WAUSAU - After 12 years at the top of Marathon County Law enforcement, Sheriff Randy Hoenisch will retire soon.
The sheriff held a press conference today in Wausau.
Earlier this week, the Wausau Daily Herald revealed he booked fewer than two office hours so far in all of 2013.
He wouldn't explain why that was, but says that's one of the reasons why he's retiring.
The other is the likelihood that his wife will be sentenced to jail.
An emotional Sheriff Hoenisch began today by addressing his wife's legal troubles.
Kim Hoenisch will be sentenced in April on charges of burglary and misconduct.
She was fired from her job in December as a Marathon County probation and parole agent.
He says the situation had a profound effect on his job as sheriff.
"What I didn't realize at the time was the effect it would have, on every aspect of my life including mentally, physically and emotionally," said Hoenisch.
Sheriff Hoenisch originally wanted to announce his retirement in April.
He described the journey to this decision as an emotional one.
"I would tell people I'm somewhere between suicide and suicide. You can't imagine the rollercoaster ride. And, I guess I forgot to touch on this. The thing that was most difficult, in this whole situation is one shoulder is I see myself as a husband, and the other shoulder I see myself as the sheriff," said Hoenisch.
The main reason for his retiring is to be with his family.
He has 4-year-old twin sons, who sat with him during part of his press conference.
Hoenisch still needs to send in official paperwork regarding his retirement, which he says should take between 2-3 weeks.
Big bucks to expand nutrition, physical education in Wisconsin schools
WISCONSIN - Seven Wisconsin school districts have been awarded a total of $3.2 million in federal grants to help them expand their nutrition and physical-education programs.
To qualify, the districts have to implement programs that teach students healthy eating habits and good nutrition. They also have to make sure kids have access to certain physical fitness activities, which could include fitness assessments or developing certain team skills.
The largest grant is going to the West Allis-West Milwaukee School District, which will receive about $850,000. The Mukwonago Area School District and Pittsville School District will each get about $445,000.
ACROSS THE NORTHWOODS - Winter can be hard on everything, but you might not think it's hard on fish. They're protected under a layer of ice from the weather. But that layer of ice can create problems if it lasts too long.
"You don't get enough light penetration that goes down into the water. So there's no photosynthesis by the algae in the water so there's no oxygen that's produced," says Jim Kreitlow, DNR Lakes Biologist
WISCONSIN - Six out of ten people with Alzheimers and dementia will wander off at some point.
That puts them at risk for injury or even death. And not all of those people are found quickly enough.
That's why Governor Scott Walker recently signed a bill that will help find them quicker.
The Wisconsin Silver Alert bill will create a program that works like an Amber Alert for missing children.
An effective alert system is crucial to the Northwoods because of the growing aging population and severe winter weather.
For advocacy groups like the Alzheimer's Association, the new bill is a huge victory.
"Family caregivers of people who have Alzheimers, or another type of dementia are worried and concerned about whether or not their loved one might wander away from home," said Julie St. Pierre, an outreach specialist for the Alzheimer's Association in Rhinelander. "It's very important that those caregivers out there know that there are important resources that can help keep their loved ones safe in the home. The Silver Alert is certainly now a part of that safety net that we have in place."
The Alzheimer's Association was just one group that worked closely with the Wisconsin Crime Alert Network to get this bill passed.
A coordinator for the network believes this system will save lives.
"This bill really advances [us] one step forward in addressing the needs of an aging population. And that's extremely important in the Northwestern part of Wisconsin," said Joe Libowsky, coordinator for the Wisconsin Crime Alert Network. "In the Rhinelander area, where you have fairly severe weather, it makes the urgency of getting out the alert as quickly as possible even more important."
The alert system will heavily involve all 500 law enforcement agencies in the state to respond to at-risk adults who are reported missing.
Wisconsin joins 30 other states with a silver alert system.
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