dollars in bad investments.  The Kenosha, Kimberly, Waukesha, West Allis-West Milwaukee and Whitefish Bay school districts bought $200 million worth of collateralized debt obligations in 2006."
Doyle: No coal at UW by 2012
"A biomass boiler will be installed by 2012, which will produce 250,000 tons of biomass each year, supplying UW with steam for heating and cooling, according to a statement from Doyle.  The boiler will help the state reach its goal of having 25 percent of Wisconsin’s energy produced by renewable resources by the year 2025. "
State to borrow $400 million for unemployment
"Due to the rising number of citizens seeking unemployment insurance benefits, the Department of Workforce Development announced its plan to borrow $400 million from the Federal Unemployment Fund Friday.  DWD also plans to hire 83 additional employees to deal with the increase in unemployment claims."
Economic downturn drives staffing, program cutbacks at Conserve School
"According to Associated Press coverage in the Chicago Tribune, officials at the private college-preparatory boarding high school notified Wisconsin Department of Workforce Development officials of their plans for a mass layoff of 32 Conserve employees, starting March 31."
Bangladesh: Muslim Pilgrims Beat Bible Student - Compass Direct
"Rajen Murmo, 20, a student at Believers’ Church Bible College, was distributing the 32-page books among Muslims near the school along with 25 other students in Uttara town in northern Dhaka, just a few kilometers from the banks of a river in Tongi, where the government claimed 4 million Muslim pilgrims had gathered."
US IT unions lash out at offshoring to India... ITExaminer.com
"Alliance for IBM, a union of technology workers at Big Blue, has been voicing its displeasure over the company's 2,800 job cuts, announced recently. The Washington Alliance of Technology Workers is running a similar campaign. The national coordinator of the Alliance, Lee Conrad, said, "The Alliance is strongly urging IBM not to go forward with a new round of job cuts and to stop the off-shoring of US workers’ jobs."  IBM India has a huge strength of more than 70,000 professionals, likely to increase it further."
Jury Nullification : Peers Refuse to Convict Disabled Vet in Pot Bust - The Rag Blog
"The 59-year-old was arrested after officers from a state "drug task force" found 25 pounds of pot and 50 pounds of growing plants in his home in 2007. The Vietnam veteran walks with a cane, has bad knees and feet and says he uses marijuana to relieve body pain, as well as to help cope with post traumatic stress."
What the centrists have wrought - Paul Krugman Blog - NYTimes.com
"Now the centrists have shaved off $86 billion in spending — much of it among the most effective and most needed parts of the plan. In particular, aid to state governments, which are in desperate straits, is both fast — because it prevents spending cuts rather than having to start up new projects — and effective, because it would in fact be spent; plus state and local governments are cutting back on essentials, so the social value of this spending would be high. But in the name of mighty centrism, $40 billion of that aid has been cut out."
 

07&08 Feb

 
Midgets stop Trollers in Indianhead battle
"Hurley (11-3, 9-2) is a game behind Washburn in the conference standings after beating the Castle Guards on Thursday. The Midgets put the Trollers away by doubling them up, 20-10, over the final eight minutes on Friday."
Tigers fall to Drummond
"The Drummond Lumberjbacks pulled away from the Mercer Tigers in the fourth quarter Friday, outscoring the visitors 18-2 over the final eight minutes for a 50-33 victory on Friday."
Jauch: Budget deficit solution will require cuts, taxes
"State Sen. Bob Jauch, D-Poplar, said Friday he “doesn’t see how an increase in taxes can be avoided” when it comes to putting together a state budget facing a projected $5.7 billion deficit. Wisconsin’s deficit is the fourth largest in the nation when looking at the deficit to budget ratio with a 20 percent deficit, he said."
  • Midgettes trounce B/G, close in on another title
    "Jesse Mackey and Brittany Czerneski each had 13 points to lead Hurley past Butternut/Glidden 68-41. The Midgettes are now 13-0 in the conference and have a two-game lead on Butternut/Glidden (11-2 IC) with three conference games to play."
  • Hurley hands Guards first IC loss
    "Unable to find the range throughout their Indianhead Conference make-up game with the Midgets, Washburn played from behind and never was able to catch up. That wound up costing the Guards their first loss in IC play, as Hurley notched a 35-29 win in boys basketball action."
  • Midgets stop Trollers in Indianhead battle
    "Daulton Levra scored a game-high 27 points for Hurley, while Dylan Laurin chipped in with 13 points and Mike Leinon added 11. D.J. Bressler had 22 points for Bayfield and Kurtis Gordon and Faron Beaulieu tossed in 13 apiece."
  • Tigers fall to Drummond
    "The Drummond Lumberjbacks pulled away from the Mercer Tigers in the fourth quarter Friday, outscoring the visitors 18-2 over the final eight minutes for a 50-33 victory on Friday."
Merrill School Layoffs
"School district officials say the majority of the district's difficulties stem from structural problems with the state's school funding formula. They say state-imposed revenue caps are increasing at a lower rate than state imposed minimums on salaries and benefits, inflation, and state and federally-mandated programs."
DNR issues air quality alert for area
"The state Department of Natural Resources has issued an air-quality watch for the entire state starting at 12:01 a.m. and running through 11 p.m. Monday... People in sensitive health groups are advised to reschedule or limit strenuous activities.
200 wild turkeys poisoned in Oconto County, DNR says
"The DNR said it has identified the person believed to have killed the turkeys, which were found in a wooded area near a farm in north central Oconto County. Wardens responded after receiving information from the DNR's tip line."
Some lawmakers received more than $10,000 in per diems
"Legislators who live outside Dane County can claim $88 per day when on official business in Madison; legislators from Dane County can claim $44 per day. Expense payments are separate from their salaries, which were about $47,000 last year and $49,000 this year."
Most local stations going ahead with digital TV transition
"The Federal Communications Commission says 61 percent of TV stations (1,089) should be able to turn off their analog signal before June 12 if they choose without causing interference to other stations, and "most" of the remaining 700 or so stations "may" also be able to do so, Multichannel.com reported."
Doyle doesn't sign 'Reagan Day' proclamation
"Wisconsin Gov. Jim Doyle was one of only a handful of governors to deny recognition of the late president, according to the Ronald Reagan Legacy Project based in Washington D.C.  "By refusing to honor President Reagan, Gov. Jim Doyle has put pusillanimous petty partisanship above patriotism," said Grover Norquist..."
WHAT’S NEW Robert L. Park Friday, 06 Feb 09 Washington, DC
  • IRAN: SATELLITE DOESN’T HAVE THE IMPACT OF SPUTNIK.
  • OPENNESS: OBAMA WILL NAME A CHIEF TECHNICAL OFFICER.
  • WARPED SCIENCE: "FRONTIERS OF PROPULSION SCIENCE."
  • FISH STORY: JAPANSE TRAWLERS ENCOUNTER "PEAK FISH."
  • ALTERNATIVE MEDICINE: COVERED BY HEALTH CARE REFORM?
Legal questions remain as Obama overhauls faith-based effort - Pew Forum
""The goal of this office will not be to favor one religious group over another -- or even religious groups over secular groups," Obama said at the National Prayer Breakfast Thursday, where he announced the new office.  "It will simply be to work on behalf of those organizations that want to work on behalf of our communities, and to do so without blurring the line that our founders wisely drew between church and state.""
Communications Workers of America authorizes strike of 20,000 AT&T workers, could happen soon... Engadget
"It's been a little under the radar, but AT&T Mobility's been in contract talks with the Communications Workers of America on behalf of some 20,000 unionized workers, and things haven't been going so well -- in fact, the CWA just voted to authorize a strike if upcoming negotiations don't improve. The union's current contract actually expires tonight at midnight, but the strike won't take place until the union's executive board approves and the CWA president sets a date."

 

06 Feb

 
HURLEY CITY COUNCIl - 10 Feb 2009
  • Board of Public Works – 6:00 P.M.
  • Police, Fire & License Committee
  • Finance Committee
  • City Council Meeting - 6:30 P.M.
Reminder:
Saturday afternoon Gogebic Community College Samson and Lady Samsons v the Buccaneers of UW-Marinette.
Nelson to be cut from Tent Show broadcasts
"Mike Crane, WPR's acting director and chief operating officer, said Thursday the show will be re-cut with an alternate host, and an edited version could appear as early as Saturday. Crane said while Tent Show's producers, Big Top Chautauqua, made the decision to cut Nelson from the broadcasts, it "mirrors" what he would have done."
Authorities warn of telephone scam
""When requested to dial 90#, you give the requesting party full access to your telephone line which enables that party to place long-distance calls billed to your home phone number," Bruneau said in a Thursday morning sheriff's department report."
Injured snowmobiler airlifted to Duluth
"A 45-year-old Beaver Dam, Wis., man was life-flighted to St. Mary's Hospital in Duluth following a snowmobile accident near Iron Belt Wednesday afternoon."
  • Midgettes blast B-G
    "The Hurley Midgettes improved to 16-0 and took a significant step toward the Indianhead Conference title with a 68-41 win over Butternut-Glidden Thursday night."
  • Midgets hand first IC loss to Washburn
    "The Hurley Midgets pushed their way back into the Indianhead Conference race Thursday night with a big defensive effort in a 35-29 win over the Washburn Castle Guards."
Water Pipeline
"The city of Wausau is exploring whether to sell its water to communities up to 35 miles away through a new multimillion-dollar pipeline.  Officials say the pipeline would cost between $20 million and $30 million and the money would come from the benefiting communities, grants or federal stimulus funds."
Avalanche of job losses burying U.S., state
"Meantime, Wisconsin continues to receive record volumes of new claims for unemployment insurance and has been beefing up staff and extending hours to handle applications.  "The volume is absolutely unprecedented," said Roberta Gassman, secretary of the Wisconsin Department of Workforce Development."
Final approval granted for second-term abortions at UW-owned surgery center
"The services are intended to replace second-trimester abortions previously offered by physician Dennis Christensen, who retired from Madison Abortion Clinic in December 2008.  The vote of the six-member board was the final approval needed for the program. It is not yet known when the services will be available for patients."
UW System suspends payments from 30 endowments
"System President Kevin Reilly said Friday the move will mean $700,000 in reduced payments for scholarships, projects and other initiatives.  He says the value of all 30 endowments have dipped below their original values. He says suspending the payments makes sense to protect the funds for the long-term rather than erode the principal."
Alfalfa sprouts recalled after positive salmonella test 
"Jack & the Green Sprouts, Inc., from River Falls, Wis. recalled alfalfa sprouts and alfalfa onion sprout mix -- both sold in 5-ounce clamshell packages -- from retail stores and wholesalers in Minnesota and Wisconsin.  There have been no reports of illness so far, but the Wisconsin Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection advises consumers to discard any Jack & The Green Sprouts alfalfa sprouts or alfalfa onion sprout mix purchased before Feb. 5."
University drops apparel contract
"“We as a university and many other organizations were concerned that freedom of association issues played a part [in the closure],” said special assistant to the Chancellor for Community Relations Dawn Crim. “When we have a relationship with our licensees, we have expectations that we will be able to work together and work through issues like these. We still have yet to do that.”"
Faith-Based Program Gets Wider Focus  - Wall Street Journal
"The office will be given four specific missions, including an administration effort to reduce teen pregnancy and reduce the need for abortion. The goals, Mr. DuBois said, will include ensuring access to health care and support for adoption.  The office also will also be asked to encourage interfaith dialogue "at home and, more pressingly, abroad," he said. He said the president he won't necessarily single out any particular part of the world, but clearly outreach to Muslim nations will be part of the mix."
Wanted: Personal Economic Trainers. Apply at Capitol. - Washington Post
"Spending is stimulus, no matter what it's for and who does it. The best spending is that which creates jobs and economic activity now, has big payoffs later and disappears from future budgets. "

 

05 Feb

 
E-TC boys invade Ironwood.  Pre-game at 6:15
"Saturday afternoon on WJMS, it's college basketball from Gogebic Community College as the Samson and Lady Samsons host the Buccaneers of UW-Marinette.  The Ladies tip off at 1, the men at 3.  Joe Rimkus and Gary Aho will be calling all the action from the Lindquist Center this Saturday on WJMS.  Following the games, the GCC Boosters will be hosting a gathering at the Olde Suffolk Ale House in downtown Ironwood.  Tickets are $10 and includes appetizers, a cash bar, and raffles for GCC Merchandise."
Level of Lake Superior holding steady
"While Lake Superior is still 8 inches below its long-term average, it still is 2 inches higher than this time last year, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers announced Monday.  The lake also dropped by 2 inches in January, but normally falls by 3 inches, the Corps said."
Windt scores 1,000th point
"Kayla Windt topped the 1,000-point mark Tuesday night in the Hurley Midgettes' 92-15 victory over the South Shore Cardinals in Indianhead Conference girls basketball action.  Windt entered the game with 984 points, and she scored 17 to now stand at 1,001 for her career."
Citizen group seeks to halt Shadow Wood Landing development
"According to a news release issued by the committee, its members oppose the project because of objections to what the release called "spot zoning" and cited dangers of noise, pollution and impacts on the neighboring fruit growing district as well as stress on Town services, and the effects of runoff, sewage and chemicals on the headwaters of Pikes Creek."
School Finance Network
"Tom Beebe says "Nobody is fooled when you say it comes from the state. If it comes from the state it comes from the taxpayers of the state."  So if your property taxes won't go up with this plan, what will? Services like haircuts, lawyer fees, and dog grooming that don't have sales tax now will. Critics say one glaring problem with this plan is the state is in debt, so if they're able to bring in more money through new sales tax, they might not be quick to hand it over to public schools."
CT3 to build spinal cord injury facility at VA hospital
"It will replace the current unit, which was originally designed for general medicine and has limited space. Spinal cord patients require more space than other patients.  Construction of the facility, which will take around two years, could begin this spring, said Jim Hubbell, vice president of CT3 Construction. The firm focuses on providing construction services for federal government projects."
Board gives its OK for second-trimester abortions at UW-owned surgery center
"The final decision on the proposed clinic will be made by the Madison Surgery Center board of directors within the next week or so.  The Madison Surgery Center, owned by UW Hospital and Clinics, Meriter Hospital and the UW Medical Foundation, would provide abortion services for women who are 13 to 22 weeks pregnant to help meet demand after a physician who used to perform such abortions in Madison retired late last year. "
Build on small step toward reform in Wisconsin Assembly
"You're off to a strong start in stressing the need for good government reforms. Go ahead and adopt an Assembly rule banning fundraising during the state budget process today.  But don't stop there.  Pass a bill to the same effect and send it to the stubborn Senate, where pressure can build for action on a permanent ban -- one affecting all future state budgets, every state lawmaker and the governor."
Warmer weather means farmers need to heed field runoff 
"Dane County officials are warning farmers to be careful when applying manure this weekend since temperatures are supposed to climb to the mid-40s and rain could be on the way, making for ideal conditions for manure runoff from frozen fields.  Manure runoffs caused major problems in 2005, when hundreds of fish were killed in the Sugar River and phosphorus nutrients were loaded into Lake Mendota because of manure washing off fields into waterways."
Doyle delays budget release
"The budget will now be introduced Feb. 17 instead of its previously scheduled date of Feb. 10, while the BadgerChoice program will have to wait for an improved economic climate, according to Doyle’s spokesperson Carla Vigue.  According to Vigue, the governor decided to wait to present his proposal until he knows the specifics of any stimulus funds the state may receive from the federal American Recovery and Reinvestment Act."
In Depth: Nanotechnology vs. Religion
"According to the study, more than 70 percent of those polled in the United States did not think nanotechnology was morally acceptable. They also did not approve of nanotechnology being used “under any circumstance” or only approved of it “under very special circumstances.”  Of the 30 percent who found nanotechnology morally acceptable, 90 percent of them approved of nanotechnology “as long as the usual levels of government regulations are in place” or “if it is more tightly regulated.”"
Sharing work, saving jobs... Times Union
"A swimming pool manufacturer here has found a way to avoid laying off employees by taking advantage of a little-known state program that allows workers to share jobs while collecting unemployment benefits for the days they don't work.  New York is one of 17 states offering the Shared Work Program, under which employers can reduce hours for a group of workers so they all can stay on the job. The workers receive partial unemployment insurance benefits for the days they're idle."
Ky. halts FEMA meals that may use tainted peanuts - AP
"The Federal Emergency Management Agency says some emergency meal kits for storm victims in Kentucky and Arkansas may include packets of peanut butter that are part of a national recall over possible salmonella contamination."
[Let me get this straight... a winter storm,  a week without power, and now FEMA emergency rations may have salmanella... Good Job, Brownie. - Bob]
NJ Township Can't Declare Inflatable Rat A Pest - CBS News
"In a case that pitted an International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers union local against a central Jersey town, the high court ruled unanimously that the rodent is protected speech under the First Amendment.  "The township's elimination of an entire medium of expression without a readily available alternative renders the ordinance overbroad," Justice John E. Wallace Jr. wrote for the court."
 

04 Feb

 
Contractors prepare for anticipated roadwork
"Viking Explosives and Supply Inc., of Reedsburg, filed notices of blasting with both the Iron County Sheriff's Department and the Hurley Police Department.  The Wisconsin Department of Commerce, Safety and Buildings Division, Inspection and Safety Support Section requires the notices be filed annually."
After lull, Wisconsin snowmobile deaths return
"None of the four most recent fatal accidents were in northern Wisconsin counties. That's a reflection that southern and central Wisconsin snowmobilers are staying closer to home to hit the trails, as there has been ample snowfall throughout the state."
  • Midgettes smash Cardinals
    "Windt scored 17 points in the Indianhead Conference home win. She stands at 1,001 points.  She also tallied 12 assists in a double-double effort."
  • Speedgirls slow Tigers
    "The Tigers (4-10) kept it close in the first half, as the Speedgirls (8-5) led 18-13 at halftime. But Bessemer pulled away after the intermission break, outscoring Mercer 26-8 over the final two periods."
  • Tigers rally to down Loggers 58-52
    "The Mercer Tigers erased a nine-point halftime deficit en route to a come-from-behind 58-52 win over the Phillips Loggers on Tuesday night."
Extra Funding for Crandon School District 
"The way the act stands now Crandon would receive more than 750 thousand dollars.  Dr. Peters says the school is in desperate need of those dollars.  If Crandon does receive the money the government has mandated it be spent on special education, assisting children who are behind in reading and math, and on moderinizing the school building itself. "
After complaint, Dodge County drops prayer at meetings
"Fuller says his personal beliefs have nothing to do with it and that his stance on the prayer that's "clearly unconstitutional" didn't go over well with fellow board members.  County Administrator Jim Mielke says the prayer at the beginning of board meetings has been a tradition for years and was previously done by clergy from various denominations."
We Energies coal dust silo explosion injures 6 workers
"Four employees were inside the 65-foot-tall structure and two outside when the explosion occurred, said a We Energies spokesman. A doctor said a 43-year-old man pulled his son, 22, and at least one other co-worker to safety."
Proposed Madison abortion clinic will meet a true health-care need, some doctors say
""Unfortunately, some women don’t find out that there is a lethal anomaly or other problems with their fetus until quite late," said Dr. Julie Fagan, a women’s health specialist at University of Wisconsin Hospital... "It’s illogical that if something is life-threatening, you’re going to schedule it as an outpatient," said Dr. Karla Dickmeyer, an obstetrician-gynecologist at Meriter Hospital."
Influential conservative groups say they won't be running ads for Koschnick 
"Abrahamson is on track to raise record amounts of cash for a Supreme Court candidate; she's already brought in $822,000. Koschnick has raised just under $15,000, according to his campaign finance report filed Monday. He would need the help of outside groups to even the score."
Diverse group to advise faith-based office - Associated Press
"According to the religious leader, the advisory group is a mix of leaders from the religious and secular world who have experience in social services. The group will convene at least twice a year."
Judge tells MeadWestvaco paper mill unions to hold new election... Roanoke Times
"But the text of the ruling by Administrative Law Judge Eric Fine suggests that in September 2007 MeadWestvaco's "interests were clearly aligned with the CPU which was not seeking some of the contract provisions sought by the USW, which the employer found objectionable.""
ABC's Gibson falsely claimed "CBO says only 25 percent" of recovery bill "would get to people within a year" - Media Matters
"In fact, in its analysis of the version of the bill introduced in the Senate, the CBO -- which releases its calculations based on the federal government's accounting period, in which a "fiscal year" begins on October 1 -- estimated that, including both increased spending and decreased revenue from tax relief, 26 percent of the bill would be spent before the end of September 2009, less than eight months from now, and 78 percent would be spent by the end of fiscal year 2010."
Calvin and Hobbes on the mentality of the modern CEO
[This dates back to the 1990's but really explains what's happening now. - Bob]
 

03 Feb

 
Elimination of spring elections promotes democracy
“It is not particularly democratic to have important public offices, such as those for the highest court in the state, be decided with less than 20% of the citizenry casting a ballot,” Sherman said. “By holding all elections together in the fall, all elected offices will receive the attention they deserve.”
Iron County jobless rate highest in state
"The employment picture darkened across northern Wisconsin in December, according to the latest figures provided by the Wisconsin Department of Workforce Development.  Iron County's unemployment rate jumped to 10.7 percent, the highest in the state. It was 9.1 percent in November and 8.4 percent a year ago."
Mercer man acquitted of sexual assault
"It took a six-man, six-woman jury about two and one-half hours to acquit a 41-year-old Mercer man of two felony counts of second-degree sexual assault of a child during last week's two-day trial in Iron County Circuit Court."
Midget's rout Solon Springs
"Brittany Czerneski led Hurley (14-0, 11-0 Indianhead Conference) with 19 points and Jeanna Aijala had 11 on a night when the Midgettes were able to try some different personnel combinations, including having four freshmen and a sophomore on the floor for extended periods."
Local grocers not immune from peanut product recall
"County Market and Wal-Mart in Ashland, and the Washburn IGA, have all pulled products from their shelves linked with the Georgia processing plant at the heart of a salmonella outbreak that has sickened more than 500 people and is responsible for at least eight deaths."
Hurley pounds Eagles
"The Hurley Midgettes turned up the defense Monday night and remained unbeaten with a 75-18 victory over the Solon Springs Eagles in Indianhead Conference girls basketball action."
Big Top Chautauqua founder Nelson faces sexual assault charges
"According to Bayfield County District Attorney Craig Haukaas, Nelson faces criminal accusations of second-degree sexual assault and aggravated battery. Formal charges on those accusations are scheduled to be presented by Haukaas in Bayfield County Circuit Court at 9 a.m. on February 24 at an initial hearing."
Madison biotech creates bacteria-resistant skin substitute
"Stratatech Corp. said this morning it has genetically modified its skin substitute product so it can fight bacterial infections that routinely develop at the site of burns and other severe skin injuries like skin ulcers.  The Madison company used a non-viral carrier to help the substitute skin fight bacteria, and said it believes this is the first time such an approach has been successful without viruses."
Ads knock Sensenbrenner's vote against stimulus plan
"Sensenbrenner, who once served as the chairman of the House Judiciary Committee, no longer wields the power he used to when Republicans were in charge of Congress and Democrats are hoping he decides to retire after more than three decades in the House.  Asked whether the ads may help nudge him toward retirement, Sensenbrenner recounted a legendary story about the Battle of the Bulge during World War II."
Coalition forms to increase Wis. school aid
"Pushing for more school aid will be difficult given that Gov. Jim Doyle and the Legislature are looking to cut spending to deal with a projected $5.7 billion budget shortfall."
Gov. Doyle raised $1.5 million in 2008 
"A report Doyle filed Monday shows he raised $622,000 in the last six months of the year. That is down from the $905,000 he raised in the first half of 2008.  But the Democratic Doyle spent much of the later part of the year campaigning for others, most notably President Barack Obama."
UW leads fight against pet cancer
"In December, the University of Wisconsin System Board of Regents authorized the construction of a $3.5 million addition to the UW School of Veterinary Medicine. The addition will house a TomoTherapy unit, a radiation therapy system developed at UW."
Minimum mark-up for gas survives legal challenge
"The minimum markup statute effectively requires retailers to sell gasoline at least 9.18 percent above the local wholesale price. However, as both a federal judge stated in declaring the law unconstitutional in a separate case and the Federal Trade Commission observed to the Legislature in 2003, the "local wholesale price," as the statute defines it, may bear no resemblance to the actual and often lower wholesale price retailers pay."
Do Obama's nods to non-believers signal turning tide for U.S. atheists? - The Canadian Press
"Three years after a high-profile University of Minnesota study found that atheists outranked Muslims and new immigrants as the most distrusted and despised minority in America, it seems little has changed in a country where 92 per cent say they believe in God."
GM offers buyouts to all hourly workers... CNN Money
"The GM (GM, Fortune 500) offer, which takes effect Friday, is less lucrative than the deal proposed by Chrysler, or even offers that GM has made to its hourly staff in the past. The automaker will give most of its 62,000 U.S. hourly workers $20,000, as well as a voucher good towards the purchase of a GM car worth $25,000."
Taking Stock Of The Daschle Charges - TPM Muckraker
"Perhaps more important, Daschle's coziness with corporate interests, many of whom will have key business before Congress and the Obama administration, could complicate the larger task of reducing the influence of the private sector in Washington."
 

02 Feb

 
Ashland residents warned against feeding deer
"Wildlife biologists say that feeding stations quickly entice deer to congregate where the food is. Such concentrations can be devastating for all the shrubbery in the neighborhood, as large numbers of hungry deer can quickly reduce much expensive landscaping to the stumps. Deer wandering neighborhood streets can also present a substantial traffic hazard, especially at night."
Mercer takes down Granite Diggers in overtime, 67-65
"Mellen fell into a first-half hole in their Indianhead Conference game with Mercer, as the Tigers set up a 13-point lead. While the Granite Diggers pulled back to even, they couldn’t finish the job as Mercer emerged with a 67-65 overtime victory in their boys basketlball game."
Notification
"Even though it appears Congress will pass the DTV Extension Bill, WJFW-TV will be ceasing its analog transmission on February 16th, 2009 at midnight. If you have any questions or comments call the station at 715-365-8812 or email dtvquestions@wjfw.com "
Fewer Deer Donations
"Laurie Fike of the state Department of Natural Resources says hunters donated about 5,300 deer to a statewide program that distributes ground venison to food pantries to give away.  That's 40 percent fewer than last year."
New Web site to help firms manage their state tax accounts
"Through My Tax Account, businesses can electronically file tax returns, make payments, update account information and view past correspondence with the agency. Once registered, businesses can also authorize their tax representatives to manage accounts online."
Foreclosure filings surge again in January
"A total of 2,635 foreclosure filings were recorded in January in Wisconsin, according to ForeclosureAlarm, a Madison-based foreclosure data company.  January was the second highest month since the company started compiling foreclosure filings in 2005."
Snowmobilers want to ride to school
"The student parking lot at the high school in Mazomanie could be filled with snowmobiles if the school board approves.  About 20 families in the Wisconsin Heights School District are asking the board to allow students to ride snowmobiles to school."
Abortion issue sparks protest
"The two sides met after anti-abortion activists gathered at Library Mall to listen to speakers. The group then proceeded to march down Lake Street to the MSC, where they met abortion rights supporters.  The two groups chanted back and forth across Regent Street for about 45 minutes before dispersing."
A debate over ABC Family values - Los Angeles Times
"ABC Family's strategy casts a new light on the traditional Disney brand, which historically has mined such tales of youthful innocence as "The Little Mermaid" and "The Parent Trap" to win over generations of viewers. The approach has paid off. ABC Family's ad revenue and ratings have been on the rise, making 2008 its best year."
WHAT’S NEW Robert L. Park Friday, 30 Jan 09
  • CTBT: THE MOST IMPORTANT TREATY ON EARTH.
  • ACUPUNCTURE: IF YOU DON’T REALLY HURT IT MIGHT HELP.
  • BEYOND BUSH: THE FIRST TRIAL OF EMBRYONIC STEM CELLS.
  • MINNESOTA ELECTION: SENATE SEAT IS STILL AT STAKE.
Dangerous Masquerade - Ms. Magazine
"Bills currently on hold in the U.S. House and Senate would prevent CPCs from using deceptive advertising. But the most important piece of action, says Smith of SIECUS, will be ending the “gravy train” of federal money that has been funneled into CPCs under the Bush administration."
$3 Million for Super Bowl Ad. $3 for Workers Who Paid For It - AFL-CIO Now
"Saying the workers live in modern-day slavery, he explained that rubber tappers work 14 hours a day and must tap 750 rubber trees and accumulate 150 pounds of latex daily—all for little more than $3 a day and a monthly 100-pound bag of subsidized rice if quotas are met."
Adding It Up - TPM
"The pretty simple fact here is that the Republicans are not willing or able to criticize any of the substantial amounts of spending in this bill. They're focus on a few tiny parts of it. And too few people are pointing out that these amount to maybe one or two percent of the program total."
 

31 Jan & 01 Feb

Don't Fade Away

There is only One day left to the 50th Anniversary of Buddy Holly's fateful night in Hurley, ... the one that caused him to take a short plane ride to a crash in cornfield in Iowa. 

  2.5 Gigs of Bandwidth in January
"Your site myhurley.net has exceeded its bandwidth quota in the period beginning on 2009-01-01.  Your quota is set to 1048576000 bytes ( 1000.0 MB ), and your site has consumed 1650494712 bytes ( 1574.034 MB ) beyond that quota."
Area has connection to 'the day the music died'
"About 48 hours earlier, an old bus carrying the three singers and fellow musicians broke down on U.S. 51 in the Pine Lake, Wis., area. Various published accounts listed the temperature that night and early morning at between minus 24 and minus 35 degrees.  Sunday marks the 50th anniversary of the famous group's unscheduled stopover in this area."
Midgets slam B-G
"The Hurley Midgets defeated Butternut-Glidden 72-49 Friday at the Hurley K-12 School ...  Daulton Levra had a game-high 22 points for the Midgets."
Mercer edges Mellen in OT thriller
"Mercer's Matt Klopatek hit a pair of free throws with 20 seconds left to tie the game at 65-65 and Mellen took a timeout with 13 seconds remaining. The Tigers pressed and Ranallo got a steal and raced in for a layup as the clock wound down."
"Big Bay Sloop" gets national historic recognition"The Wisconsin Historical Society calls her "The Big Bay Sloop," after the type of vessel she is and her final resting place, some 300 yards east of Big Bay State Park on Madeline Island."
Better Relationship Between School & Lawmakers
"Martin has invited all 132 lawmakers and guests to her official residence for an informal reception on Monday, the first such meeting of its kind in years.  Martin also sent lawmakers notes of congratulation after they won election last year and even had her lobbyist deliver Christmas cards to their Capitol offices."
Detail in Koschnick's 'bloody shirt' campaign issue emerges
"But what Koschnick hasn't said on the campaign trail is that, as the presiding judge in the case, he refused to admit as evidence blood-stained shoes taken from Knapp’s bedroom during a second police search authorized by his brother."
Economic crisis imperils state dairy farms, group warns
"Dairy farmers are facing their worst crisis since the Great Depression, the National Family Farm Coalition, a trade group with Wisconsin members, said in a news release.  "These are the worst economic conditions we have ever faced, and they are impacting all farmers - whether you milk 50 cows or 5,000 cows," said Paul Rozwadowski, ..."
Snowmobiler gets 5 citations in 57 ducks' deaths
"The man reported his involvement after news reports that the ducks were killed Jan. 13 at the mouth of the Fond du Lac River. He was issued four snowmobile violation citations and one natural resource violation citation. No criminal charges were filed because the incident was ruled an accident."
Prudent budgeting, fuller rainy day fund could have prepared Wisconsin for crisis
"Over the last 15 years, leaders from both political parties, often at voters' urging, have avoided the hard choices between taxing more and spending less on priorities such as education and health care.  Instead, they've pushed today's bills off until tomorrow, creating some of the shakiest budgets in the nation and jeopardizing future commitments to safe roads, good schools and aid to the poor, according to a Wisconsin State Journal review of past budget practices."
Wisconsin becomes nation's No. 2 vegetable grower
"The National Agricultural Statistics Service says Wisconsin is the leader in growing snap peas for processing, producing 40 percent of the nation's crop with nearly 327,000 tons in 2008.  It moved into second place in production of sweet corn for processing, with nearly 652,000 tons last year."
Business Beat: A 'generational' shift in the economy
"Put another way, suppose your child was born in 1998 and on their birthday you put $10,000 away for college. Today, your kid is eight years from leaving home and that $10,000 is worth just $7,800, if invested in an S&P 500 index fund."
Protesters clash over UW/Meriter hospitals
"About 60 abortion rights protesters met the much larger, and mostly silent, anti-abortion demonstrators outside the surgery center Saturday with shouted slogans.  "Whose clinic? Our clinic. Whose rights? Our rights!" the smaller group shouted as the opposing demonstration moved up Regent Street to its intersection at Park Street."
Progressive Faith Groups Now Trying to Shift Debate - Washington Post
"While the progressive groups are emphasizing social justice, many also are urging Obama to help reduce abortions. The fight over the issue has always been complex and is likely to become even more so. While many liberal groups say they want abortions reduced, other antiabortion groups remain adamant about seeking a prohibition."
Angela Davis: Prisons perpetuate oppression of minorities -  Union Leader
"Around the world, the same thing is happening as people who were once unashamedly beat down continue to live below others both socially and economically. While blacks and other minorities are over-represented in American prisons, in Australia, it is aborigines, she said."
House GOP’s Stimulus Plan Would Actually Raise Taxes For Many Americans - The Plum Line
"However, we confirmed with the non-partisan Joint Committee on Taxation that 26 million people would still be forced to pay the AMT this year under the GOP bill. Essentially, their tax bill would give with one hand and take away with the other, leaving 26 million families without the tax cut they promised in their bill."