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NEWS STORIES

WisDOT leaders hopeful for increase in Northwoods railSubmitted: 04/24/2014

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ACROSS THE NORTHWOODS - Railroads give businesses a chance to move loads of material for a low cost. Loggers could use rail as an alternative to trucking material, but many businesses don't get that opportunity in the Northwoods anymore.

Canadian National bought rail in the Northwoods about a decade ago. They have cut back service drastically since then.

Some counties haven't seen train travel in years, which hurts business. Now, those businesses want to reestablish rail service.

In response, a group of counties in Northern Wisconsin and the Upper Peninsula of Michigan formed the Northwoods Rail Transit Commission.

Their goal is to bring back efficient rail to their counties. The group has been working with Wisconsin Department of Transportation (WisDOT) officials, like Dennis Leong, since forming the group in 2012.

Leong believes there is an opportunity to bring back rail to the region based off of the feedback from businesses and local governments.

"We did a survey of businesses in the Northwoods area and found potentially quite a few business interests in rail," Leong said. "They're meeting with CN (Canadian National) and having discussions, so hopefully maybe certain sections can be brought back to service."

Leong wants to help expand rail in the north, but private companies might only re-establish rail if they think they can make money on it.

"Part of the challenge is that you have to have the volume in which the railroads want to make sure they have an operating system to put back in service," Leong said.

Leaders at the Northwoods Rail Transit Commission are trying to win a multimillion dollar federal grant, TIGER, from the U.S. Department of Transportation to get more log cars for rail in the Northwoods. They'll host their monthly meeting Friday at 10 a.m. at the Oneida County Courthouse.

Wisconsin has 13 freight railroads using a system of more than 33 hundred mile of rail, according to WisDOT.



Related Weblinks:
Northwoods Rail Transit Commission

Story By: Adam Fox

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80-year-old dies after getting hit by trainSubmitted: 07/28/2014

WISCONSIN RAPIDS - An 80-year-old woman died Sunday in Wisconsin Rapids after getting hit by a train.

Police say Joyce Huber, 80, died at the scene.

Huber tried to cross the tracks and was hit by a Canadian National Railway train that was going south.

Police say the railroad crossing safety arms and lights were working.

They also say the train's horn was working.

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NATIONWIDE - You could spread fewer germs by going with the fist bump instead of a handshake.

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"That portion of our hands is subjected to every surface area, desktops, and countertops as well," said Oneida County Public Health Nurse Charlotte Ahrens. "We probably have a gazillion germs that are hitting that surface at any given point in time."

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Golden Harvest opens its doors at a new locationSubmitted: 07/28/2014

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Golden Harvest Market welcomed customers to their new location on County Road G Monday. The 17,000 square foot building has been under construction since November.

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Officials from the Department of Transportation, a highway contractor and the State Patrol planned a news conference Monday to highlight the change. They hope the steeper penalty will serve as a deterrent.

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74-year-old Duane Jussila's car was found underwater under about 10 feet of water in an area off of Alfred Wright Boulevard.

Jussila was reported missing July 5th. The man was suffering from dementia.

Police are still investigating.


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Merrill's downtown mural by student artists evokes history, cultureSubmitted: 07/28/2014

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Wisconsin man gets 9.5 years for drunk drivingSubmitted: 07/28/2014

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