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NEWS STORIES

Gov. Walker delivers second budget addressSubmitted: 02/21/2013
Story By Lane Kimble

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MADISON - (For full reaction, play attached video)

Governor Walker remained true to message at his second budget address Wednesday night. Jobs, school choice and lightening the load on taxpayers seem to be key points to his next two-year plan.

Walker released bits and pieces of his plans throughout the last few weeks. One of the more anticipated points was Walker's promise to drop income taxes on middle class taxpayers by $343 million.

The mood and responses were mainly partisan. But where tax cuts might have helped reach across the aisle, a mainly divided joint legislature moved farther apart when school choice came up.

The Governor wants to use this budget to reward high performing schools and require underperformers to improve or lose out on money. But Democrats, especially in Northern Wisconsin, aren't buying it.

Now, the big question remains on how much of the budget makes it through the legislature by the June deadline. Northwoods Republican representative Rob Swearingen remains optimistic.


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 IN OTHER NEWS
Mining company pushes back permit timelineSubmitted: 08/27/2014

MILWAUKEE - Gogebic Taconite will take longer than originally planned to apply for a mining permit in northern Wisconsin.

The company says its application to develop an iron ore mine in Ashland and Iron counties will be pushed back until at least the fall of next year.

Gogebic had planned to submit an application in the spring of 2015 to develop a 1.5 billion dollar iron ore mine in the Lake Superior region.

A company spokesman says Gogebic won't finish all fieldwork this year and will be forced to conduct additional environmental work next year.

The approaching of fall is prompting Gogebic to wrap up some fieldwork already.

(Copyright 2014 Associated Press - All Rights Reserved)

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Small businesses like new grocery store find success in Boulder JunctionSubmitted: 08/26/2014

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BOULDER JUNCTION - One thousand people live in Boulder Junction. Small businesses may struggle in towns that are a similar size. But that's not necessarily the case for the small Northwoods community.

"We're working hard at it. It's been good," said Coontail Market co-owner Steve Coon.

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ArtStart takes next step with new development directorSubmitted: 08/26/2014

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RHINELANDER - In the last three years, ArtStart in Rhinelander grew from an idea to a highly successful gallery and event space.

This month, ArtStart took its next step.

The organization hired its first full-time employee - development director Melinda Childs.

She's been impressed to see the arts appetite in Rhinelander.

She comes from an arts-rich community in the Twin Cities.

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Woman faces felony for illegally keeping a gun and selling itSubmitted: 08/26/2014

ONEIDA COUNTY - A 28-year-old Merrill woman faces a felony for illegally keeping a gun. She also sold it to an undercover police officer.

Bonnie Wolff was arrested earlier Tuesday morning for selling a stolen assault rifle officer in Rhinelander. Wolff is a convicted felon. She's not allowed to have a gun under state law.

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Vilas County denies another referendum for ATV trails in Phelps, approves access for County Highway A to Forest County ATV trails Submitted: 08/26/2014

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PHELPS - Voters in Vilas County didn't want ATV's or UTV's on County roads or property in 2004. Tuesday, the County Board was considering asking voters about that topic again.

That won't happen. The county board voted 14 to 5 not to put an ATV question on this fall's ballot.

The county held a referendum in February of 2004. More than 60 percent of voters said they didn't want ATV'S or UTV's on county roads or properties.

The Vilas County Board chairman told the crowd he was against having the referendum again Tuesday night, but he still wanted to give the people what they wanted.

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Federal appeals court hears arguments over Wisconsin gay marriage banSubmitted: 08/26/2014

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CHICAGO - Gay couples in Wisconsin could find out soon if they can legally marry in the state.

Federal appeals judges heard arguments on Wisconsin's gay marriage ban in Chicago Tuesday.

A federal judge struck down the ban in June, but the state is appealing to a higher court. The case has been combined with a similar case coming from Indiana, which also has a constitutional ban on gay marriage.

Camilla Taylor was representing one of the gay couples in the suit. She said the judges were focused on how the ban impacts the children of gay couples.

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Woman who tried to hire someone to kill fiance will spend about three years in prisonSubmitted: 08/26/2014

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WAUSAU - Jessica Strom will spend about three years in prison for offering a man $1,000 and sex to kill her fiance.

The 33 year old Merrill woman was sentenced Tuesday.

"Out of the billions of people that could potentially be partners in life [the] two of you chose the single worst combination," says Circuit Court Judge Neal Nielsen.

Strom's fiance was former Lincoln County district attorney John Schellpfeffer.

The state argued this wasn't the first time Strom and Schellpfeffer had problems.

"In 2009 there was a criminal damage to property complaint, disorderly conduct," says Prosecuting Attorney Ralph Uttke. "Mr. Schellpfeffer called saying Ms. Strom was smashing the window to his house with a hammer and left, she was arrested a short time later."

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