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What We're Working OnSubmitted: 12/12/2017
- Tonight on Newswatch 12:

The Department of Transportation is holding a public information meeting today about possible changes to a major Rhinelander intersection. We'll preview the meeting and bring you coverage tonight on Newswatch 12 at 10.

We talk to a fisherman and a DNR conservation warden about how safe or unsafe the Northwoods lakes are for ice fishermen.

And a historic Wabeno bed and breakfast is in a building that used to be the mansion of a lumber baron. We'll show you the place where the owners are offering tours for a good cause.

We'll bring you the details on these stories and more tonight on Newswatch 12 - news from where you live.




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 LOCAL NEWS

ELCHO - An Elcho couple's Christmas tradition now serves as a tradition for many others in the Northwoods.

Carl and Lissa Bloechl spent only a week setting up thanks to the stretch of warm weather early in the season.

It's common for the couple to drop everything to take an emergency EMT call which adds time to decorating.
 
They say they can't stop the display though!

"We get people from Rhinelander or Antigo or people that we know, even from outlying areas! They'll say 'Do you have the lights up yet, we want to see them!" Then we have to scramble and beat the weather," says Carl Bloechl.

The couple spends about $300 adding new items to their display every year, such as the new nativity scene Carl built.

This is the fifth year the couple has decorated their apartment complex.


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RHINELANDER - Monday night the Rhinelander City Council made a big decision it hopes will bring more success to the Northwood Golf Course.

The Council voted seven to one to end its restaurant lease with Dave O'Melia, and to let golf pro Dan Buckley go. The council will begin looking for an outside management company to handle the course.

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MERRILL -
A Tomahawk man charged with 12 felonies from a string of burglaries will spend the better part of the next decade in prison.

Jon Schenk, 45, was sentenced to seven years in prison in Lincoln County Court Monday morning. Schenk chose not to say much during his hearing, but judge Robert Russell had plenty to tell him.

"Here we are again," Russell said to Schenk.

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RHINELANDER - A new state law could help northern Wisconsin open a mine in the next three to five years, if Sen. Tom Tiffany's predictions are correct.

Tiffany (R-Hazelhurst) wrote the bill repealing a Wisconsin law often called the "mining moratorium," and Gov. Scott Walker signed it in Rhinelander on Monday.

Walker said the new law, branded the Mining for America Act, "might as well be called the 'Keep Our Kids in Wisconsin' bill."

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 REGIONAL NEWS

MADISON - The state Department of Natural Resources board is set to review the 2017 gun deer hunt.

The board will hear a presentation from Chief Warden Todd Schaller during a meeting Tuesday afternoon in Madison.

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MADISON - Republicans say Wisconsin state Superintendent Tony Evers is not fairly applying the law covering when a teacher's license is revoked.

Republicans have criticized Evers's decision not to revoke the license of a Middleton middle school teacher in 2014 fired for viewing emails that included images of naked women. An arbitrator found no students were in the classroom when the teacher saw the emails.

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LANSING, MI - A government panel is urging the temporary shutdown of twin oil pipelines in the Straits of Mackinac until the company that operates them can finish inspections and repair coating gaps.

On Monday, the Michigan Pipeline Safety Advisory Board approved the non-binding resolution after some board members expressed opposition to a recent deal between Gov. Rick Snyder's administration and Canadian pipeline operator Enbridge Inc.

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EAST TROY, WIS. - Hemp advocates say Wisconsin's marketplace must get up to speed now that hemp production has been legalized in the state.


The Janesville Gazette reports that farmers will have to learn how to grow hemp, obtain seeds, modify farm equipment and build hemp processing plants.

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