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Legislature may see little action in 2014Submitted: 01/02/2014
Legislature may see little action in 2014
Story By Associated Press

MADISON - Disagreement between political parties bogs down the legislative process.

Now even members of the same party are having trouble argeeing on what should be done.

Republicans who control the Wisconsin state Senate and Assembly have different ideas on a number of issues facing the Legislature in 2014.

That is setting up a session that may be marked more by what doesn't get done that what does.

Caught in between the two chambers are anti-abortion bills, changes to the Common Core academic standards and proposals cracking down on drunken driving.

Lawmakers hope to get done by mid-March so they can hit the campaign trail.

So there's not a lot of time to work out their differences.

(Copyright 2014 Associated Press - All Rights Reserved)


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 IN OTHER NEWS

MADISON (AP) - A recent report by the Wisconsin Department of Justice on criminal sex offenses says most victims of sex crimes in the state are teenagers.

The Wausau Daily Herald reports that the data figures broken down by county also show that most offenders are also teenagers under the age of 18.

The report says that the most common relationship to victims statewide and in central Wisconsin counties is someone that knows the victim, but isn't related. The category includes: "acquaintance, employee, employer, neighbor, roommate, and other domestic violence victim."

The statewide average rate for all sex offenses has been steadily rising since 2013. There was about a 14 percent increase from 2013- 2017 in Wisconsin's average rate for sex offenses.

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NEWBOLD - The Newbold Fire Department held its annual picnic Saturday, but this year it wasn't just about fundraising for the fire station.

The department was also celebrating a special milestone. 

The Newbold Fire Department, which started in 1968, had its 50th anniversary this year. At the picnic, there was a display and tables full of old pictures from the station's past.

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MINOCQUA - For the last two years, the Minocqua Dragon Boat Festival has partnered with the Howard Young Foundation to raise money for area hospitals.

At this year's festival, a new cause took center stage.

The Howard Young Foundation is leading an initiative to develop a research and treatment center for tick-borne illnesses in the Minocqua area.

All funds raised from the Dragon Boat Festival will go toward the center's construction.

Foundation president Erin Biertzer was pleased with how many people turned out to help.

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MADISON (AP) - Wisconsin has recorded its first human cases of West Nile virus this year.

The Wisconsin Department of Health Services says the case was confirmed in a Dane County resident.

Health officials are advising Wisconsin residents to continue protecting themselves against mosquito bites.

The department says the majority of human West Nile cases in the state happen in August and September.

West Nile virus is spread to people through the bite of an infected mosquito and is not transmitted person to person.

The state documented its first human infections from West Nile in 2002. Last year, 51 cases of West Nile infection were reported among Wisconsin residents.

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MARSHFIELD -
UPDATE: On Saturday Michael Atkins was located, according to a press release form the Marshfield Police Department

Police say around 3:20 p.m. a traffic stop was made by Marshfield officers near the intersection of E Veterans Pkwy and N Vine Ave after a receiving a driving complaint involving a vehicle and driver believed to match descriptions associated with Atkins.

The driver was identified as the missing 17-year-old Michael Atkins. Atkins was transported to the department and was reunited with his mother. The investigation is ongoing. 

The Marshfield Police Department expressed thanks to the community for the ongoing support and gratitude for all those who assisted with tips and information which ultimately led to the safe return of Michael.

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PRICE COUNTY - A pair of Northwoods school districts could start the year without teachers to lead certain classes. Teacher shortages have left some districts looking for options to provide a full education. 

"It's very hard to find top quality teachers anymore," said Prentice District Administrator Randy Bergman.

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EAGLE RIVER - On Friday night, expect the line at the Eagle River ice arena to be out the door.

People in the area always look forward a tradition in its 56th year.

The Eagle River Recreation Association hosts a huge auction in mid-August.

"It keeps the lights on in this place. To run a rink is extremely expensive. We try to the best we can with what we have here to bring down those fees so hockey and skating becomes affordable for everybody up here," said ERRA President Patrick Schmidt.

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