MADISON - The state Justice Department wants to spend another $788,000 to keep up with concealed carry applications.
People have overwhelmed DOJ with applications since a law legalizing hidden weapons in Wisconsin went into effect in November. The agency has received more than 120,000 applications so far.
DOJ has hired about 30 new employees to process applications and perform background checks on handgun buyers, but training time, worker turnover and the sheer number of applications and checks has slowed the agency.
DOJ officials asked the Legislature's budget committee on Wednesday for $384,500 to hire eight employees to replace eight limited-term concealed carry workers. The agency also wants $358,000 for more supplies and $46,000 to cover a new firearms unit supervisor and employee promotions.
ANTIGO - Despite having to poke her fingers, and inject insulin throughout the day, 7 year old Meredith smiles all the time. Now YOU can make her smile even brighter.
This is the race car Meredith Meidl designed for Ford's "Real Heroes Contest" benefitting the Juvenile Diabetes Research Fund. Meredith knows a lot about diabetes. She's had the disease since she was 2.
"I just (clicks) and then I push it on my finger and I squeeze my finger and then I put my blood into the strip and it reads my blood," said Meredith demonstrating how she tests her blood sugar.
LAC DU FLAMBEAU - The back-and-forth between state lawmakers and the Lac du Flambeau tribe might be over.
Dean Kaufert is a Republican representing Neenah. He wanted to strip a quarter-million dollars of funding from the tribe. That money would have gone to fund a new cultural center.
His original move was a protest against the Chippewa lowering walleye bag limits. That happened on many lakes in the ceded territory this spring.
"I was kind of having some difficulty with some of my colleagues in the Legislature with convincing them that we needed to play hardball by holding this project back," says Rep. Kaufert.
Walleye spearing season by Chippewa fishermen is almost over. They only took about half as many as they expected. So, the DNR raised limits on 423 lakes in the ceded territory.
Kaufert now will not stand in the way of the cultural center money.
"The Governor asked me if I would consider releasing that project due to their ongoing discussions about trying to create a better environment up north for fish stocking and number of walleyes in our lakes," says Rep. Kaufert.
This week, Governor Scott Walker also proposed a state project to put more walleye in Wisconsin's lakes.
RHINELANDER - Rhinelander kindergartener Carlie Jahn watched her dad leave for his third overseas tour of duty last fall.
Usually, she gets to see him for two-weeks during his nine-month tour. But there was no leave for Guardsmen Justin Jahn this year. He will be in Afghanistan until July.
Instead of too much sadness, Carlie's mom is helping her by sharing at school.
"Once that time came through, it was hard for her to understand why he wasn't coming home. I thought this would be a fun way to have her realize that she's not the only one, that there's others out there," says Amanda Jahn.
Jahn talked with grade schoolers at Crescent Elementary today about living with a family member in the military.
Students also recognized veterans and active soldiers related to them.
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