April referendum will decide Monroe 911 upgrade funding
Monroe County will have a binding April referendum on whether to borrow 1.8 million for a 911 communication system upgrade. 911 administrator Randy Williams says the current system only covers about 65 percent of the county. Williams says when police, fire and First Responders can not communicate with dispatch, it just makes their job that much harder. Williams says short of any options at this point, let the voters decide. There’ve been at least three incidents in the past four months where officers could not communicate with dispatch, one where a man died and the other two where officers were dealing with suspects with deadly weapons.
Accused Rustic Mill arsonist could see federal charges
One of the men originally charged with having a hand in the burning down of a nearly 150-year-old Jackson County restaurant in 20-11 could reportedly be charged with lying to a federal agent. No such charges have been filed yet against 23-year-old Tyler Keck, now of San Bernardino, California. Keck’s felony arson charges were dropped in a deferred prosecution agreement in the burning down of the Rustic Mill.
Aquinas voucher statistics
95 percent of students of Aquinas Catholic Schools of La Crosse and Onalaska are not voucher students. That is down from 98 percent of students last year. Vouchers are worth about 72 hundred dollars per student this year, so with 48 voucher students, Aquinas is getting about 350 thousand dollars in tuition from vouchers. The system has about 1,060 students.
Mauston sewer grates being stolen
Mauston police are asking for the public help’s finding people that have been stealing city sewer grates in the past few weeks. Police say missing grates can lead to injuries or property damage.
Number of Fort soldiers being trained going up
More than 145 thousand soldiers trained at Fort McCoy from October of last year to September of this year. That’s up more than 20,000 soldiers from the previous year.
Sparta Haunted House open Friday and Saturday
The annual Sparta Boys and Girls Club House of Shadows Haunted House will be open tonight and tomorrow night. House chairman Bob Garrelts says like every year, the house has changed a lot despite limitations. Garrelts says they’ve probably changed about 85 percent of the house from last year, including an upstairs miner’s cave and a downstairs Little Shop of Horrors. Garrelts says they try to re-use what they can for the house every year, with most everything else donated. The house raises over 40 thousand dollars for the Club each year. It’s located on Osborne Drive in Memorial Park. For more information, go to http://www.house-of-shadows.org/wp/
Western WI unemployment rates down
Unemployment rates went down about half a percent in most of Western Wisconsin in September, but went up a tenth of a percent in Monroe County. Rates are down to between 3.5 and 4 percent in La Crosse, Vernon and Trempealeau counties, but up to 4.7 percent in Monroe County. Jackson County is at 5.3 percent.
Most Western WI wolf hunting still open
While one of two Western Wisconsin wolf hunting zones closed Monday, the rest of Western Wisconsin could be open to hunting for a while. Zone 6, which includes everything but the Central Forest, has only seen 7 of 35 wolves killed.
Vets organization to receive large donation Saturday
Tomah’s Veterans Assistance Foundation will receive a large clothing and hygiene donation Saturday from a Marine Corps League detachment.