Wisconsin roundup: River Falls' Van Galen among UW chancellors receiving raises; Wis. recount close to finishing; 10 more state news stories
MADISON -- Five veteran chancellors of UW campuses around the state will get pay raises of 4 to 6 percent for the next year.
The university's Board of Regents has approved the special raises so each leader will make $220,000 per year. They are the first such increases since 2013.
Officials say it was done so the chancellors' pay can keep up with their peers around the country. The five recipients are chancellors Joe Gow at La Crosse, Dennis Shields at Platteville, Dean Van Galen at River Falls, Renee Wachter at Superior, and Deborah Ford at Parkside.
Wis. recount close to finishing
MADISON -- State officials say Wisconsin's presidential recount will finish Monday — a full week before the Electoral College registers the state's 10 votes for Republican Donald Trump.
As of Friday, all but seven of the 72 counties were done. That does not include Dane County, which completed its tally on Saturday night in Madison. As of Friday, only about 150,000 of the state's nearly 3 million ballots had not been counted.
There continued to be virtually no change from the election night tally, as 1,400 votes were added to the statewide total and Democrat Hillary Clinton gained only 25 net votes on Republican Donald Trump -- but that difference looks to be a little wider Monday morning, as Clinton gained 172 votes while Trump stayed the same. Dane County was the largest to conduct its recount totally by hand.
Wisconsin officials OK first pro-life plates
MADISON -- Wisconsin transportation officials have gotten the go-ahead to produce the state's first anti-abortion license plates.
The plate by Choose Life Wisconsin, Inc., was approved Nov. 30. The idea for the plate was referred to the Legislature's transportation committees after a 30-day public review ended Nov. 13.
The Division of Motor Vehicles received 26 objections to the plate, but the committees didn't notify DMV about any need for further review, signaling the plate's approval. Motorists will be able to start buying the plate within the next year. The additional $25 annual cost will go to pregnancy resource centers.
Democrats rip second round of state park fee-hike proposals
MADISON -- A DNR spokesman says his agency is not pushing hard to have lawmakers raise state park fees for the second time in two years.
That's after Democrats said the proposed increases for next year could be unaffordable for families, and naming rights would not be enough to keep the parks going without state tax support. In the current budget, Republicans ended state tax dollars for parks -- and there was a corresponding increase of up to $11 in admission and camping fees at the most popular locations -- but the DNR still projects a $1.4 million deficit per year in the current park budget, and Republicans want the agency to look for new revenue sources.
The DNR says it's not specifically advocating what it came up with -- further increases of up to $10 in admission and camping fees, plus naming rights to park facilities, among other things. Gov. Scott Walker will decide what to recommend to lawmakers when he submits his next budget in February.
Duluth Trading Co. brings more than 100 jobs to Wis. community
MOUNT HOREB -- The Duluth Trading Co. says it wants to move its corporate headquarters to Mount Horeb.
The move would bring 100-150 jobs to western Dane County, meaning an expected $20 million boost to the local economy. A new building would go up in the downtown area.
The jobs would be added to the 100 mostly marketing jobs already located in the Mount Horeb Innovation Center. The Duluth Trading call center would stay in Belleville, where a 75-,000 square foot addition was built last summer.
Students injured in Sparta school bus-pickup crash
TOWN OF ANGELO -- The Monroe County Sheriff's Office reports the injuries suffered by students on a Sparta Area School District bus Friday were all minor ones.
The accident involving the school bus and a pickup happened at about 3:30 p.m. in the town of Angelo. Pickup driver Robert Brueggen was trapped inside his vehicle after the collision, forcing rescuers to use the Jaws of Life to get him free. There were 37 students on the bus. Fourteen of them, along with driver David Ames, suffered minor injuries.
Snow piles up around state
Parts of southern Wisconsin get the brunt of the weekend's big snowstorm, though Pierce and St. Croix counties also saw accumulation.
The National Weather Service reported 5.5 inches was recorded in River Falls, while Roberts saw 5 inches of snow from the storm, which hit Saturday and lasted into Sunday.
The NWS says Elkhorn got the most with 9.1 inches. La Crosse, Janesville, Monroe, Delavan, Racine, and the Milwaukee area all had 8-9 inches. Sturgeon Bay had more than 7 -- and Wausau, Plover, and Westfield all had 6-7 while in the north, Lac du Flambeau reported 8 inches but most places in the Northwoods and far northwest Wisconsin only had about 3-5 inches after getting dumped late last week.
Weather Service meteorologist Dave Schmidt calls the storm a "slap of reality" after November's warm and relatively dry weather. This week is supposed to be anything but warm, as a cold front moves in Tuesday and drops temperatures below zero in the north early Wednesday morning.
Priebus: Russians didn't hack RNC to help Trump win
WASHINGTON -- Wisconsin native Reince Priebus says it's not true that Russians hacked the Republican National Committee's computers to help Donald Trump win the White House.
Priebus, the Kenosha native who's nominated as Trump's chief of staff, went on ABC's "This Week" to refute a reported CIA conclusion that Russia most likely hacked into the Republicans' computers to hurt Democrat Hillary Clinton's chances of winning. Priebus, who's leaving after six years as head of the RNC, says someone's been talking "out of line" about something that's "absolutely not true." Senators from both parties have called bipartisan efforts to examine the alleged hacks, and look for new ways to defend the United States from cyber attacks.
Three missing kids sought in Green Bay
GREEN BAY -- Police say they're looking for three young children missing since Sunday afternoon in Green Bay.
Officials say 11-year-old Amarria Alexander, 10-year-old Arshawne Alexander, and 6-year-old Tremaih Williams were last seen playing at Joannes Park near Green Bay East High School. Police say there's no evidence that the youngsters were abducted, but officials have still notified the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children.
Also, officers have checked the nearby East River -- but there were not any fresh footprints after Sunday's snowstorm. About 5 inches of snow fell in the Green Bay area, and the storm had ended not long before the youngsters were reported missing.
Viterbo prepares for new leadership
LA CROSSE -- Viterbo University in La Crosse prepares for new leadership, as it honors its outgoing president.
More than 100 people attended a retirement celebration this past week for Richard Artman, who spent more than 10 years as Viterbo's eighth president. His accomplishments include a successful $42 million capital fundraising campaign, a new school of nursing facility, and a $20 million growth in Viterbo's endowment fund to almost $45 million. Artman announced his retirement last summer, and academic affairs vice president Glena Temple will succeed him once Artman leaves at the start of the New Year.
Baldwin hopeful for new fighter jets in Madison
WASHINGTON -- Wisconsin's Democratic senator says she's hopeful Madison will land a new fighter wing.
U.S. Sen. Tammy Baldwin says the state is a "strong competitor" for a new wing of F-35 fighter jets. The jets, and a number of new jobs, would go to the Wisconsin Air National Guard's Truax Field in Madison. No word when a final decision will come.
Wisconsin schools struggle to find teachers for tech-ed classes
MADISON -- Manufacturers say they have the good-paying jobs available, but they can't find skilled workers.
Everybody agrees schools need to educate students in the lucrative fields. The problem is a lack of educators qualified to teach. Schools say experienced technical education teachers are retiring and colleges aren't producing enough to fill the high school openings.
Some companies are apparently considering moves out of Wisconsin to areas where they can get the workers they need. With more than a dozen openings for tech-ed teachers, some who are certified in one discipline are returning to college to get the credits they need -- so they can teach those classes.