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Judge blocks new abortion law in WisconsinSubmitted: 07/09/2013
MADISON - A federal judge in Wisconsin blocks the state from enforcing a new and restrictive abortion law.

The law bans doctors from performing abortions if they don't have admitting privileges to hospitals within 30 minutes of their practice.

U-S District Judge William Conley granted the hold Monday after planned parenthood of Wisconsin filed suit.

The group claims the admitting privilege requirement is unconstitutional.

Judge Conley agreed it treats doctors who perform abortions differently from doctors who perform other types of medical procedures.

Opponents of the law say the decision is a huge win for Wisconsin women, even if it is temporary.

The restraining order will stay in place pending a hearing July 17th.

The law, which took effect Monday, also requires women to have an ultrasound before getting an abortion.

That portion of the law was not challenged in the planned parenthood suit.


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MOLE LAKE - When you drive through Mole Lake, you'll notice a lot of solar panels.

It's part of a project tribal leaders have worked on for more than a year, and they hope it will save the community a lot in energy costs.

Tribal leaders applied and received a couple million dollars in grants from the U.S. Energy Department and the Housing and Urban Development Department. Then they started working with a Pewaukee-based company called SunVest Solar, Inc., and started installing the panels on homes and businesses in 
September.

Now, they are almost done.

According to SunVest Solar, this is the largest per capital solar array installation in the Midwest. Tribal Administrator Jeff Ackley, Jr., says 50 homes and 17 businesses have solar panels.

"Most of the state of Wisconsin has less than one percent of its generation coming from solar and now you have a community where almost 50 percent of the homes get their power from the sun," said Adam Gusse, head of operations at SunVest Solar, Inc.

"I thought it would put us on the map," Ackley said.

Project leaders think the panels can produce up to 85 percent of power in homes and between 20 and 60 percent for businesses.

"It will be significant savings all around for the community," Ackley said. "From rough crunchings of numbers we're looking at probably saving between $60,000 and $80,000 per year on energy usage."

The first batch of panels turned on in November, and some people say they've already seen the savings.

"Some are seeing up to $100 in savings just after that first month," Gusse said. "So they'll see much more per month savings as they go on."

Gusse said the panels don't produce as much power in the winter as they will in the summer, but residents still save money.

Tribal leaders can apply for more grants to put panels on more homes. 

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