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Sunday State News

(11/4/12) Here are the stories:

Milwaukee voters are
leading the way in Wisconsin when it comes to early voting.  Last Friday was the
deadline.  Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett points out more people have cast their
ballots early for this election than those who did so in 2008, despite the face
the early voting period was nearly twice as long that year.  About five thousand
more people voted early in Milwaukee.  At a Saturday rally, Barrett encouraged
voters to go to the polls next Tuesday, making sure to get their friends and
neighbors to cast their votes as well.


Wisconsin Democratic
Congresswoman Gwen Moore says serving on the House Budget Committee chaired by
vice presidential candidate Paul Ryan has made her, quoting here, "witness to
the crime."  She talking about the budget plan pushed by the Janesville
Republican, who is chairman of that powerful committee in the U.S. House of
Representatives.  Moore was speaking in Milwaukee yesterday at a political rally
featuring an appearance by President Barack Obama.  She says she hopes her
fellow Democrat, Tammy Baldwin, is also elected to the U.S. Senate.  Baldwin is
running against former Wisconsin Governor Tommy Thompson.


A request from the city of
Racine for help has brought on no response from churches and nonprofit
organizations.  Racine asked tax-exempt groups to help the local economy by
paying taxes, even though they don't have to.  It was called the "Racine's Fair
Share" program and the city administration is saying it didn't work.  Letters
were sent to 182 nonprofit organizations last September, asking them to consider
paying a portion of the property tax they would have had to pay if they weren't
exempt.  Mayor John Dickert wrote the letter, pointing out the nonprofits are
getting city services like police and fire protection and snow plowing.  Eight
other nonprofit organizations already pay for some services through what is
called the PILOT program.  That brought in a little over 97 thousand dollars
last year.


A 23 year old Marshfield
man has a court appearance scheduled for tomorrow morning on charges he pour
gasoline on a pregnant woman, then threatened to set her on fire.  Tyler S. Ress
is charged with four felonies and three misdemeanors.  Ress is accused of
assaulting the 28 year old Marshfield woman last September.  Prosecutors say he
punched her in the stomach several times, then also tried to strangle her.  The
domestic attack lasted three hours.


Two public safety
departments in Dane County are squabbling after a volunteer firefighter in
Brooklyn was stopped for speeding on his way to a fire call.  Dan Dean accused
Oregon police officer Ted Gilbertson with over-reacting when Gilbertson drew his
gun during a traffic stop last June.  Dean had been speeding to the fire station
in his private vehicle after being paged.  Both Dean and Gilbertson were using
lights and sirens at the time.  Dean is contesting the ticket he was given for
failing to yield to an emergency vehicle.  He says he didn't pull over when he
saw Gilbertson's emergency flashers because he thought they both were responding
to the same emergency.  Gilbertson has been cleared of any wrongdoing.  Oregon
authorities point out the fire was a minor one, was broadcast that way, and Dean
shouldn't have activated his emergency siren and flashers.  There is also
disagreement about how fast Dean was driving.


La Crosse County officials
report the county jail is operating over its capacity.  As many as 17 inmates
have had to sleep on mattresses on the floor.  The situation has come up just
two years after a 30 million dollar expansion.  The possible reasons are varied.
Officials say it could be the county's growing heroin problem and the crimes
associated with them.  The La Crosse jail also is holding a record number of
mentally ill inmates due to reductions in community resources.  The county faces
a possible need to spend 400 thousand dollars to open a second pod at the
facility to handle the inmate numbers.


Brown Deer is hiring an
independent law enforcement instructor to review the way the city's police
department handled incidents involving the man who went on a fatal shooting
rampage at a Brookfield spa.  All contacts the Brown Deer police had with
Radcliffe Haughton will be reviewed by Robert Willis.  Haughton killed his
estranged wife Zina and two others October 21st.  Since then, Brown Deer police
have been criticized for not arresting Haughton during several domestic
incidents involved the couple over the last 11 years.  A dozen Wisconsin
lawmakers accused the police chief of not following the state's mandatory arrest
law on at least two of the domestic violence cases reported.  Lawmakers from the
area said last week's call for action was a "knee-jerk reaction," but they are
in favor of an independent review.


Madison-based WPS Health
Insurance reports it is going to eliminate about 600 jobs.  The company says
employees will start getting notices this month.  An estimated 250 of the jobs
will be lost at the WPS office in Wausau, a city where three other major
businesses closed recently, putting about a thousand people out of work.  An
e-mail was recently sent to WPS workers.  The company's CEO says WPS lost a
contract with TriWest Healthcare Alliance of Phoenix which would have had it
providing services to people receiving Medicare in 21 states.





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