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NEWS STORIES

Rhinelander's Mayor cautiously optimistic mill buyer will keep plant openSubmitted: 03/22/2013
Story By Lane Kimble


RHINELANDER - We need to wait awhile to figure out how the sale of Wausau Paper's Rhinelander and Mosinee mills will really effect the communities.

But Friday night, we did find a sense of cautious optimism coming from city leadership.

Rhinelander Mayor Dick Johns worked at the paper mill from 1955 to 1994. He's seen plenty of changes at the plant over the years, including three separate sales.

That past experience keeps him hopeful for the future.

"Confident's not a good word, but I'm hoping that it will be," Johns said. "That's important to all of us. You know, we have PrintPack down on the other side of town, that's an improvement to our community and we're proud of that and we're proud of that paper company."

KPS Capital Partners in New York invested $130 million to buy the two Wisconsin mills.

They're offering Wausau Paper 25 percent ownership in the new paper company they plan to form. Wausau Paper claims the investment group has "significant experience" in the paper business.

Mayor Johns hopes KPS understands Rhinelander needs to keep its mill.

"Any industry in this day and age is important to the community, especially when it's over 100 years old, you've had it here and it's been a part of your community for those many years," Johns said.

The sale isn't official just yet. There are seveal steps to go through, including establishing a new collective bargaining agreement with the unions.

Wausau Paper hopes to wrap things up by the end of the second quarter this year.

KPS invested in Waupaca Foundry, Inc., based in Waupaca, Wisconsin. Just last month, Waupaca Foundry dolled out a $200 million return to investers.

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 IN OTHER NEWS
What We're Working OnSubmitted: 03/03/2015

- It's a clash. More schools want to provide technology for students, like laptops. But some students can't use them at home for lack of internet access. Find out how one local school district handles this problem, tonight on Newswatch 12.

- Plus, the state championship for high school gymnastics takes place this weekend in Madison. One Rhinelander athlete had her best performance of her career in sectionals and will head to state.

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

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ONEIDA COUNTY - An ambulance trip in Oneida County could soon cost more. Both the county and the city of Rhinelander want to charge more for ambulance services.

Emergency leaders want to raise prices so they can maintain their service quality. The costs of the items first responders need, like medical supplies and gas, keep going up.

Both Oneida County and the city of Rhinelander charge less than the state average for most ambulance services. The emergency management department wants to charge a number closer to that average.

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RHINELANDER - A 33-year-old Tomahawk woman entered a not guilty plea Tuesday to a felony charge for being party to a 2003 alleged murder in Rhinelander.


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ONEIDA CO. - An ambulance took at least one person away after a car rolled over outside of Rhinelander this afternoon.

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MINOCQUA - Minocqua Winter Park may see some changes. The town of Minocqua will likely order a study of the park that could lead to upgrades and even expansion.

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MADISON - A bill that would increase speed limits on some Wisconsin highways and freeways has coasted through another green light at the Capitol.

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MADISON - Some people want to get rid of Wisconsin's waiting period for buying handguns.

Governor Scott Walker supports the idea, saying he would like to be a leader on the issue.

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