Local News Briefs Monday 8/26/13

A house fire in the Village of Newburg early Sunday morning caused moderate damage to the building. Washington County Sheriff’s officials say the family dog awoke residents of the upper apartment at 527 Franklin Street and they evacuated the building after seeing smoke in the apartment and fire in the lower apartment. The Newburg Fire Department quickly extinguished the flames on arrival. There were no injuries. There were working smoke detectors in the building. The Sheriff’s Office and Wisconsin Department of Criminal Investigations are investigating the cause of the fire. Sheriff’s officials say there was moderate damage to the property caused by heavy smoke and fire. Five fire departments assisted the Newburg Fire Department at the scene.


Inmate Threatens Sheboygan County Judge


(WHBL-Sheboygan)-An inmate in the Waupun State Prison could be facing up to 6 more years after sending a threatening letter to Sheboygan County Judge L. Edward Stengel.  Thirty-one-year-old Jesse Williams was charged Friday in connection with the letter, which was received by the judge on June 26th.   In it, Williams threatens to kill the judge and his family.  He admitted to investigators he sent the letter because Stengel had sentenced him to additional prison time for a similar threatening letter he had sent to judges in 2010 on behalf of a fellow prisoner.  As it turns out, Stengel never sentenced him in that case.  Williams had been sentenced by Manitowoc County Judge Patrick Willis.


FDL School Board Preview


The Fond du Lac School Board will be asked to approve bids for long term disability and life insurance when they meet tonight. District Business Director Wendy Brockert reports the district will save $87,737 on costs with the bids. Also during the meeting the board will hear the annual report on school culture and climate from Marian Sheridan the District’s Coordinator of School Health and Safety Programs. According to information supplied to the board there were 326 reports of bullying in the 2012-13 School Year and the majority of them, 231, were verbal. Another 107 incidents involved physical bullying. As a result there were 184 office discipline referrals. The board meets at 7 p.m. at the District Administration Center Board Room at 72 West 9th Street.


Dredging, Bike Plan On Advisory Park Board Agenda


Fond du Lac’s Advisory Park Board will get an update on the Lakeside Park Channel Dredging Project and a bicycling and pedestrian plan when they meet this afternoon. The dredging will be done this coming winter. The bike and pedestrian plan would be for bicycle trails that loop the City. Public Works Director Jordan Skiff will update the board on both. The meeting is at 5:30 p.m. at the City-County Government Center.


Expansion Effort For Adelaide Park


An effort is getting started to expand the facilities at Adelaide Park in Fond du Lac for BMX bikers, skateboard and scooter users. Christina Umbreit is the mother of a BMX biker. She says they started a Facebook page to gather and share ideas. She says they hope to raise private funding for the effort. She says a trial period allowing BMX bikers to share the park with skateboarders this summer has worked out well. She says on any given day there are 20 to 30 kids at a time using the park.The City Council authorized the trial period through Labor Day.


Dodge County Sheriff Looks At Robotic Crash Reconstruction Equipment


Dodge County Sheriff’s Pat Ninmann says they hope to purchase a new robotic total station for accident reconstruction work on County highways. She says it would allow for one officer to go out and photograph the scene themselves. She says that will save them some money and allow them to more effectively use their manpower because currently it takes two officers to shoot an accident scene. She says it will also give them a little more information than what they are receiving. Sheriff Ninmann says their officers are well-trained for reconstructing accident scenes. She says because of their experience they get quite a few calls from other law enforcement agencies to aid in traffic crash reconstructions.


NFDL Officers Get Raise


Officers with the North Fond du Lac Fire and EMS will be getting small bumps in pay starting September 1st. The Village Board recently approved the new pay rates, which Village Administrator Chuck Hornung says amounts to a monthly stipend and had been a long time coming. He says they wanted to do something for their captains and lieutenants. He says they appreciate what those officers do and the raises won’t amount to too much. He says it will be $10 to $20 a month for those officers.


Bill About School Bus Lights


(Wisconsin Radio Network)-All new school buses in Wisconsin will be equipped with special lights, as required by federal law. Current law in Wisconsin requires school buses to have a 360 degree flashing white strobe light atop the vehicle, and a flashing red light to warn other drivers when passengers are getting on or off the bus. But Senator Jerry Petrowski of Marathon says Wisconsin law needs to be updated to coincide with federal law, which has recently changed. Federal laws dictate the standard for all new buses being manufactured; however, under current state law, it’s illegal to operate buses with the new lights according to federal requirement. Petrowski’s bill changes that. The bill also includes procedures as to when and how the new lights need to be activated. The Senate Transportation Committee held a public hearing on the measure last Thursday.


Charter Announces New Sports Programming


An official with Charter Communications says Fox Sports has launched a challenge to ESPN Sports when it comes to every day sports’ coverage. John Miller says Fox Sports launched Fox Sports 1 and 2 on August 17th. Fox Sports 1 replaced Speed and Fox Sports 2 replaced the Fuel channel. He says they are high profile sports channels. He says Fox Sports will feature the racing events that Speed covered and much more including PAC 12 and Big 12 football, Major League Baseball, NASCAR series, UFC ultimate fighting, and World Cup Soccer. Miller says ESPN is also launching ESPN Goal Line and Buzzer Beater programming, which is similar to the NFL Network’s Red Zone channel. He says those will be found on their high definition and digital tiers and will begin with the start of the College Football season.


FDL County Offices Closed Next Monday For Labor Day


County offices in the Fond du Lac City-County Government Center, the Sheriff’s Office Lobby Window, the Portland Street Annex including the Veterans Service Office, the Department of Social Services and the Highway Department will be closed on Monday, September 2nd for Labor Day.


FDL City Offices Closed Labor Day As Well


City officials have announced holiday hours for next Monday’s Labor Day Holiday. All city offices in the City-County Government Center will be closed. The Municipal Center will also be closed for all services, including refuse and recycling collection and bulky waste drop off. Refuse and recycling normally collected on Monday will be collected on Tuesday, September 3rd along with the normal Tuesday collection. Although, yard waste and brush may still be dropped off during the holiday hours. The Senior Center and Fond du Lac Public Library will both be closed on Monday, September 2nd, resuming regular hours on September 3rd. City Transit Buses will not operate on September 2nd, but will resume regular routes on September 3rd.


Congressman Petri Town Meetings


Congressman Tom Petri will be holding town meetings at 12 different locations over the next two weeks. They will start out at the Columbia County Law Enforcement Center in Portage today at 3 p.m. and conclude on Thursday, September 5th at the Fond du Lac Public Library. In between the federal lawmaker will hold town meetings in Fredonia, Howards Grove, Poynette, Lomira, Manitowoc, Montello, Wautoma, Berlin, Menasha, and Grafton. The town meeting at the Fond du Lac Public Library will be from 3:30 to 4:30 that afternoon. For a complete list of times and locations click here.