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College students fill staff needs at WPSSubmitted: 06/13/2013
Story By Kailey Burton

College students fill staff needs at WPS
RHINELANDER - Severe storms and construction during the summer often leave Wisconsin Public Service short-handed. Luckily summer also means college students are back in town, with time on their hands.

"Wisconsin Public Service for a number of years has been employing students throughout the summer to do our maintenance on our electric and gas type facilities," said Leah Van Zile with WPS.

Checking gas meters for leaks is not difficult- a sensor "sniffs" the ground and meters for natural gas and points out leaks. Workers then spray a soapy mix on the meter and watch for bubbles to pinpoint the leak. The process is fairly simple, but very important. Hiring college students to handle the job frees up full-time employees for bigger issues.

"If we have power outages or any other kind of emergencies those employees are available to respond to those and other customer work isn't pushed back because of the maintenance we need to do every few years," said Van Zile.

If you see young people in neon WPS vests in your yard, don't be alarmed, but DO consider how your dog might respond to a stranger on their turf. Every year several WPS workers are attacked by dogs.


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WISCONSIN - Emergency teams met in groups throughout Wisconsin Tuesday for the North Central Wisconsin Healthcare Emergency Readiness Coalition.

The groups called in on a conference call to work through fake scenarios in each county.
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Oneida County worked through a mock scenario at Hodag County Fest.


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EAGLE RIVER - A state department will look to an Eagle River company as an example for growth and innovation. Eagle Waste and Recycling serves 74 communities across northern Wisconsin and the Upper Peninsula.

About two weeks ago, the company finished several equipment upgrades and even expanded some of its facility to keep up with demand. 

In a couple weeks, the Wisconsin Council on Recycling will make a stop in Eagle River for a tour and to learn about what makes the business so successful.

"This is the only one in northern Wisconsin that's doing exactly what it's doing, which is processing single stream recycling to the tune of about 150 tons a day," said Sales Manager Jim Whittinghill.

Eagle Waste and Recycling recently added a third baler and doubled the size of its intake building. Whittinghill says the company is even considering adding a second shift for workers to process even more product.

He says they look forward to the state visit.

"We think it's a pretty great thing," said Whittinghill. "We like to show off our facility and make people aware of what's here, what it's doing for the state of Wisconsin, what it's doing for northern Wisconsin."

The Wisconsin Council on Recycling plans to visit Eagle Waste Recycling on Oct. 1 at 11 a.m. The meeting is open to the public. 

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Green Alert IssuedSubmitted: 09/18/2018

EAU CLAIRE - A Green Alert has been issued for a 38-year-old veteran.

Nicholas Wagener was last seen in the City of Eau Claire on September 5, 2018, at approximately 3 p.m.
  
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Wagener has left without contacting anyone for long periods of time in the past, most recently living in the woods using his advanced outdoor survival skills.

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RED CLIFF - The Red Cliff Band of Lake Superior Chippewa says plans are underway for a cell tower on its reservation in northern Wisconsin, a need that was underscored by the recent drowning deaths of four family members in the Apostle Islands.

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MADISON - A former prison guard who falsely claimed she had checked on a suicidal teen inmate has her job back.

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WAUSAU - Teachers in 14 school districts in our area will soon be able to teach high school students technical college courses.

The state Department of Workforce Development gave a grant to technical colleges around the state so students can be prepared to work in high demand jobs.

Northcentral Technical College received a $200,000 Dual Enrollment Fast Forward grant to train at least 72 teachers.

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VILAS COUNTY -
We now know the name of a man who drown in Vilas County.

According to the Vilas County Sheriff's Office, 70 year old John Zeibert of Phelps died.

The sheriff's office received a report around 11:08 p.m. Friday that Zeibert had not returned home from boating. He was last seen around 7:30 p.m. Deputies found the Ziebert's boat floating unoccupied when they arrived at the lake. 

Deputies searched the area with assistance from the DNR, Phelps Fire Department, and Phelps Ambulance. At 8:00 a.m. Zeibert's body was found in the water. He was not wearing a life jacket.

The cause of the drowning is under investigation.

In a press release, the sheriff's office urged people to have and wear appropriate life jackets while enjoying water related activities. 

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