Saturday Morning Wisconsin News Headlines

Posted: Saturday, April 20, 2013 -- 4:07 a.m.


Sand, sandbags available to Rock County residents

JANESVILLE, Wis. (AP) -- Rock County officials say residents who need sand or sandbags should contact local officials.

Pars of the Rock River, Turtle Creek and Sugar River are at or near flood-stage levels. Sheriff's Deputy Barbara Tillman says some homes have water in the yard, some have a few inches in basements and others have full basements.

High school students, fire departments, inmate crews and other volunteers have been filling thousands of sandbags and leaving them throughout the county so residents can easily access them.

The sheriff's department has posted phone numbers online that residents can call to get sand or sandbags. The participating locations are the townships of Beloit, Fulton, Harmony, Janesville, Milton and Rock.


Judge rejects stay in Wis. police union lawsuit

MADISON, Wis. (AP) -- A Madison judge has rejected a request to stay a police union's lawsuit challenging Republican Governor Scott Walker's polarizing collective bargaining law.

The law stripped most public workers of nearly all their union rights. The Wisconsin Law Enforcement Association filed suit in November alleging the law violates its members' free speech, association and equal protection rights.

The state Justice Department had asked Judge John Markson to hold off on the case until an appeals court weighs in on another Madison judge's decision to strike down the law as it applies to school and local government workers. DOJ attorneys argue the cases are similar and an appellate ruling would simplify matters.

But Markson disagreed Friday, saying the two cases deal with different parts of the law and have different plaintiffs.


Stamping company invests $20 million in expansion

(Information in the following story is from: Herald Times Reporter,

MANITOWOC, Wis. (AP) -- A Manitowoc stamping company is in the middle of a $20 million expansion that it says will allow it to add 100 jobs in the next year and a half.

Jagemann Stamping's CEO Tom Jagemann told the Herald Times Reporter the plant's 50,000-square-foot expansion will open in the fourth quarter of the year. Once the company is done adding jobs, it will have about 325 employees.

The company makes bullet casings, electrical connectors and automotive components.

Jagemann said much of the money being invested in the company is for new technology and equipment.

He says the company has received help from the state and private lenders with its expansion.


Memo shows huge tuition surplus at UW; GOP fumes

MADISON, Wis. (AP) -- A new Legislative Fiscal Bureau report shows the University of Wisconsin System finished fiscal year 2012 with nearly $650 million sitting in reserve, including $414.1 million in surplus tuition dollars.

The bureau released a memo Friday saying the tuition surplus was $212.8 million as of mid-2009 and $393 million as of mid-2011. Base tuition across the system's four-year schools has gone up 5.5 percent annually between mid-2009 and mid-2012.

Republican legislative leaders issued a statement blasting system administrators. They questioned how the system could justify raising tuition in light of the surplus and vowed to include a two-year tuition freeze in the 2013-15 state budget.

A spokesman says the system's cash balances have grown because of rising enrollment and the surpluses give the system a safety net in volatile times.


UW System head wants to limit tuition increase

MADISON, Wis. (AP) -- The University of Wisconsin System's president says he thinks he can limit tuition increases over the next two years.

Governor Scott Walker's 2013 to 2015 budget would provide the system with an additional $181.3 million dollars. System President Kevin Reilly said Friday that would enable him to recommend the Board of Regents limit tuition increases to 2 percent annually.

Base tuition across the system's four-year schools has risen 5.5 percent annually since the 2007-08 academic year. Increases have been steeper at schools that place additional tuition charges on students.

Reilly also announced he'll recommend reallocating $30 million to eliminate a waiting list for financial aid and offer more work-study positions. He also wants to invest $10 million in a program awarding credit for students' work experience and other knowledge they've already acquired.


Wis. dad accused of teaching son to choke another

(Information in the following story is from: Wisconsin State Journal,

MADISON, Wis. (AP) -- A 30-year-old Wisconsin father is accused of teaching one son how to choke the other unconscious -- a lesson allegedly caught on video.

Toribio Medina Junior of Fitchburg is charged with failure to act to prevent bodily harm of a child, strangulation and suffocation as party to a crime and child neglect resulting in bodily harm.

According to the complaint, a woman told police her two sons were staying with their father in Fitchburg during spring break when the video was made. It allegedly shows one boy choking his younger brother into unconsciousness, with the father telling his children how to do the maneuver.

The Wisconsin State Journal reports Medina was jailed Friday on $3,000 bail. He was ordered not to have any unsupervised contact with any children.


Wis. man pleads not guilty in wife's death, fire

(Information in the following story is from: The Journal Times,

RACINE, Wis. (AP) -- A Racine man has pleaded not guilty to charges that he strangled his wife and set the house they were staying in on fire.

Thirty-six-year-old Joseph Guerrero is accused of strangling Bianca Vite (vyte) at a Mount Pleasant home one of his relatives had rented.

Prosecutors say Guerrero was drinking and taking pills before arguing with his 21-year-old wife. He is accused of killing her just days before Christmas, then trying to set the house and himself on fire.

Firefighters found Vite's body on Christmas Day.

Guerrero is charged with first-degree intentional homicide, arson and mutilating a corpse. His defense attorney entered not-guilty pleas on Guerrero's behalf at Thursday's arraignment.

The Journal Times reports Guerrero remains jailed on $500,000 bond. His next court date is scheduled for June 14th.


Students raise money to pay man's lockdown ticket

(Information in the following story is from: Milwaukee Journal Sentinel,

WAUKESHA, Wis. (AP) -- Two Carroll University students have raised enough money to pay a man's ticket for carrying an air gun and causing a campus lockdown.

Seniors John Heavey and Emily Kammerud decided to organize an online collection after seeing a TV interview with the 50-year-old man.

The online page raised $360 in donations as of 10 p.m. Thursday.

Kammerud tells the Journal Sentinel the incident was "clearly an accident."

The lockdown lasted about 90 minutes Tuesday after two people reported seeing a man with a gun on campus.

Police say the man found the non-lethal weapon in the garbage and was carrying it back to his apartment when he was spotted on campus. He was cited for disorderly conduct.

A Carroll spokeswoman says the collection is not sanctioned by the university.

Copyright Associated Press 2013

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