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Board rejects offer to buy old WPS buildingSubmitted: 01/22/2014
Story By Lauren Stephenson

RHINELANDER - The Oneida County Board rejected an offer to purchase the old WPS building in Rhinelander.

Mike Boyd owns Boyd financial.

His business is growing and he needs more space.

Boyd offered three different proposals to the Oneida County Board.

One was to buy the building and renovate it if the county rented space from him.

Boyd suggested UW-Extension and the Land and Water Department use the space since both departments wanted to move.

Instead, the county decided Tuesday to move the Land and Water Department into the courthouse.

UW-Extension won't move from its location in the airport.

Boyd also offered to rent 40 percent of the space from the county.

That's if they agreed to remodel the building.

The County Board rejected all offers.

Mike Boyd says he's weighing all of his options and isn't sure what he'll do.

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 IN OTHER NEWS

MADISON - Big changes for Wisconsin's managed forest program cleared the state Senate.

The Program gives participants property tax breaks if they keep their land open to the public....and follow timber management plans.

Land owners can close their property, but get a smaller tax break and must pay a fee.

The bill would cap closed land at 320 acres.

Fees would be reduced for withdrawing from the program early.

Property owners would be able to lease their land.

The changes would eliminate local taxes on timber harvested from program land, but allow local governments to keep 80 percent of closed acreage fees.

Right now 100 percent of those fees go to the state forestry account.

The changes now go to the state Assembly.

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MADISON - Fire safety rules might prevent the use of real Christmas trees in some spots.

A bill now approved by the Assembly would ensure live trees are still allowed in churches and the state Capitol rotunda.

National Fire Protection Association guidelines call for banning live Christmas trees in places where 50 people or more gather.

The guidelines also allow limited quantities of combustible vegetation....if local fire officials decide adequate safeguards are in place.

Under the bill, the state and local governments would not be allowed to prevent placement of Christmas trees in the Capitol rotunda or in a church.

Trees in the rotunda and churches would be presumed to be safe during fire inspections.

The Assembly approved the bill Tuesday evening.

Now it goes to the state Senate.

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EAGLE RIVER - Vilas County's courthouse expansion could look a little different and sit in a different spot than previously agreed upon, but those changes could save close to a million dollars and speed up construction.  Tuesday, a county committee agreed that's a good path to take.

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WISCONSIN - Coyotes become more active and territorial this time of year.

That's because it's breeding season for the animals.

The DNR hopes people will take steps to avoid interactions with coyotes.

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We'll have the details on this story and more tonight on Newswatch 12 - news from where you live.

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ST. GERMAIN - You don't need to be Polish to enjoy freshly made Paczki. The deep-fried pastry is a Fat Tuesday favorite that's become popular in the Northwoods.

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MADISON - The state Assembly has approved a bill that would push the start of Wisconsin's wolf hunt back if the federal government allows the season to resume.

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