MERRILL - You probably know how about how much a can of your favorite beer costs.
But do you know how much the problem of excessive drinking costs your community?
A University of Wisconsin group put a dollar figure on the economic cost of excessive alcohol use in each county in the state.
The number factors in health care costs, lost productivity, court costs, and car crashes.
For example, Lincoln County's number is troubling.
Tanya Simonis, a Licensed Family and Marriage Therapist, often deals with alcohol problems at the North Central Health Care Merrill Center.
"$35.3 million. That was the cost of alcoholism within the community. When you average that out, it comes to about $1,200 per Lincoln County resident. That's what they pay, indirectly, for the problem of alcoholism," she says.
The economic cost of excessive drinking in each Northwoods county was estimated in the millions.
But the pain alcoholism puts on families often can't be measured with a number.
"That's an immense, immense effect. It effects their families both directly and indirectly," Simonis says. "They have two sets of rules. There are rules when the person, the alcoholic, is dry - not drinking - and then there's the rules when they're drinking. They tend to be very, very, very different."
Simonis and others at the nonprofit North Central Health Care help people and families work through these problems.
See the links below to learn more about North Central Health Care and to read the full study.
THREE LAKES - The DNR hopes it won't find more Northwoods deer with chronic wasting disease.
Last year, a deer on a game farm near Three Lakes tested positive for the deadly disease. Although it hopes that incident is isolated, the DNR wants more data on the health of the Northwoods deer herd.
The agency is urging hunters near Three Lakes to give their deer heads to the DNR for CWD testing.
RHINELANDER - People in Rhinelander will be able to cast their November election ballots starting on Friday. It's the earliest people in Wisconsin have ever been able to vote.
The absentee ballots are stacked and ready for Friday at the Rhinelander City Clerk's office. To make the early voting process go as smoothly as possible, you will need to come prepared.
"When you come in make sure that you're registered. That is important. Make sure you're registered in the city if you're coming into us," said Clerk Valerie Foley.
Registering is easy; all you need is a photo ID and proof of residence. The registration form takes a couple of minutes, and then you will be able to fill out an election ballot.
"I think it is going to be a very busy day. I think people are pretty interested in the issues. And I think a lot of them would like to get and make sure they can vote if they're not certain they're going to make it to the polls in November or not," said Foley.
The clerk's office has already sent out about 200 ballots to people who have requested them.
Now, it is preparing for the early voter in-person rush.
If you are unsure whether you are registered to vote or where to go for early voting, the clerk's office suggests voters visit myvote.wi.gov for more information.
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