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home : news : city news March 23, 2017

Hodag BMX seeks to build on success of track
Jeremy Mayo/River NewsIn this July 31, 2016 file photo, Hodag BMX Club riders do a parade lap prior to a race at the Hodag BMX Track, located at West Park in Rhinelander. The Hodag BMX Club is looking to build upon renovations to the track which began last year.
Jeremy Mayo/River News

In this July 31, 2016 file photo, Hodag BMX Club riders do a parade lap prior to a race at the Hodag BMX Track, located at West Park in Rhinelander. The Hodag BMX Club is looking to build upon renovations to the track which began last year.
When Hodag BMX Club track operator Rob Deede came before the city's parks, buildings and grounds committee in August 2015, he presented the committee with an ambitious list of goals for the next few years. (subscriber access)
Saturday, March 11, 2017

Wastewater treatment plant lab honored by DNR
The Rhinelander Water and Wastewater Treatment Plant (WWTP) was honored by the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources Natural Resources Board March 1 with the 2017 Laboratory of the Year award for the work of lab technician Jody Flannery.

Public works director Tim Kingman said it's "very rare" for a facility the size of Rhinelander's to receive the honor. (subscriber access)

Tuesday, March 21, 2017

Birth of first child prompts Roskoskey's run for school board
When Benjamin Roskoskey became a father for the first time Jan. 30, with the arrival of his daughter, Felicity Rae, he began to see his place in the community in a different way. (subscriber access)
Tuesday, March 21, 2017

Icy roads didn't hamper Hodag Home Show
Somewhat icy road conditions didn't deter too many people from focusing on spring Saturday at the annual Hodag Home & Lifestyle Show at Rhinelander High School.

"So far it's a pretty good turnout," said Lauren Sackett, tourism and events coordinator at the Rhinelander Area Chamber of Commerce. "It was a little slow in the morning with the slippery roads, kind of detered people a little bit this morning, but it's starting to pick up, definitely more foot traffic and lots more exhibitors than we had last year. So it's been a pretty good show." (subscriber access)

Tuesday, March 21, 2017

Lily's House benefits from the generosity of AV-W eighth-grade class
In coordination with their annual project on domestic violence, the Arbor Vitae-Woodruff School eighth-grade class offered an important donation to Lily's House in Rhinelander.
Tuesday, March 21, 2017

Lake Tomahawk board discusses three-year road plan
Lake Tomahawk officials have outlined a road plan stretching out to 2020. The plan, discussed at the town board's monthly meeting last week, is currently slated to include eight projects beginning in 2018. (subscriber access)
Tuesday, March 21, 2017

Funkhouser to become Rhinelander's top cop
After a final round of interviews and a community meet and greet Thursday morning, the City of Rhinelander police and fire commission went behind closed doors for just over an hour before announcing that David Funkhouser will be the next chief of the Rhinelander Police Department. (subscriber access)

Saturday, March 18, 2017

Let the sun shine in the Northwoods
In honor of Sunshine Week - a celebration and advocacy of open government - The Northwoods River News and The Lakeland Times present the newspapers' 2017 awards and grades for openness in conducting public business.

The following grades are calculated using several measures, including how responsive officials have been this past year to open records' requests, how diligently they have strived to keep the workings of government open, how willing they were to communicate with the media and with the public, as well as their past track record.

The rating scale...

Saturday, March 18, 2017

City Council approves changes to residency ordinance
Monday's meeting of the Rhinelander City Council was quick and to the point, lasting just under 30 minutes and most items passing with little or no discussion.

The amendments to the city codes covering the police and fire and plan commission and the board of review requiring all members be city residents was approved at the very start of the meeting as part of the consent agenda by a 6-0 vote with aldermen Steve Sauer and George Kirby absent. (subscriber access)

Thursday, March 16, 2017

Northwood Golf Course sets bounty on new members in 2017
In an effort to increase membership numbers at Northwood Golf Course, the City of Rhinelander golf course commission approved an incentive program for current members to bring in new members during the upcoming season at its March 7 meeting. (subscriber access)
Thursday, March 16, 2017

City looks to have state take over debt collections
The city's finance, wage and salary committee approved a request from city clerk Val Foley to start using the State of Wisconsin Department of Revenue as its collection agency at its March 7 meeting. (subscriber access)
Thursday, March 16, 2017

3 finalists named in RDP chief search
Two of the three finalists announced to become the next Rhinelander Police Chief Wednesday have ties to the community, while the third is a veteran of over 11 years as the chief of a town in southeastern Wisconsin. (subscriber access)
Saturday, March 11, 2017

Welding causes fire on Elizabeth St.
A man welding in his garage at a home on Elizabeth Street at around 3:30 p.m. Thursday accidentally started a fire. Rhinelander Fire Department personnel quickly called in the Crescent and Newbold departments for mutual aid, but RFD chief Terry Williams said the fire was almost extinguished before any of their units arrived on the scene. He also said that firefighters were able to contain the fire to just the garage, keeping it from spreading to the rest of the home. He said the fire damaged the contents of the garage, but did very little damage to the structure itself. Rhinelander Police and Oneida County Medic 1 stood by for the hour-and-15 minutes fire units were on scene.
Saturday, March 11, 2017

City looks to partner with surrounding towns on North Faust Lake Road project
The City of Rhinelander public works committee gave tentative approval to a plan to partner with the towns of Pine Lake and Pelican to mill, face, shoulder and repave North Faust Lake Road, with the city's share running about 15 percent of the total cost of the project.
Saturday, March 11, 2017

Finance committee OKs ordinance changes
On Tuesday, the finance, wage and salary committee approved amendments to three ordinances of the city code to specify that members of the planning and police and fire commissions, and the board of review, would have to be residents of Rhinelander to be appointed or continue to serve. (subscriber access)
Thursday, March 9, 2017

Public works committee discusses HVAC upgrades to city shop
The heating, ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC) system in Rhinelander's city shop is in need of a major overhaul and upgrade, and the city's public works committee is trying to find a way to pay for the expensive project. (subscriber access)
Thursday, March 9, 2017

City committee raises questions on dumpster for State Theater
When the city of Rhinelander was informed that the State Theater at 110 North Brown Street had suffered water and mold damage following a storm on Aug. 11, 2016 due to alleged damage to the wall and window well exposed as part of the downtown streetscape project, the city quickly offered a dumpster to the owner of the building to help with clean up. (subscriber access)
Thursday, March 9, 2017

Mark Westen is appointed as Langlade County Sheriff
Gov. Scott Walker announced Tuesday the appointment of Sergeant Mark Westen as the new Langlade County Sheriff, replacing sheriff Bill Greening, who resigned in late December, 2016.
Thursday, March 9, 2017

Political Digest
Johnson: Juvenile justice reform moves forward

A bill by state Sen. LaTonya Johnson (D-Milwaukee) to require juvenile correctional officers to report suspected child abuse and neglect passed the Senate this week, and Johnson hailed the vote as a needed step forward.

Thursday, March 9, 2017

Political Digest
Vukmir, Sanfelippo propose bill to aid local law enforcement

State Sen. Leah Vukmir (R-Brookfield) and state Rep. Joe Sanfelippo (R-New Berlin) are reintroducing a bill that would expand Wisconsin's Law Enforcement Officer Grant Program.

The proposal has gained the support of the president of the Milwaukee Police Association, Mike Crivello.

Tuesday, March 7, 2017

Commission to interview one more police chief candidate
The city of Rhinelander police and fire commission met Friday morning to go over one last application for the vacant Rhinelander Police Chief position. Ultimately, the commission opted to offer that applicant an interview for the job, with the condition that the individual must first pass a telephonic screening interview with the consultant the city has hired to assist with the search. (subscriber access)
Saturday, March 4, 2017

Lakeland Times wins weekly 'Best in State' at WNA Awards
The Lakeland Times, sister paper of the Northwoods River News, won 37 awards, most notably the Best in State category for Wisconsin weekly newspapers, at the Wisconsin Newspaper Association awards last weekend in Middleton, competing against 122 newspapers and 3,042 entries. After receiving an award for General Excellence and a second straight Best in Division title, staff anxiously awaited the announcement of the winner of the largest crystal cup on stage. The rest is a blur of hugs, shouts and photos.
Saturday, March 4, 2017

Parks panel OKs contracts with three more baseball groups
If the full Rhinelander City Council OKs the three contracts approved by the parks, buildings and grounds committee Monday, the city will soon have long-term contracts in place with all baseball user groups of the fields at Hodag Park. (subscriber access)
Saturday, March 4, 2017

PPP issues raze order for house damaged by fire
A home in the city of Rhinelander severely damaged by fire last month will be torn down.

The city's protection of persons and property committee issued a raze order Tuesday for 1440 Upland Avenue, at the request of fire chief Terry Williams.

Williams told the panel his department was called to the residence at about 10:15 p.m. Feb. 10 after a fire was reported. (subscriber access)

Saturday, March 4, 2017

River News reporter awarded Golden Gavel, certificate of commendation
A Northwoods River News reporter has been honored by the State Bar of Wisconsin for his coverage of local courts.

On Feb. 23, Jamie Taylor received a Certificate of Commendation for his article "Long serving prosecutor set to step away." (subscriber access)

Saturday, March 4, 2017

Evening, weekend Jail Academy classes start March 28 at Nicolet College
Nicolet College will offer a part-time Jail Academy starting March 28 for individuals seeking the training for a career in corrections.

Classes will meet Tuesday evenings and on Saturdays for 12 weeks on the Nicolet Campus, according to a college press release.

Saturday, March 4, 2017

Court reporters honored
The week of Feb. 13-19 was Court Reporter and Captioning Week and Sen. Tom Tiffany wanted to acknowledge the silent work these men and women do. On Thursday, Tiffany presented Lynn Penfield, court reporter at the Oneida County Courthouse, with a proclamation signed by Gov. Scott Walker declaring Feb. 13-19, 2017 as Court Reporting and Captioning Week. "I think they quietly do their job assisting the judges in making sure our judicial system works efficiently, effectively and they certainly are deserving of the recognition that they do silently," Tiffany said.
Saturday, March 4, 2017

Sheriff identifies officer involved in Lincoln County shooting
Sheriff Jeff Jaeger has released the name of the Lincoln County deputy who fatally shot a 40-year-old Wausau man Monday evening.
Friday, March 3, 2017

AmeriCorps members planning food drive, spaghetti dinner for National Day of Service
The AmeriCorps members at Kids Impacting our Neighborhood (KIN) are hosting a week-long food drive ending in a spaghetti dinner as their National Day of Service project. (Subscriber access)
Thursday, March 2, 2017

Parks committee still chasing its tail on dog park
After a proposal to add a dog park to Pioneer Park sailed through the parks, buildings and grounds committee last month only to run into a storm of opposition from the public, and eventual defeat, at the Feb. 13 City Council meeting, the long-time advocate for the park was forced to return to Plan B at Monday's parks committee meeting. (subscriber access)
Thursday, March 2, 2017

Seven indicted for oxycodone-related charges
Seven people, including several from the Northwoods, have been indicted on oxycodone-related charges, the United States Attorney's Office for the Eastern District of Wisconsin announced late Wednesday.
Wednesday, March 1, 2017

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