RHINELANDER - Every time you pay with a credit card, business owners pay a fee.
But now, you could be paying that charge instead.
Starting last weekend, it became legal for businesses to pass on the credit card surcharge to customers.
That could mean you'll pay up to 4% of your total at the register.
Al's Furniture has been a Rhinelander staple for 32 years.
Many people in the Northwoods have been shopping there for years to buy beds, sofas, and chairs.
About half their sales are by credit card.
Owner Jeff Dibbles doesn't want to lose customers by charging an extra fee to buyers.
"First of all, we've been absorbing it for years. There's no sense in changing now. Also, I believe that if I do start charging it, I might have customers walk out the door and not purchase from me," says Dibbles.
Right next door, Coffee Beans, Etc. coffee shop owner Laura Gilbert makes her money dollar by dollar, instead of the hundred by hundred Jeff makes in furniture.
That makes her think about credit card fees differently.
She's hit with a set fee every time a card is used.
"It costs me more money to swipe the card and charge them for it, so I lose money ringing up a refill or even a small cup of coffee, with the percentage that they take out in swiping fees," Gilbert says.
Even selling small items like coffee, about half of her business comes from credit cards, too.
The new rules have Laura thinking about charging customers a little more for using a card.
EAGLE RIVER - A Snow Show in Eagle River reminded visitors of all that snowmobiling clubs do for Wisconsin. About 300 people stopped by the Eagle River Derby Track Sunday for the event. The Association of Wisconsin Snowmobile Clubs invited 15 vendors to help educate people about the economics and basics of snowmobiling.
"We just want everybody to be aware of all the work that goes into maintaining and upkeep of the snowmobile trails," said Association of Wisconsin Snowmobile Clubs President Dave Newman. It was the 5th annual Snow Show.
MINOCQUA - A major 'safety net' resource used by nearly 800,000 people in Wisconsin could get cut in half. The Trump Administration wants to radically change SNAP. The Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program formally known as food stamps. " It's a fundamental lifeline," said St. Germain Sentury Foods owner David Weber. Last Monday Weber found out a lifeline for some of his customers was at risk.
" In its current form it's a very vital necessity for the families," said Weber. Weber's store has supported the current debit card style SNAP or food stamp program since it started in the 60s. However, the Trump administration wants to radically change SNAP to a food box delivery styled program in its 2019 budget. " The boxes people would receive, would contain mostly shelve stable food it doesn't [provide] fresh vegetables," said Weber. With the change low- income Americans receiving at least $90 a month would get half their benefits in the form of a "USDA Foods package."
" There may be a need for change for the SNAP program, but I'm not sure the proposed changes are the way to go," said Weber. The box would include shelf stable milk, ready to eat cereals, pasta, peanut butter, and beans, but no fruits or vegetables. " [It's a] disservice to the community and the people who receive that benefit," said Weber. Weber said right now the current SNAP program allows people to get the food their families need when they need it. Instead of the nearly 800,000 SNAP users in Wisconsin needing to wait for a pre-arranged box delivery. " If there is going to be changes they need to be realistic changes that won't hurt people," said Weber.
LAKE TOMAHAWK - A 32-year-old woman had to be airlifted to a hospital after a snowmobile crash.
Oneida County Sheriff's Department Sgt. Tyler Young said emergency crews responded to the accident around 8:30 a.m. Sunday morning. It happened in an area off Highway 47 near Fawn Lake Rd in McNaughton.
STEVENS POINT - Stevens Point Police are investigating an armed robbery.
Around 6 a.m. Sunday morning, police and Portage County Sheriff Deputies responded to a report of an armed robbery at the R Store in the 5400 block of HWY 10 E in Stevens Point. Police say during the initial investigation, they determined an armed suspect displayed a weapon and took money from the store.
PELICAN LAKE - Tribal members from across Wisconsin held a Deep Winter Camp to pass on parts of their cultures. Members from several different tribes wanted to give kids the chance to experience a piece of their culture. They hope the camp encourages younger members to keep traditions going and never forget where they came from. "They're going to be the next teachers they're good kids and we all love every kid that came here and spent time with us. They all learned something and they'll take it back and teach others," said Lac du Flambeau Band Vice Chairman John Johnson Sr.
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