Loading
Search
NEWS STORIES

Board chair: Lynne mining 'off the table' after convincing referendum vote TuesdaySubmitted: 11/07/2018
Ben Meyer
Ben Meyer
Managing Editor / Senior Reporter
bmeyer@wjfw.com

Board chair: Lynne mining 'off the table' after convincing referendum vote Tuesday
ONEIDA COUNTY - The Oneida County Board Chair used the term "off the table" to describe metallic mining in the town of Lynne going forward.

Nearly two-thirds of the county said "no" to mining exploration in an advisory referendum question on Tuesday.

The county board doesn't have to follow the wishes of voters in the referendum. But Chair Dave Hintz now calls the chances of the board moving forward on mining "remote."

"The answer was not yes. The answer was no," Hintz said Wednesday. "So, we will not go through that due diligence process, which means mining of the Lynne property is off the table, not on our agenda at this point."


The Lynne ore deposit contains valuable minerals below county-owned land in western Oneida County. Mining companies have showed interest for years. But it's also near the Willow Flowage, a major water resource in the county.

This year, the county board put the referendum question asking about mining on the November ballot.

"We would like to put this thing to bed for quite a while," said Jeff Brown, a Lynne resident and member of the Protect the Willow anti-mining group.

Brown calls the group a team of political "rookies." But nearly 12,000 Oneida County voters agreed with the group's message on Tuesday. Sixty-two percent of the county voted "no."

"The people across the board, Republicans and Democrats, have said, 'It doesn't matter what party we're at, we don't want a mine in Oneida County on the county forest land,'" Brown said.

Hintz admitted the board could act against the wishes of the voters, but said it wasn't likely.

"I think it's a remote possibility. I do not give that a strong chance of success," he said.

"We don't have a social license to lease our public lands in the town of Lynne for mining. I hope that our county board will listen to what their constituency has made clear," said Pete Zambon, who handled communications and coordinated canvasses for Protect the Willow.

The Lac du Flambeau Tribe also fought hard for a "no" vote, on the ground and through television commercials.

"I think the people have spoken loud and clear," said tribal president Joseph Wildcat Sr. "A lot of the tribal community is happy, and also, I think, the residents of an area like the Willow. We're all trying to protect the resources."

Hintz said he was most impressed by the Oneida County turnout. More than 19,000 people voted on the mining question.

Text Size: + Increase | Decrease -
| Print Story | Email Story
Sponsored in part by HodagSports.com





 IN OTHER NEWS

Play Video

RHINELANDER - Three emergency response vehicles sat outside Pizza Ranch in Rhinelander Wednesday night.

Not because of a fire, but because of a partnership. 

"Here we are here tonight raising money for the Little Rice ESU," said Little Rice Fire Department Chief Scott Pockat.

+ Read More

Play Video

RHINELANDER - Staff working in the YMCA's Children's Learning Center in Rhinelander enjoy what they do.

Many of the staff members have been there for 20 to 30 years. Some are looking to retire soon, which creates opportunities for new workers

They have full time and part time positions open. Those willing to get the proper certification to work there can get some help from the YMCA.

"We can help by tuition reimbursement," said YMCA Child Care Director Diane Zarembka. "There's a couple other programs out there, the T.E.A.C.H. program, that can help with getting people to take credit classes or getting certificates."

+ Read More

RHINELANDER - Nativity of our Lord Parish in Rhinelander will see more structural changes following the renovation of its worship space in February 2018.

+ Read More

Play Video

MATTOON - Wade Reimer thinks it's pretty simple.

There's a vacant school in the village of Mattoon, southeast of Antigo.

He wants to buy it and turn it into a Christian community center, and, someday, a school.

Reimer says the community is behind him.

But the Unified School District of Antigo is not.

In 2016, people in Mattoon fought as the district closed the school, saying rural elementary schools like Mattoon were too expensive to run. A year later, many of the same people tried unsuccessfully to open their own school district.

+ Read More

Play Video

RHINELANDER - Thursday the Rhinelander Armory will look like a war-era hospital.

No one is being treated, but rather helping others who will one day need medical help.

+ Read More

VILAS COUNTY - UPDATE 7/18/2019

An earlier version of this report conflated the two criminal complaints filed against contractor Gerald Stodola.

The first complaint filed February 14, concerns Stodola and a homeowner who alleges Stodola failed to inform the homeowner of a delay in construction. The first complaint also alleges theft by contractor.

The second complaint also filed February 14, concerns Stodola and the St. Germain Chamber of Commerce, whose leaders also allege theft by contractor. They believe Stodola used money meant for a new chamber building for other purposes.

The defense argued in both cases that the plaintiffs, both represented by the Asst. District Attorney, did not show probable cause in their complaints.

Judge Neal Nielsen rejected the defenses motion to dismiss the first complaint, saying the fact that Stodola did not finish the job he was hired to do was evidence enough to show probable cause.

Nielsen rejected the defenses motion to dismiss the second complaint because Stodla himself mentioned using funds for the St. Germain project for something else. Nielsen believed that showed probable cause.

Preliminary hearings for both cases are set for September 18, 2019.
______________________________________________________________________________________

ORIGINAL STORY 7/17/2019
_______________________________________________________________________________________

+ Read More

MADISON - Wisconsin Gov. Tony Evers is headed to Japan in September for his first trade mission.

The Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation says Wednesday that the trip it is coordinating will include stops in Tokyo, Yokohama and Chiba City. Evers will also be attending the Midwest U.S.-Japan Conference.

+ Read More
+ More General News
Search: