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Minocqua Votes for More Parking, Raises for Chair & ClerkSubmitted: 04/18/2013
Story By Lex Gray


MINOCQUA - Anyone who goes to Minocqua in the summer knows parking can be a hassle, especially during big events like Beef-a-rama and Crazy Days.

The town board wants to help alleviate that problem.

The board put in a $55,000 offer for a piece of property a block and a half from Oneida Street.

They want to put 20 parking spaces where a house and shed currently stand.

Development would put the total cost at $74,000.

Board chairman Mark Hartzheim thinks it will pay off.

"You don't want people to drive into your business district, not find a parking space, and decide it's not worth and go somewhere else," he said. "You want them to spend time in town."

The board asked the town to buy the property at tonight's annual financial meeting.

All five town members who attended voted yes, plus the 12 town officials who have to attend.

Also at that meeting, Tom Handrick asked his fellow Minocqua residents to increase the town chair and town clerk's salaries after their next election.

The positions aren't up for election until April 2015.

Whoever is elected will get a $2,500 raise.

That will put the clerk and chair's salaries at $44,500 each.

Handrick said the chair and clerk currently make less than the town's other 25 full-time employees.

"I believe the two positions I made a motion to raise are two of the most important positions in our town," Handrick said. "They deserve to be paid accordingly."

Politicians and public officials usually face public anger over raises.

But Handrick says the town had an opportunity to vote on this, but only five of its 5,000 year-round residents showed up.

"I'm very active in the community and always believed in the philosophy that if you don't vote, you shouldn't complain about anything," Handrick said.

Hartzheim has been the town chair for two years and hasn't had a raise before.

He does plan to run for re-election.

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 IN OTHER NEWS
What We're Working OnSubmitted: 03/23/2017

- Tonight on Newswatch 12:

We'll take you live to Schofield and bring you the latest information on the shooting in that area Wednesday that took the life of a police officer and 3 other people and put several places in the Wausau area on lockdown.

We'll show you how the Merrill Fire Department is honoring the officer who was killed in the shooting incident, and we'll talk to the Oneida County Sheriff about how the county's Special Response Team feels about being able to assist the officers on the scene.

And today was day 9 of the trial for Kristopher Torgerson, the Wausau man who is accused of killing Stephanie Low and burying her body in Forest County. We'll bring you the details of the hearing.

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

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RHINELANDER - The Wednesday afternoon shootings in Schofield, Rothschild, and Weston sent several nearby police departments streaming into the area.

The Oneida County Sheriff's Office Special Response Team was one of the many outside departments on scene with their armor rescue truck.

Even though the shootings took place nearly 70 miles away from Rhinelander, Sheriff Grady Hartman said their job is to serve and protect, no matter the circumstances.

"We're use to the mutual aid system as when another jurisdiction requests our help. We're able to go and assist them. And likewise if we had a similar incident we would request under mutual aid for other officers and deputies to come help us," said Hartman.

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LAC DU FLAMBEAU - It takes a lot of training to become a wildland firefighter, but 26 people in Lac du Flambeau are well on their way.

The Bureau of Indian Affairs- Great Lakes Agency offered a five-day course on Wildland Fire Training this week.

Many of the participants hope to make a career out of it.

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MERRILL - You might want to grab your favorite flannel to suit up for this celebration.

Sawmill Brewing Company in Merrill will celebrate one year of beer Saturday. 

The craft brewery has 16 Wisconsin craft beers on tap: six are their own. 
 
At first, the Sawmill owners didn't know what the community would think.

"They've taken it by storm. There are so many people that are referring to this as our brewery, which is really what we wanted. We wanted to build something in Merrill that they could come to and enjoy," said owner Zach Kubichek. 
 
To celebrate its one year anniversary, there will be a special batch of "River Hog" oatmeal stout. 

Sawmill put the beer in a Northern Waters Distillery bourbon barrel for the last few months. 

"We just set it aside for a few months. And it's kind of like, 'I hope it works out.' Then all of a sudden we were kegging it, and we had to hook up a contraption like a science experiment and had to hook up a little contraption," said Kubichek, "It turned out fantastic I tried it yesterday and it will be ready to go for Saturday." 

You have one shot at tasting the special brew; there is only a half barrel for the special anniversary.

Beer doesn't take any breaks; Sawmill Brewing Company stays open seven days a week.

The one-year anniversary celebration starts at 2 p.m. Saturday.

The day will be full of live music, raffles, and of course, beer.


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MERRILL - The Merrill Fire Department changed its lights from white to blue on Thursday.

In honor of the police officer that died in Wednesday's shooting in Wausau.

Detective Jason Weiland served the Everest Metro Police Department for 15 years.

His death hit home for local men and women in uniform.

"We always talk about the active shooters and all that kind of stuff happens in a big city and it's never going to happen here. Now we have one in Wausau, we are fully prepared that at some point of time in the future it could happen in our community or our response area," said Merrill Fire Department Battalion Chief Mike Drury.

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MADISON - Cheese may become Wisconsin's official dairy product.

Wisconsin lawmakers want to give cheese the honor after encouragement from some fourth-graders at Mineral Point Elementary School.

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MADISON - The head of the Wisconsin Hospital Association is urging Gov. Scott Walker to parlay his influence with the White House and Republican leaders in Congress to make significant changes to the stalled health care overhaul bill.

Hospital Association President Eric Borgerding outlined more than a dozen points of concern in a letter marked as hand-delivered to Walker on Monday.

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