Local News Briefs Friday 2/12/16

Waupun Man Arraigned On Drug Charges

The 33-year-old Waupun man suspected of supplying drugs in the overdose death of a Juneau woman was arraigned Thursday.  Christopher Skalitzky was arraigned in Dodge County court and not guilty pleas were entered on three felony drug charges.  He allegedly supplied the methadone and oxycodone to Shallen Manske that led to her death in December of 2009. Skalitzky allegedly admitted he provided the drugs to the 25-year-old woman.

Several Arrested During Dodge County OWI Task Force Effort

Several drivers were arrested for driving drunk and aggressive driving during a Dodge County Task Force effort. The deployment took place in the towns of Neosho, Rubicon and Ashippun last weekend. During the patrols a sheriff’s deputy stopped a driver on County Highway N for driving 92 miles per hour. The driver was arrested for his 1st drunken driving offense and suspicion of drug impairment. Passengers were issued citations for open intoxicants and possession of THC. Three other drivers were arrested for drunken driving and one tried to flee from a sheriff’s sergeant.

Bent On Fighting

Washington County Sheriff’s officials say a 28-year-old West Bend man gave deputies all they could handle early Thursday morning in the Town of Wayne. He refused to do a field sobriety test when his vehicle was found in a ditch off County Highway D. It took three deputies and a taser stun to get him into a patrol car. On the ride to a hospital for a blood draw he was spitting in the car and it took three attempts to do the blood draw. The call started out as a person heading to West Bend bent on starting a fight. 

Fire At Regal Ware In West Bend

West Bend firefighters were called to Regal Ware Wednesday night for a fire in a press. No one was injured during the fire. The fire was mostly out by the time the fire department arrived. Workers were sent out while repairs were made to machines. The time of the fire call was 6:45 p.m.

Ripon Room Tax Increased

The Ripon Common Council this week approved a 1 percent increase in the room tax. The room tax was increased from 6 to 7 percent. The Council had been considering the change for several months. The increase is expected to generate an additional $15,000 a year that can be given to local organizations for efforts to increase tourism. The last time the room tax was increased in Ripon was in January of 2005 when it was bumped up from 5 to 6 percent. 

Alliant Payment System Down During Upgrade

Alliant Energy officials say some payment options including My Account won’t be available for the next few days while they complete an upgrade to their customer information and billing system. Wisconsin customers won’t be able to access My Account or make payments through 1-800-Alliant from Friday through Sunday. Those options will be available again beginning Monday morning. Late payment penalties will not be assessed during the upgrade.

For more click here.

Sturgeon Season Economic Impact Numbers Need Revision

The DNR sturgeon biologist for the Winnebago System says the sturgeon spearing season has a bigger impact on the local economy than it did 10 years ago. Ryan Koenigs says the last study on that impact was done in 2006. He says that study estimated the impact of a long season contributes $3.5 million to the local economy. But Koenigs says there are a lot more people getting sturgeon licenses than a decade ago. He says that economic impact has to be quite a bit more because more people are coming out on the ice to participate in the sport. Koenigs that doesn’t take into account all of those who are out on the ice just to watch or visit with those who are spearing. He says there are even more at the registration stations and bars to watch fish being registered. Adding to the economic impact in Fond du Lac this year is the first ever Sturgeon Spectacular with events planned on and off the ice this weekend.

Sturgeon Spectacular Makes Its Debut

Fond du Lac kicks off its first ever Sturgeon Spectacular tonight. Craig Molitor is the president of the Fond du Lac Area Convention and Visitors Bureau. He says it is a winter festival timed around the opening weekend of the sturgeon spearing season. He says they wanted activities both off and on the ice. Things kick off with a concert by Copper Box tonight at 7 p.m. at the Thelma Sadoff Center for the Arts. Then shuttle buses will take people out to Roosevelt Park for another concert. He says there will also be fireworks. Saturday will bring even more activities including a hockey tournament, dog sled races, downtown chili crawl and more. For a complete list see the events section at the CVB website.

Matching Money For The Arts

State Representative Joan Ballweg is cosponsoring legislation that would provide a state match for federal funds for arts programs in Wisconsin. She says the National Arts Fund has given the state some money to subsidize programs they do for programs at the Thrasher Opera House, Fox Valley Theater, and American Players Theater. She says it’s not much they are asking for, but will support the arts. She says the state is being asked to match $13,000, which would provide a total of $26,000 for the programs going on in local communities.