THE NORTHWOODS - There have been mixed results out on the water for the first week of fishing season. But locals are happy to see the ice melting and are getting out there to give it a try.
Crandon's Ryan Alloway went out fishing with his friend Blake on opening weekend. The 13 year old was very excited to bring in this 20 inch bass. Ryan used a Carolina rig with a Berkeley power worm and is looking forward to catching an even bigger one next time.
Also from Crandon, Andy Madl caught this 33 inch 14.5 pound walleye. This monster was reeled in on the Fox River and was the biggest ever for Andy. He used a crank bait and released it after capturing the moment.
And Newswatch 12's own Joe Dufek tried his luck crappie fishing for the first time in over 20 years. Joe was out on the Three Lakes chain with fishing guide Gary Myshak. After about an hour, Joe reeled in his very first crappie. It was 11.5 inches and he was using crappie minnows for bait. As you can tell from the smile, Joe was thrilled with his catch.
MADISON - Wisconsin Elections Commission staff plan to hire a half-dozen new employees and upgrade software to bolster election security.
The commission received a $7 million federal grant in March to upgrade security after Russian actors tried to access a state Department of Workforce Development system before the 2016 election.
Staff told the commission Thursday that the Department of Administration has approved hiring six new four-year security positions, including an information technology project manager, an elections security trainer and a voting systems specialist.
MADISON - The Wisconsin Elections Commission has agreed to lift overseas ballot restrictions to avoid a legal battle.
The U.S. Department of Justice warned earlier this month that it's preparing to sue because Wisconsin law doesn't let temporary overseas voters to obtain ballots electronically or to submit downloadable back-up ballots in case they don't have time to return an official ballot.
Federal law allows all overseas voters to obtain ballots electronically and submit back-up ballots. Assembly Republicans passed a bill that would have aligned Wisconsin's statutes with the federal law but the measure died in April after Senate Republicans added language limiting special legislative elections.
MERRILL - People on the west side of Merrill will need to put up with the sound of construction this summer. What was once an empty lot will now be the site of the Stonebridge Apartments. The apartments are a new source of affordable housing in Merrill and should be complete by the late summer.
When you're looking at Park Place apartments in Merrill, you might confuse the building with something else.
"I think Park Place looks like a 1970s dormitory at UW Madison," said Merrill Area Housing Authority Executive Director Paul Russell.
But a new apartment complex being built just across the street is going to offer a different look.
FOX CROSSING - State justice officials say a police officer in the Fox Valley has fatally shot a suspect.
The Department of Justice says Fox Crossing police responded to a report of a man threatening people at Fritze Park Wednesday afternoon. Police say numerous people called about a man who they said was acting erratically and was armed with a knife.
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