Assembly approves school hours billSubmitted: 03/18/2014
Story By Associated Press

Assembly approves school hours bill
MADISON - The Wisconsin Assembly has passed a bill that would end a requirement that schools teach for 180 days a year or lose state funding.

The Republican measure would allow schools to extend their days rather than force them to stay open later in the summer to make up time lost to weather-related closings and parent-teacher conferences. Schools that don't meet the hourly quota would still lose state aid.

Rural schools support the proposal as a way of saving money by keeping doors closed and avoiding higher transportation costs.

The Senate passed the bill last week on a voice vote. The Assembly approved it on a voice vote Tuesday. It now goes to Gov. Scott Walker.

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What We're Working OnSubmitted: 03/19/2018

- Tonight on Newswatch 12:

We'll show you the scene of an accident this afternoon on Highway 8 just outside of Rhinelander that closed traffic for at least a half hour.

We talk to the Vilas County sheriff and the jail administrator about a clerical error that temporarily gave an inmate an early release.

And we'll show you how people over 40 took advantage of a free vision screening today from the Rhinelander Lions Club.

We'll bring you all this and more tonight on Newswatch 12 - news from where you live.

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VILAS AND ONEIDA COUNTIES - Oneida and Vilas Counties will close their snowmobile trails this week. 

Lincoln County will also close its remaining trails. Zones 2 and 3 are already closed. Zone 1 will close at midnight on Monday, March 19.

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MINOCQUA - You can travel all of Latin America and Spain and never leave the dinner table in Minocqua.

Minocqua Brewing Company is hosting a " Tango, Tapas, and Tempranillo" wine dinner Tuesday night.

Getting culturally creative with food can be tough during a slow tourism season.

That's why learning about new cuisine and sharing it with the locals is the chef's favorite part.

"I have used Chimichurri for fifteen years, but to actually research and find out where it came from and the story behind it is kind of cool," says Chef Scott Conley.

Minocqua Brewing hosts a wine dinner and cooking class each month.

For more info, click the link below.

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TOMAHAWK - If you feel stir-crazy this time of year, taking a quick drive Tuesday afternoon might help.

Hometown Chiropractic in Rhinelander and Tomahawk hopes to spread smiles during, "Sunshine on the Streets."

The doctors will wave signs with their favorite positive quotes starting at 12:30 in the afternoon.

Chiropractors normally work to get your physical health in check, but they want to help your mental health, too.

"I want to say we are one of the smaller countries in the world, but we take almost 80 percent of the world's anti-depressants. So we want to make sure we have positivity energy and positive thoughts because it will help us heal better and feel better," says Dr. Grace Zuiker Nash.

"Sunshine on the Streets" also marks the First Official Day of Spring.

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WAUSAU - Seven of the Democratic gubernatorial candidates participated in a public forum this weekend. Citizen Action of Wisconsin held the event at the Wausau Labor Temple.

Citizen Action is a statewide grassroots organization. Dozens of people came out to hear the candidates' opinions on many topics including prison reform. health care, and rural broadband.

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WOODRUFF - Ice fishermen had until Sunday to move their ice shanties off the ice.

The Oneida County Dive Team knows that doesn't mean people won't still be out on the lakes.

Saturday, rescue divers geared up and got under the ice to be better prepared if anyone should fall through the ice this spring.

"They'll learn how to be self-reliant and how to rescue their partner," said Oneida County Dive Team dive master Laura Fuhrman.

Fuhrman and other team members participated in the team's annual ice rescue training.

"[Diving] is different in cold water," said Fuhrman.

Divers geared up with suits and equipment that weigh more than 100 pounds.

"It's a lot easier [to wear] underwater than it is walking with," said Fuhrman.

Divers had to rescue a fake victim and even one of their own teammates under the ice.

"We really stress safety in all our dives. But especially in an ice dive," said assistant dive team leader Michael Fraley.

Fraley has been a part of the team since it started more than a decade ago.

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MADISON (AP) - An environmental organization and the U.S. Forest Service are working together to harvest timber in northern Wisconsin.

Wisconsin Public Radio reports that the 2014 Farm Bill has allowed the two groups to enter into a stewardship agreement. The conservancy will hire loggers, sell timber and use the proceeds for projects the Forest Service can't afford to do.

The conservancy plans to use some money to restore Simpson Creek by rerouting the channel and exposing the gravel floor that fish need to spawn. The group also plans to rebuild a handicap accessible boardwalk on the Oconto River and will use funds to restore habitat for the endangered Kirtland's warbler.

Forest Supervisor Paul Strong says the Forest Service's budget has been stretched by efforts to fight wildfire that have become more frequent and more intense.

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