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NEWS STORIES

Small business online exchange access delayedSubmitted: 09/26/2013

Adam Fox
10 p.m. Anchor/Reporter
afox@wjfw.com

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ACROSS WISCONSIN - Small Businesses and uninsured Americans can buy health insurance on the federal exchange starting Tuesday, Oct 1.

People can do it online at healthcare.gov.

But small businesses won't be able to register online until November 1st.

The Obama administration said Thursday businesses can still enroll starting Oct. 1, but they'll have to do it over the phone or on paper.

Under the Affordable Care Act businesses with more than 50 employees will need to buy plans for their workers or be fined.

Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker worries about how that will affect their growth.

"We're going to try and do more to help them out in the private market, so that the folks who go beyond the exchange have as many options as possible, Walker said. "But it has been and will continue to be an issue for small businesses."

The Wisconsin Office of the Commissioner of Insurance worked with business owners at a small business summit in Stevens Point Wednesday.

The department tried to help small businesses understand what the changes mean for them. Melissa Remis owns a few small business in Wisconsin. She says those changes add uncertainty.

"There is some good stuff and some bad stuff about it, I am diabetic and I like the fact that I can't get turned down for insurance," Remis said.

But she adds those changes add uncertainty.

"How it's going to effect is still something that we will have to work out and figure out what's going to be best," Remis said.

According to the Department of Health and Human Services, most Americans could end up paying less than 100 dollars a month for health insurance on the federal exchange.

They'll be able to choose from up to four levels of plans.

People in Wisconsin will pay $361 a month for a mid-level coverage plan on the exchange. That's hirer than the $328 average nationwide.

A 27-year-old making $25,000 a year could get the low level bronze plan for $96 a month with help from a federal subsidy.

A family of four making $50,000 could get the low level bronze plan for $106 a month with help from a federal subsidy.







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Middle School students in Merrill work to get rid of invasive speciesSubmitted: 09/18/2014

MERRILL - Students at Prairie River Middle School in Merrill want to enjoy the river behind their school.

They spent time on Tuesday clearing out some of the invasive species along the riverbank.

"They're taking over and we need to get rid of them while there's still time," says 8th grader Morgan Henrichs.

Science teachers at Prairie River Middle School want to teach their students how to get rid of invasive species.

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Rhinelander Area Scholarship Foundation raffles neon Hodag signSubmitted: 09/18/2014

RHINELANDER - Rhinelander Area Scholarship Foundation is holding the 2014 Neon Hodag Sign Raffle.

Your support will help in raising scholarship money to award more scholarships for RHS graduates annually.

The RASF is a non-profit charitable organization with a volunteer governing board that raises money and distributes scholarships to Rhinelander students, many of whom may not get scholarship support from other sources.

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Search continues for missing boater in Kenosha Co.Submitted: 09/17/2014

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KENOSHA - Authorities have been searching a Kenosha County lake for a missing fisherman from Illinois.

The search on Silver Lake began Tuesday night after family members reported 66-year-old John Spoor of McHenry, Illinois, had not returned from his fishing trip. Sheriff's officials located the man's boat, but there was no sign of him.

Kenosha County Sheriff's Sgt. Bill Beth says the department had five boats on the water Wednesday. The search was halted Wednesday evening because of darkness, and the Kenosha News reports search teams are expected to return to the scene Thursday morning.

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Wisconsin one of 4 states to cut food stampsSubmitted: 09/17/2014

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MADISON - Wisconsin is one of only four states nationwide that is enacting cuts to the food stamp program.

An Associated Press review finds that as of now, the cuts will only affect Michigan, Wisconsin, New Jersey and New Hampshire.

The decision in Wisconsin to enact the cuts comes as Republican Gov. Scott Walker is seeking re-election and considering a 2016 run for president.

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Walker, Burke tied in latest pollSubmitted: 09/17/2014

MADISON - The race for Wisconsin governor couldn't be any closer with just seven weeks to go.

The Marquette University Law School poll released Wednesday shows Republican Gov. Scott Walker and Democratic challenger Mary Burke tied among registered voters.

Walker and Burke both had 46 percent support. The poll's margin of error was 3.5 percentage points among registered voters.

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Students learn about natureSubmitted: 09/17/2014

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TOMAHAWK - More than 50 fourth graders from Tomahawk learned about nature on Wednesday as part of long-lived education program. UW-Stevens Point staff at Treehaven host programs to teach elementary students about nature. The program has been around Tomahawk Public Schools for more than 25 years.

"We are doing a lot about the history of Tomahawk, the people that were here in the early 1800s and just a little bit about the land," explained Naturalist Rachel Anderson. "Right not we've been doing some tree identification and forestry measurements, but this morning they were learning about the voyagers and the Native Americans in this area."

The program covers more than just fall-learning, Treehaven leaders host learning programs in the spring and winter as well. You don't have to be a student to take part in some of the programs at the learning center. They include group hikes where you practice and discuss identifying plants and trees.

"We've had two this fall, and I'm hoping that is something we can continue to do in all seasons and continue to offer," said Anderson. "We've been getting a lot of positive reinforcement that it's something that the public is really interested in, so we hope to continue to offer more in the future."

Treehaven leaders regularly offer programs to the public involving nature, education, and artistry. If you are interested in learning more about these programs and events, you can follow the link listed below the article.

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During the first six months of 2014, more of the state's residents were convicted of driving with suspended licenses than speeding 11-19 mph over the limit.

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