ABBOTSFORD - It looks like the legislative discussion over mining is just getting started in the state.
Newly-elected representatives will be sworn in in January.
When they are, it will mean Republicans will have an even tighter hold on both houses of Wisconsin's legislature.
Abbotsford Representative Scott Suder (R) will return as Majority Leader.
He told us mining will be near the top of the list for the body to consider.
"One of the priorities for the State Legislature will be mining. We're working together, talking about mining, making sure that we come forward with a mining bill that both protects the environment as well as gives the opportunity for thousands of jobs statewide," he said.
A bill that would have relaxed the mine permitting process failed by one vote in the Senate earlier this year.
That meant Gogebic Taconite, which was pushing for an iron-ore mine in Iron and Ashland Counties, pulled its plans.
But now Republicans hold a three-vote majority in the State Senate.
Suder thinks passing a bill similar to the one last session would draw Gogebic back in.
"I do. I do. We're going to work with everyone involved - the DNR, not only companies that are interested, but we want to get it right. We're working with both Democrats and Republicans," he said.
Earlier this year, Democrats pushed hard to block sweeping mine permitting changes.
Northwoods filmmaker makes movies for the big screen
MERRILL - When you think of movies you probably think of Hollywood, but one man from Northcentral Wisconsin is bringing his feature film to the local screen.
Wausau’s Jarrod Crooks not only makes movies, but he also stars in them.
His latest film, "Dispatched" is based off the Elvis Presley movie, “Girl Happy,” says filmmaker Jarrod Crooks. “My character Jake is sent to go watch my bosses daughter while she’s on vacation with a friend. Then an old enemy is kind of after him while he’s on vacation, so some things happen.”
Crooks made, "Dispatched" on a $5,000 budget and it’s full of romance, action, and comedy.
“My buddy would joke with me, ‘why don’t you just pick one genre man and then just go with it'," says Crooks. "I’m like because I want to make this movie how I want to make It'." "I actually like romantic comedies, I think they’re kind of fun, and I think they’re cute. I like action films because I’m a guy, and I like comedy because Jim Carey is great.”
Crooks is only 28 and has already made 4 feature films. His passion started when he was 12 years old.
“I went over to my friend’s house and he had a video camera. I was like oh we should make a movie, and at that time I was really into, “Wishbone,” says Crooks.
“We’d always remake our own literature pieces. Then I saw my first Jackie Chan movie and I’m like, alright it’s settled we’re doing action films from now on," says Crooks. “From then on it was just a love affair with the filmmaking.”
His latest film will be shown at the Cosmo Theatre in Merrill on Saturday at 5pm.
“The fact that I’m bringing it to central Wisconsin is great because this is where I grew up," says Crooks. "All my family and friends get to see it, so I’m very excited about that and you get to see yourself on the big screen what’s better than that.”
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