Local News Briefs Friday 3/6/15

The 21-year-old Oshkosh man suspected of making the toxic poison ricin has been offered a plea deal by federal prosecutors. The attorney for Kyle Smith is taking time to discuss the offer with Smith whose trial on federal charges begins on Monday, March 16th. Last November during the execution of a search warrant at Smith’s Oshkosh home authorities found a gram and a half of white powder. It tested positive for ricin, enough to kill 20 people. Two UW-Oshkosh professors tipped police off that Smith, a senior at the school, had been asking them about making toxins from plants. He could spend his life in prison if he’s convicted of the federal charges.

State Revenue Down

A member of the legislature’s Joint Finance Committee says some tough decisions will have to be made during the state budget process. State Representative Michael Schraa says they won’t be picking on anyone in particular with funding cuts. He says the fact is revenues have been lower for the state in the past year. He says that trend continued into the new year even with lower prices at the pump. He says other revenue indicators were mixed. He says the sales and use tax was up 6.6 percent in January, but individual income taxes were down 17 percent and corporate taxes were down 21 percent. He says that’s an indication that the economy isn’t blasting off the way we had hoped.  The state lawmaker from Oshkosh says in May of last year the state learned it had a $350 million surplus. He says they are hoping for similar numbers this year when capital gains are reported.

EAA Wishes Harrison Ford Speedy Recovery

The Experimental Aircraft Association issued a statement Thursday for a quick recovery after actor Harrison Ford crash landed a vintage WW II plane on a Los Angeles golf course. Ford experienced engine trouble after take off and had to make an emergency landing. The star of the Indiana Jones and Star War movies is recovering in a hospital from non-life threatening injuries. EAA Chairman Jack Pelton says Ford is a friend and longtime EAA member and they wish him a speedy and full recovery. Ford is also the former chairman of the EAA Young Eagles program.

Twelfth Year For Ag Showcase

The 12th Annual Agricultural Showcase will be held Saturday at the Fond du Lac County Fairgrounds Recreation Building. Fond du Lac Area Association of Commerce Agricultural Programs Director Brenda Gudex says agriculture touches the lives of everyone. The theme this year is “United Nations of Cheese and Sausage.” Gudex says that theme will be incorporated in the programs including two presentations by Amy Hanten, “The Cooking Mom,” at 11 a.m. and 1:30 p.m. The $3 cost of admission also allows you to sample cheeses, sausages, wine and beer. There will also be kids’ activities including a petting zoo. Hours for the Ag Showcase are 8:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. KFIZ’s Wade Bates will be doing reports from 8 to 8:30 Saturday morning from the Showcase.

Free Spirit Horses Recovered Nicely From Dog Attack

The Executive Director of Free Spirit Riders says their horses have recovered nicely since being attacked by a pit bull in June of 2013. Six horses were injured and the dog was killed by the horses. Mary Narges says the attack brought a lot of attention to therapeutic riding program for the developmentally disabled. She most of the horses are still being used. She says she was most surprised by an Arabian horse that suffered a lot damage to its hind quarters and since the incident has been gentler with riders. She says although a horrific incident it did make people more aware of their services. Free Spirit Riders is hosting the Gathering of the Clan an Irish music event at Marian University’s Hornung Center from 8 to 11 p.m. tonight. Tickets are available in advance at Mike’s Music and Wegners Office Supply and also at the door.

Mayville Man Placed On Probation For Sending Lewd Photo

The 19-year-old Mayville man who sent a lewd photo to a 16-year-old girl has been placed on probation for a year. Seth Lane was sentenced in Dodge County this week to the probation and 30 hours of community service. Last December Lane pled no contest to a misdemeanor charge stemming from the incident in February of 2014. He and the girl were both in the Dodge County Law Enforcement Explorer program when the incident occurred. The photo was sent vial the Snapchat cell phone app. If Lane lives up to terms of his probation his record will be expunged.

Good Year For Thrivent

Thrivent Financial announced its 2014 financial results have led to a sixth consecutive year of growth for the fraternal benefit society. Thrivent experienced one of its best years of performance in its 113-year history. Thrivent, its members, employees and the Thrivent Financial Foundation continue to generously give through various volunteer, matching and granting programs to strengthen and support communities nationwide. In 2014, $234 million in direct support was given to churches, schools, charitable organizations and individuals in need. On behalf of Thrivent, its members, employees and others volunteered nearly 11 million hours in communities nationwide.

Thelma Now Serving Blue Goose Coffee

Thelma Sadoff Center for the Arts in Fond du Lac and Horicon Bank have partnered to improve the experience of guests of THELMA by serving delicious Blue Goose Coffee. The Blue Goose Coffee House is located within the Horicon Bank branch at 854 E. Johnson St. and is the only one like it in Wisconsin. The idea of putting a coffee house inside a bank was uncharted territory for banking, but after a visit with his son to the Coffee Museum in Leipzig, Germany, Bank President Frederick F. Schwertfeger incorporated the idea into his dream for Horicon Bank.  The Blue Goose Coffee House serves locally owned Black Waters Coffee, roasted in Beaver Dam, Wis.  Blue Goose Blend coffee will be available free to THELMA patrons at certain events and available for a fee to rental clients.  “We are excited to bring the Blue Goose brand to THELMA,” said Kevin Miller, THELMA Executive Director. “Having coffee associated with one of our local businesses only adds to the great experience we want for all THELMA patrons.”

Pet Rabbit Found In Ripon

Was there an early appearance by the Easter Bunny in Ripon? Not likely, Ripon Police say a concerned citizen turned in a rabbit they found in their yard in the 500 block of Jackson Street. They say its obvious the bunny is someone’s pet. If it may belong to you contact Ripon Police at (920) 748-2888. Ripon PD Photo.

Daylight Saving Time Begins

Daylight Saving Time begins this Sunday at 2 a.m. It’s time to spring forward and set our clocks ahead an hour. Fond du Lac Fire and Rescue officials say it’s also a good time to put fresh batteries in your smoke alarms and carbon monoxide detectors.