Wisconsin roundup: Wausau police grant 'pity' to parking violator; chiropractors score victory with Assembly panel; 8 more state news briefs
WAUSAU — Police have granted a woman's request for "pity" after she committed a parking violation.
A Wausau police Facebook post from Monday showed a note left on a car parked in a lot with meters overnight, and the note read "Please take pity on me. I walked home ... Safe choices." Wausau Police responded by leaving a warning which read, "Pity granted, just a warning" and a fine showing zero dollars. The police Facebook post said that Wausau parking control officer Jim Hellrood appreciates people making "safe choices and a good sense of humor."
Assembly panel clears chiropractors to perform school athletic exams
MADISON — A Wisconsin legislative committee has signed off on a bill that would allow chiropractors to conduct sports physicals.
The Republican measure would require schools, technical colleges and University of Wisconsin System two-year schools that mandate physical exams to play sports to accept exams performed by chiropractors with certificates in health or physical examinations as defined by the state chiropractic examining board. The Wisconsin Interscholastic Athletic Association (WIAA) could only contract with schools if the association accepts chiropractors' exams.
The Assembly Health Committee approved the bill Tuesday by a 7-3 vote. The measure now goes to the full Assembly for a vote. Several groups oppose the measure, including the WIAA, the Medical College of Wisconsin and the Wisconsin Medical Society. The only group registered in support is the Wisconsin Chiropractic Association.
Assembly to vote on seeking U.S. constitutional convention
MADISON — The Wisconsin Assembly is scheduled to vote Wednesday on seeking the nation's first constitutional convention called by the states.
Republicans say they want to add an amendment requiring a balanced federal budget, but Democrats and other critics say it could also open the door to amendments limiting people's rights such as freedom of speech. Twenty nine states have called for such a convention, and 34 would be needed to hold it.
As part of that, lawmakers will also consider bills requiring Wisconsin delegates to follow national rules, work only on a balanced budget amendment, and dismiss those who stray into other areas. Also, the Assembly will consider a bill to require legislative approval for state agency rules that would cost businesses at least $10 millionin a two year period — and if lawmakers don't act within 70 days, the rules would be automatically rejected.
Senate to act on background checks for voucher school employees
MADISON — Employees in Wisconsin's private voucher schools would have to pass background checks as part of a bill up for approval in the state Senate Wednesday.
The bill would also get rid of some academic benchmarks that private schools meet if they take tax money to educate lower income kids — but education officials says voucher schools are still scrutinized in state report cards. The Senate is also expected to give final legislative approval to two bills aimed at fighting opioid and heroin abuse — and they call for involuntary commitments for drug addicts, and immunity from losing probation or parole if addicts enter treatment programs. Senators will consider bills to raise penalties for carjacking — make Wisconsin the final state to give government workers the day off on Veterans Day — let home bakers sell their goods without state licenses — and limit bans on deer baiting and feeding in areas with no new cases of chronic wasting disease.
Officials: Contaminated food sickened 60 in Chippewa Falls
CHIPPEWA FALLS — State health officials say contaminated food is what caused at least 60 people to get sick with the novovirus at a recent Kids' Day festival in Chippewa Falls.
Now, officials are trying to find out which food caused the gastroenteritis outbreak, which occurred at the Northern Wisconsin State Fairgrounds last month. State health services spokeswoman Jennifer Miller tells the Eau Claire Leader Telegram that multiple stool samples showed that the illnesses were not passed on from person to person.
People generally recover from the novovirus in several days after getting things like diarrhea, vomiting, and fatigue. Tom Leuck, who organized the Kids Day event, said all the food handlers wore gloves as they served.
Testimony begins in Milwaukee police shooting trial
MILWAUKEE — Testimony begins Wednesday in the trial of fired Milwaukee police officer Dominique Heaggan Brown in last summer's shooting death of Sylville Smith which triggered two nights of violence.
In opening arguments Tuesday, Heaggan Brown's lawyer says his client acted in self defense — and he had to make a "split second" decision when he shot Smith at the end of a foot chase that lasted 12 seconds. District Attorney John Chisholm says two shots hit Smith, and the first one was justified — but the second one came after Smith dropped his gun, and it was made at point blank range with the victim lying on his back. At that point, Chisholm said the use of force was not needed "to stop an imminent threat."
Trump: Major electronics manufacturer could come to Wisconsin
PEWAUKEE — President Donald Trump told a Wisconsin audience that a top maker of TVs, computers, and phones could soon locate in the state.
Trump did not identify the company or the possible location in his remarks at Waukesha County Technical College Tuesday — but he said he was negotiating "backstage" with what he called "a major, major incredible manufacturer" that Trump thought "would give the governor a very happy surprise soon." The president also took part in a roundtable discussion on jobs and education at the tech school — and he headlined a campaign fundraiser in Milwaukee for GOP Gov. Scott Walker.
Trump also used his airport arrival to describe two couples whom he called "victims" of Obamacare, saying that Robert and Sarah Stoll of Burlington saw their premiums double, causing Sarah to take an extra job and lose the family's tax credits. The comments came one day after reports that 211,000 Wisconsinites are on Obamacare for the full year — and Democrats said those people might not be insured if it wasn't for the Affordable Care Act.
Report: Wis. edges up to 12th for children's well-being
Wisconsin is the 12th best state for children's well-being.
That's one place higher than the last three years, according to the annual "Kids Count" survey from the Annie E. Casey Foundation. The survey ranks Wisconsin eighth for kids' economic well-being, up from 13th last year. it's the ninth-best state for education, down two spots.
The Badger State is also 18th for family and community backing, same as in 2016. It’s 28th for health factors, up one spot. Ken Taylor, who heads the Wisconsin Council on Children and Families, says the state used to be a national leader in providing for children's health, but he notes that public investments in family programs have played a "huge role" in making kids' outcomes better as 16 percent of Wisconsin kids live in poverty, less than the national average of 21 percent.
Cleanup continues 4 weeks after Chetek tornado
CHETEK — It was four weeks ago Tuesday when a tornado virtually destroyed a mobile home park near Chetek and killed one of its residents.
Now, travelers on the Highway 53 expressway can still see wreckage from the storm, and officials are asking people to provide excavation equipment and skid steers to place the large debris into dumpsters. Darryl Dahl of the Chetek Chamber of Commerce tells television station WQOW that many retirees live in the area, and they cannot move the wreckage themselves.
Many in the mobile home park were under-insured and do not have the resources to remove debris on their own. Large piles of debris have been sitting since the May 16 tornado. Once it's removed, it will go to Barron County's Waste Energy facility.