Lieutenant Governor supports armed guards protecting mine siteSubmitted: 07/09/2013

Ben Meyer
Executive Producer

RHINELANDER - The Gogebic Taconite company hired armed to protect land they want to mine in Ashland and Iron Counties.

Two Democratic lawmakers think that's a huge overreach.

But it sounds like Wisconsin's Lieutenant Governor supports the idea.

Gogebic Taconite says they hired the guards because of protests over the mining project.

A spokesman says teams of mining opponents, "violently attacked" the company's drill site last month.

Now, Democratic Senator Bob Jauch and Representative Janet Bewley call the company's choice to hire the high security guards "appalling."

They want the guards removed immediately.

Republican Lieutenant Governor Rebecca Kleefisch was in Rhinelander Tuesday for a small business roundtable.

I asked her if Jauch and Bewley's request was reasonable.

"Well, I think we have a duty to make sure that those folks who are working to better that double-digit unemployment rate that we talk so much about are safe," she said.

There's no indication Gogebic Taconite will remove the guards any time soon.

The Lieutenant Governor's main mission in Rhinelander was meeting with people involved in small business.

She talked about the challenge of keeping up the workforce in the Northwoods.

"We don't have, nearby, very large city centers. You're looking at attracting a generation of millenials to an atypical location for millenials. That's a challenge we're going to have to overcome," she said.

About two dozen business and community leaders met with Kleefisch.

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WAUSHARA CO. - Authorities say a hunter has been killed by an apparent stray bullet in Waushara County.

Sheriff Jeff Nett says the 56-year-old Wild Rose man was hunting on his property in the Town of Mount Morris north of Redgranite Monday afternoon when he was hit. The sheriff says the man, Gregory Welk, was able to call 911 and his wife after he was shot.

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MADISON - Wisconsin needs more prison guards.

The Department of Corrections is implementing a new overtime policy as it deals with a shortage of workers.

Corrections officials say overtime will be assigned on a rotation system instead of forcing the newest officers to work those shifts when no one else has volunteered.

Veteran guards and sergeants will now be assigned overtime.

Corrections Secretary Ed Wall recently put the policy into effect, saying it will make prisons safer and would be fairer to all guards.

Wall in a memo said it would cut down on fatigue caused by multiple days of overtime for some employees.

The staffing shortage at Wisconsin prisons is acute with one in 10 security positions open.

(Copyright 2015 Associated Press - All Rights Reserved)

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PRESQUE ISLE - The Nature Conservancy protects more than 230,000 acres, and that's just here in Wisconsin.

TNC is a global non-profit working in all 50 states and 35 countries.

"Our mission in life has been to protect the lands and waters on which all life depends," said Wisconsin Chapter Director of Conservation Matt Dallman.

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RHINELANDER - Twenty-year-old Randall Lego still wore a neck brace as he sat in an Oneida County courtroom on Monday. Police believe Lego was driving drunk over the weekend when his car crashed and killed a 23-year-old passenger.

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TOMAHAWK - Some state lawmakers in Madison want schools to track and provide more crime data. That effort is now the focus of two different bills making their way through the state Legislature.

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MADISON - Wisconsin's embattled economic development agency has hired its sixth chief financial officer in just over four years.

The Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation announced the hiring of Brian Nowicki on Monday. His hiring comes after his predecessor, Brandon Duck, quit earlier this month after just seven months on the job.

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RHINELANDER - By the end of this week, Trig's Rhinelander Deli Manager Wendy Eades will be pretty tired of turkey.

"Yeah, I'm hoping someone else will cook mine," Eades said.

Considering that she'll have put together more than 50 full Thanksgiving meals by Thursday, you can't really blame her.

"We cook for you and you can take all the credit," Eades said.

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