March 27, 2017
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NOW: 44°
HI 46 / LO 37

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Today's forecast: Rain and drizzle

Rain and drizzle late this afternoon. High: 48; low: 37.

Up to the minute forecast

State eyes safety network changes

MADISON (AP) - Wisconsin officials are working to determine how to improve the statewide emergency communications network and who will pay for it.

The Wisconsin Interoperable System for Communications allows public safety agencies to communicate with one another across the state, and sometimes coverage can be spotty, Wisconsin Public Radio reported. The state hired a consultant last year to examine networks in surrounding states and provide recommendations for maintaining Wisconsin's system.

"What we don't have right now is a good plan for when the equipment on WISCOM reaches end of life," said Josh Ripp, a program manager for the network at the Wisconsin Department of Justice. "We don't have an idea of how we're going to pay for the replacement equipment to put in that place."

The system went live on 80 state-owned towers in 2012 and has grown to include nearly 120 sites. Each Wisconsin county or community that provided the infrastructure for a network site also pays for tower maintenance.

Monthlong trek ends at Lambeau

GREEN BAY (AP) - A man using a wheelchair finished a 170-mile journey from southern Wisconsin to Lambeau Field.

Dennis Schulze, 55, arrived Saturday at the Green Bay stadium, accompanied by a crowd of about 40 people including families and law enforcement. Instead of using a wheelchair, Schulze put on a prosthetic leg and walked the last mile to honor those who cannot walk.

Schulze got to meet Green Bay Packers general manager Ted Thompson and briefly stand on the famous field.

Schulze started his trip from Janesville in February. The Beloit native lost his right leg five years ago in a truck crash. He now makes wheelchair travels for charity and says his journey to Lambeau is not the last of his travels.

Slain detective, other victims remembered

ROTHSCHILD (AP) - The police detective killed in a string of shootings that left three others dead and the suspect injured is being remembered as a friend who would help another person in an instant.

Jason Weiland, 40, was a detective for the Everest Metro Police Department. He died Wednesday when he was shot in the line of duty. Some of his friends told the Wausau Daily Herald that they remember him as funny, sensitive and tough.

Nengmy Vang, 45, is accused of launching a rampage that spanned three northern Wisconsin towns on Wednesday, killing his wife's divorce attorney, two people at the bank where his wife worked, and Weiland.

After allegedly killing three people at two different locations, Vang barricaded himself in his Weston apartment, fatally shooting Weiland as Weiland was setting up a perimeter.

A candlelight vigil for all four of the victims is scheduled for 7 p.m. Sunday at Kennedy Park in Weston.

Today's forecast: Wet

Not as cool today with rain and drizzle. High 55, low 44.

Up to the minute forecast

Voters to field 65 public school referendums

MADISON (AP) - The push by Wisconsin public schools to ask for more money from local property taxpayers isn't stopping, with 65 referendums going before voters in the spring election.

That comes after 122 were approved in 2016, the continuation of a trend that began three or four years ago as schools struggled to make ends meet under state-imposed spending limits, budget tightening and changing student populations with a growing range of needs.

Around 80 percent of school referendums passed last year and voters approved $1.35 billion in new borrowing, the largest amount in two decades when adjusted for inflation, according to data from the Wisconsin Taxpayers Alliance.

About half the districts will ask voters on April 4 to authorize new debt while the other half want permission to exceed revenue caps, which limit spending to meet property taxes and state aid.

Four-vehicle crash in Somers

Emergency crews were called about 4 p.m. for a four-vehicle crash in the 10600 block of Burlington Road.

Louisiana officer convicted of manslaughter in boy's death

A Louisiana law enforcement officer was convicted today on a lesser charge of manslaughter in a shooting that killed a 6-year-old autistic boy, a gruesome encounter captured on tape by another officer's body camera.

Jurors found Derrick Stafford guilty of manslaughter and attempted manslaughter charges, multiple news outlets reported. He had faced charges of second-degree murder and attempted second-degree murder in the case.

Walker expresses disappointment with inaction on health bill

Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker is expressing disappointment with the failure of the Republican health care bill in Congress.

Walker said in his statement that "Obamacare was broken from the beginning and every day it has not been fixed is disappointing." Walker earlier today urged the House to take action on replacing the Affordable Care Act, also known as "Obamacare."

Wisconsin makes legal arguments in redistricting appeal

Wisconsin's Republican attorney general is telling the U.S. Supreme Court that a ruling striking down GOP-drawn legislative boundaries in the state as unconstitutional gerrymandering is "unprecedented."

Attorney General Brad Schimel presented the state's legal arguments in a court filing in the case today. Schimel had notified the court of his intent to appeal last month, but did not make any arguments then.

Trump, GOP leaders pull health care bill in humiliating loss

In a humiliating setback, President Donald Trump and GOP leaders pulled their "Obamacare" repeal bill off the House floor today after it became clear the measure would fail badly.

It was a stunning defeat for the new president after he had demanded House Republicans vote on the legislation today, threatening to leave "Obamacare" in place and move on to other issues if the vote failed. The bill was withdrawn minutes before the vote was to occur.

Hawaii judge who blocked travel ban target of threats

The FBI says authorities are aware that the federal judge in Hawaii who ruled against President Donald Trump's travel ban has received threatening messages.

FBI spokeswoman Michele Ernst said Thursday the agency is aware of reports of threatening messages against U.S. District Judge Derrick Watson and is prepared to help if necessary.

Watson blocked the federal government from enforcing its ban on new visas for people from six mostly Muslim countries and its suspension of the nation's refugee program. He issued his ruling last week hours before the travel ban was to go into effect.

Bathroom bill thrusts Montana into national LGBT debate

Montana's chief economic development warned Thursday of dire economic consequences if lawmakers entangle the state in a national debate over bathrooms and transgender people.

A conservative group seeking to preserve traditional family values is pushing the Legislature to let voters decide whether people should only use the bathroom or locker room that matches their biological sex.

Both sides sought to persuade lawmakers on the House Judiciary Committee, with one side arguing in favor of limits by asserting privacy and safety concern and opponents dismayed about being forced to redefine their gender identity.

Today's forecast: A shower

Mostly cloudy and warmer with a shower. High: 68; low: 39.

Up to the minute forecast

Longtime UW-Parkside wrestling coach dies

Jim Koch, 69, who coached the UW-Parkside wrestling program from 1970-2011, died Thursday at a St. Louis hospital.

For more, read later and Friday's News.

Friday vote set for health care bill

Abandoning negotiations, President Donald Trump today demanded a make-or-break vote on health care legislation in the House, threatening to leave "Obamacare" in place and move on to other issues if Friday's vote fails.

The risky move, part gamble and part threat, was presented to GOP lawmakers behind closed doors tonight after a long and intense day that saw a planned vote on the health care bill scrapped as the legislation remained short of votes amid cascading negotiations among conservative lawmakers, moderates and others.

Death toll rises in London attack

London police said a 75-year-old man injured in the attack on Westminster Bridge has died of his wounds.

In a statement late today, police said life support was withdrawn from the man and his family has been notified. The announcement brings to four the number of victims killed in the attack Wednesday in central London.

Wisconsin Democrat: People ‘terrified' of health care bill

Democratic State Rep. Jimmy Anderson, who was paralyzed after a car crash that killed his parents and younger brother, said Thursday that the Affordable Care Act was his only "glimmer of hope" when facing insurmountable medical bills after the 2010 accident.

Anderson was about to hit his insurance's lifetime limit when provisions from President Barack Obama's signature law kicked in and changed that. Anderson joined with health care advocates and others on Thursday in calling for rejection of the Republican plan to replace the current law.

Speaking from his wheelchair at a Capitol news conference, Anderson said the GOP proposal would have "real consequences for real people."

Health bill vote delayed in House in setback to Trump, Ryan

GOP House leaders delayed their planned vote today on a long-promised bill to repeal and replace "Obamacare" in a stinging setback for House Speaker Paul Ryan and President Donald Trump in their first major legislative test.

The decision came after Trump, who ran as a master dealmaker, failed to reach agreement with a bloc of rebellious conservatives. Moderate-leaning Republican lawmakers were also bailing on the legislation, leaving it short of votes.

Today's forecast: Evening shower

Rather cloudy with a shower in the evening. High: 44; low: 42.

Up to the minute forecast

United States wins World Baseball Classic

Marcus Stroman took a no-hitter into the seventh inning as the United States shut out Puerto Rico, 8-0, to capture the World Baseball Classic title at Dodger Stadium in Los Angeles on Wednesday night.

Kitchen fire reported in home

Firefighters were called at 6:20 p.m. for a report of a fire in a kitchen at 4414 17th Ave.

Poll shows Trump approval rating at 41 percent in Wisconsin

More people in Wisconsin disapprove than approve of the job Donald Trump has done as president, according to a statewide poll released Wednesday.

Only 41 percent of respondents approved of Trump's job performance since taking office in January, while 47 percent disapproved, the latest Marquette University Law School poll showed.

Trump joins Gov. Scott Walker as the only politicians asked about in the poll who are underwater, with more respondents disapproving of their job performance than approving. House Speaker Paul Ryan, Republican U.S. Sen. Ron Johnson and Democratic U.S. Sen. Tammy Baldwin all had better numbers.

4 dead in vehicle, knife attack at British Parliament

A knife-wielding man went on a deadly rampage in the heart of Britain's seat of power today, plowing a car into pedestrians on London's Westminster Bridge before stabbing a police officer to death inside the gates of Parliament.

Four people were killed, including the assailant, and about 20 others were injured in what Prime Minister Theresa May condemned as a "sick and depraved terrorist attack."

Panel votes to purge cases from state online court database

Wisconsin's courts director is considering removing criminal records of cases that ended in dismissal or acquittals from the state's popular online courts database within months, rather than decades, out of concern that people are abusing the information.

The move could result in thousands of cases disappearing overnight from the Wisconsin Circuit Court Access database, popularly known as CCAP, warned Wisconsin Freedom of Information Council President Bill Lueders. Hard copies of the records would still be available at local courthouses, but they would no longer be a mouse click away.

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