SHULLSBURG - Little Shullsburg in southwestern Wisconsin doesn't have much of a skyline.
But a Northwoods tribe wants to change that with a new 10-story casino.
Lac du Flambeau tribal members have pushed for a large casino near Shullsburg, near Platteville, for more than a decade.
Monday night, hundreds of local people, elected officials, and Lac du Flambeau representatives packed into Shullsburg to talk about the casino plans.
Dubuque Telegraph-Herald reporter Andy Piper was at the meeting and spoke with us Tuesday.
"As far as the people down here go, I don't really see a whole lot of push-back as far as 'who do these people think they are, coming down here and building a big facility in our town'. People are really welcoming to that," Piper says.
The casino would include restaurants, a spa, and even a sportsman's club.
Lac du Flambeau tribal chairman Tom Maulson guessed it would create 600 jobs in the depressed Lafayette County area.
About 85 percent of the casino's jobs would be filled by locals.
"All in all, they figured at the very best, if things went exactly right, which probably won't happen, they thought they could be breaking ground in a couple of years. People in Shullsburg are patient for this one," Piper says.
The plan still needs to go through an environmental study and get approval from the federal Bureau of Indian Affairs and the governor's office.
If it's approved, it could break ground in 2015.
Off-reservation gaming is not uncommon for Northwoods tribes.
The Forest County Potawatomi runs Potawatomi Bingo Casino in Milwaukee.
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.”
MADISON - A federal appeals court has upheld Republican Gov. Scott Walker's public union restrictions.
The restrictions stripped most public workers of nearly all their collective bargaining rights. Two unions representing city of Madison and Dane County public workers filed a lawsuit in 2011 alleging the law violated their right to freely assembly and equal protection.
U.S. District Judge William Conley found the restrictions constitutional in September. A three-judge appeals panel affirmed Conley's ruling Friday, saying the U.S. Constitution doesn't require the state to maintain policies that allow certain associations to thrive.
Wisconsin Attorney General J.B. Van Hollen calls the ruling ``a victory for the law and for Wisconsin taxpayers.''
An attorney for the unions tells the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel he needs to talk to his clients before deciding whether to appeal.
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