Local News Briefs Friday 1/29/16

Name Released In Fatal Pedestrian Accident

The name has been released of the 78-year-old Oshkosh man who died after he was struck by a pick-up truck in the city Wednesday morning. Wayne Stearns was walking north across West 20th Avenue from Montana Street when he was hit by the westbound truck. He was taken to a hospital in Oshkosh where he died. The 40-year-old Oshkosh man who was driving the truck has been cooperating in the police investigation.

Sheboygan County Traffic Pursuit

An 18-year-old man is facing charges after leading police on a 20 mile chase through western Sheboygan County late Wednesday night. A Sheriff’s deputy was trying to stop a vehicle in the Town of Greenbush when the driver took off on a pursuit that went through the Towns of Greenbush, Mitchell and Plymouth. Speeds reached 75 miles per hour. A spike strip was used, which deflated three of the four tires on the suspect’s vehicle.  He was taken into custody without incident. No one was injured and there was no property damage. The teen is facing felony fleeing and eluding an officer charges. The Wisconsin State Patrol and Plymouth Police assisted the Sheriff’s Department in the pursuit.

Waupun Man Arraigned On Child Porn Charges

A 27-year-old Waupun man was arraigned this week in Dodge County on nine felony counts of possessing child pornography. Robert Moungey pled not guilty. He’s also facing a felony 1st degree child sex assault charge for allegedly engaging in inappropriate acts with an infant.  His arraignment on that charge is February 12.  Moungey is also facing similar felony sexual assault charges in Green Lake County. 

Waupun Woman Arraigned On Theft Charges

The 24-year-old Waupun woman facing theft and burglary charges for a Dodge County crime spree was arraigned this week. Brittany Hopp pled not guilty to the charges stemming from crimes committed last August. Power tools and electronics were taken from garages in the City of Waupun. She allegedly told prosecutors she did it to support a heroin habit. She will be back in court in March.

Unemployment Rates Increase At End Of Year

Unemployment rates for the City and County of Fond du Lac increased in the last month of 2015, but both remain below 4 percent. According to federal labor statistics the City’s jobless rate increased from 3.5 percent in November to 3.9 percent in December. During the same period the County’s jobless rate increased from 3.4 to 3.6 percent.

Thiesfeldt Bill Would Allow More To Join WRS

State Representative Jeremy Thiesfeldt has authored a bill that would allow more public employees to join the Wisconsin Retirement System. The state lawmaker from Fond du Lac says under current law an entire municipality’s employees have to join the system. He says some would like to get into it, but it is an all or nothing approach at this time. Under his bill new employees of a municipality could join one at a time as they are hired and the municipality would commit all future employees to WRS while other employees would remain under the system they are already enrolled in. He says it’s been a complicated bill, but he hopes they can push it through this session.

City Councilman Gets An Earful On Snow Removal

Fond du Lac City Councilman Gary Miller had some words of warning for fellow council members this week. Miller, who is vice president of the council, chaired their meeting and passed along a story toward the end of the meeting. He will reach a six-year term limit in April and says people know he’s leaving the council and aren’t afraid to come up to him and give him an earful. He says he was enjoying breakfast at a McDonald’s on West Johnson Street when someone came up to him and complained about snow removal. Miller says given how much snow we’ve received at times this season he told the person he thought the city was doing a good job with snow removal. He says the two of them reached a mutual understanding. He says they left on a friendly basis.

Ripon Common Council Considers Subcommittee Structure

The Ripon Common Council a long time ago did away with a subcommittee structure, but may revisit it in the future. The council used to meet once a month and subcommittees would meet as well. But the subcommittees were eliminated and the council went to having two meetings a month. City Administrator Lori Rich says their council president wants to revisit the subcommittee issue. She says there’s been some thought that with all that’s been going on in the city having the subcommittees do a little leg work before something is brought to the council might be a good idea. She says discussions on the issue won’t be held until after a new council is seated in April.

Chocolate Fantasy Sunday

The 20th Annual Chocolate Fantasy is coming up in Fond du Lac this Sunday. It will be held from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the Knights of Columbus Hall. Soroptmists International of Fond du Lac puts on the annual event that features chocolate tasting, a giant gift-basket silent auction, and raffles. Renee Dufour Russell of the group says the organization is about improving the lives of women and girls. This year’s event will benefit two local organizations. She says ASTOP and the Solutions Center will get the lion’s share of the money they raise on Sunday. Tickets are $12 in advance and $15 at the door, and this year come with a to-go container for leftovers and a bottle of water. Tickets are available at Fox Valley Savings Bank, Wegner Office Supply, Hometown Bank on Peters Avenue, EP-Direct, C.W. Smith Jewelers, Bank of Oakfield in Oakfield, Village Flower Shoppe in Mayville and from Soroptimist members. 

No Name Art Festival Saturday At UW FDL

Fond du Lac County 4-H Youth Development will be sponsoring a first of its kind event for youth Saturday at the UW-Fond du Lac Commons and Prairie Theater. Diana Tscheschlok of the Fond du Lac County UW-Extension says it’s being called the No Name Arts Festival and will showcase the artistic talents of area youth. She says there will be public speaking, writing, short stories, poetry, arts and crafts. She says they are also having a contest to name the art show. The show is open to the public and gets underway at 9 a.m. Tscheschlok says it’s too late to register to be part of the show, but another deadline looms at the end of the week for 4-H members. She says the deadline to show at the Fair is January 31st and people on Saturday can tell you a little more about it.