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NEWS STORIES

More details on WPS plan to bury power linesSubmitted: 07/26/2013
Story By Lex Gray

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RHINELANDER - We learned more today about Wisconsin Public Services' five-year, $220 million project.

WPS doesn't want its customers to be out of power, so it will bury more than 1,000 miles of power lines underground.

The company chose mostly rural areas, like Vilas and Oneida counties, for the project.

That's because those areas have lots of trees that can fall on power lines during storms.

In the '50s, it wouldn't be uncommon for someone in the Northwoods to rack up days without power every year.

Thanks to efforts like tree-trimming, that number is way down.

"Today, we're talking minutes per year. There are still customers in the Northwoods that are still in hours per year, significant hours," said Richard Reitz, a WPS engineer. "We're targeting those areas where we can make the biggest improvement."

In 2014, WPS will bury lines in Minocqua and Boulder Junction.

They will also work on Highway 70 east of Eagle River.

Post Lake, Elcho, and Pelican Lake are also on the list for 2014, along with sections of Highway 101 in Wabeno.

In most places, existing poles and wires will be removed. Many lines will be bored 36 inches under the ground, while ther parts of the project will be a little messier.

"Other areas, we'll have to do some backhoe work," Reitz said. "We try to avoid backhoe work because it's mroe costly and there's more clean-up involved."

WPS has already contacted property owners who will be affected by the 2014 work.

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 IN OTHER NEWS
Wisconsin DNR reports $11.7m in timber salesSubmitted: 09/29/2014

WISCONSIN - The state Department of Natural Resources says Wisconsin saw record timber sales from state lands during the last fiscal year.

DNR Chief Forester Paul DeLong says timber sales totaled $11.71 million during the year that ended June 30. That's up from $10.8 million during fiscal year 2013.

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Naked, screaming man arrested at Capitol rotundaSubmitted: 09/29/2014

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MADISON - State officials are looking into how a naked man found his way into the Wisconsin state Capitol's rotunda.

The man appeared undressed in the rotunda around 4 p.m. Monday and began shouting at the top of his lungs. It was unclear what he was saying.

A Capitol Police officer quickly led him away.

Stephanie Marquis is a spokeswoman for the state Department of Administration, which oversees the Capitol Police. She says the man was screaming that he was Jesus Christ. She says he will be taken to jail on suspicion of disorderly conduct and lewd and lascivious behavior.

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Cranberry crop estimated at 5.3 million barrels; still a surplus in the marketSubmitted: 09/29/2014

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WISCONSIN - Cranberry growers don't expect another unprecedented harvest, but the industry does expect to keep Wisconsin's cranberry crown.

Wisconsin State Cranberry Growers Association Executive Director Tom Lochner says the state should produce 5.3 million barrels of cranberries from the 2014 harvest. Lochner says a barrel holds 100 pounds of cranberries.

The state produced 5.8 million barrels in 2013. Lochner credits the weather in September 2013 for that large harvest.

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Deer crashes may increase across the NorthwoodsSubmitted: 09/29/2014

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WAUSAU - You may start seeing more and more deer on the side of the road.

October is one of the worst months for deer crashes. Deer are on the move during that month because it is their mating season.

State patrol officers urge people to use caution when driving on dark highways.

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Inmate walks away from Marathon County JailSubmitted: 09/29/2014

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MARATHON COUNTY - Marathon County deputies want to find an inmate who walked away.

Tommie Rothenberger was let out of jail Friday morning to go to school at Northcentral Technical College. He never came back.

Around 4:25 p.m. Friday afternoon, a call came in saying Rothenberger was at a hotel in Clintonville with his girlfriend.

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Free internet marketing help offered to small businessesSubmitted: 09/29/2014

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ONEIDA AND VILAS COUNTIES - Small businesses can struggle to make their presence known.

Websites and social media could help them reach more people. But designing a website can be a challenge.

UW Extension will offer free internet marketing training to some Northwoods small businesses.

Small business owners and employees from Oneida, Vilas, Bayfield and Ashland counties can participate in the training.

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Learning in Retirement program offers variety of classes for retireesSubmitted: 09/29/2014

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LAC DU FLAMBEAU - Retiring in the Northwoods can be a great option for some people.

A local college wants to serve the community by offering classes for retirees.

Nicolet College's Learning in Retirement program offers everything from science classes to a tour of the WJFW studio.

"Learning is something, it becomes a passion to people. They've experienced it all through their lives. But it doesn't stop, we believe, at retirement," says Learning in Retirement past president Edward Lee.

Students in the Learning in Retirement program had the chance to learn more about Ojibwe culture.

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