‘Click It or Ticket’ campaign continues to end of month

Stoughton police will “stringently enforce” Wisconsin seatbelt laws as part of a national campaign through May 31, according to a press release from the Stoughton Police Department.

“We’re not trying to write more tickets,” said Stoughton Police Chief Greg Leck. “We’re striving to get people to buckle up every time they drive or ride in a vehicle.”

The campaign began May 18, and targets the roughly 15 percent of users in the state who do not use seat belts regularly, according to the release. Police said more than half of traffic fatalities in Wisconsin last year occurred when drivers or passengers were not wearing seatbelts.

“Whether it’s day or night, or a short trip or a long journey, drivers and passengers must buckle up,” Leck said. “’Click It or Ticket’ is more than a slogan to our officers. It’s a life-saving effort.”


Council authorizes $2.7M in borrowing

The Common Council authorized the city to borrow $2.72 million in 10-year notes at its May 12 meeting.

The borrowing is done annually to cover expenses for the city’s big improvement projects, including buildings and streets, stormwater utility projects, and water and sewer projects.

About $1.5 million of the borrowing is for building and street improvements and will be repaid by tax dollars through the city’s general fund.

Another $300,000 is for the stormwater utility and will be repaid through the utility, while $850,000 of borrowing is for the water and sewer utility.

The city’s financial consultant, Joe Murray, of Springsted Inc., said the interest rate on the 10-year notes was 1.8 percent, but that would likely change by the time Springsted actually sells the notes on June 9.


KPW Developer gets letters of credit

Kettle Park West appears to be back on track after it ran into trouble last month.

After its developer acknowledged it was having trouble securing letters of credit, the Common Council signaled it would not approve a revised development agreement.

But Forward Development Group project manager Dennis Steinkraus told the Hub last Friday his company was successful in securing two letters of credit required in the agreement. FDG still must provide the city with evidence that it has sold four lots in the 35-acre commercial center by June 30 in order to meet its contract obligations.


City ‘phasing out’ outdoor fireboxes

The city is phasing out the use of outdoor fire furnaces.

Under a new ordinance the Common Council adopted last week, city residents will not be allowed to install new outdoor furnaces, which burn wood to heat water for home heating. Any existing furnaces will be grandfathered. 

Planning director Rodney Scheel told the council he believes there are only a few of the furnaces being used in the city. Officials want to phase out the furnaces because the smoke they generate is considered a nuisance and a health hazard.

The council at its May 12 meeting debated the merits of the new ordinance, which permits existing furnaces to remain in place, provided they meet a few requirements:  

• The furnace must have been installed before the date the council adopted the new ordinance


Dunn crash puts woman in hospital

At least two people were taken to the hospital following a crash Tuesday (May 19) night in the Town of Dunn, the Dane County Sheriff’s Office said.

According to the release, Dawn D. Wills a 44-year-old Madison woman was taken by Med-Flight to UW Hospital after sustaining “significant injuries” in the crash. The sheriff’s office said the injuries were sustained after a rear-end collision with Sandra J. Schwab, 57, of Madison, just before 7 p.m. near the intersection of CTH B and Highway 51.

Schwab had been waiting to take a left turn.


Library reaches fundraising goal

The Stoughton Public Library has reached its fundraising goal for second-floor renovations, and now it’s time to celebrate.

A recent $30,000 grant from the Madison Community Foundation helped the library reach the minimum fundraising goal of $250,000, said director Richard MacDonald.

“The grant will allow us to not only reach our goal, but ensures that we will be able to purchase quality materials such as shelving, carpet, and furniture that will last for decades,” MacDonald said. “(It) will also enable the library to meet those unexpected expenses which are invariably a part of every project of this nature.”


Incident at bar puts one in hospital Wednesday

An early morning shooting in Stoughton resulted in a 22-year-old female being Med-Flighted to a Madison hospital early last Wednesday, according to the Stoughton Police Department.

Stoughton Police Chief Gregory Leck told the Courier-Hub the department is “pretty confident” that the shooting was accidental.

According to a press release from the Stoughton Police Department, officers responded to a report of a gunshot wound at 111 Chalet Drive, site of Reverend Jim’s Roadhouse 2 sports bar, at 12:33 a.m. on May 13, and found the victim had been shot in both arms.


Former Stoughtonite’s cancer success highlights health insurance changes

Photo courtesy UW Health Public Affairs. UW patient Gayle Zinda, whose lung cancer was found via a CT scan that is now recommended for former smokers. She had surgery nine years ago and is cancer free. The doctor is Dr. Nizar Jarjour, who is head of pulmonary medicine at University of Wisconsin Hospital and Clinics and advised Mrs. Zinda on her surgery options.

Gayle Zinda is that rarest of birds – a long-term lung-cancer survivor.

But lung-cancer specialists at the UW Carbone Cancer Center are hopeful that with both private insurance and Medicare now paying for CT scans for many former and current smokers, they will be having more success stories like Zinda’s.

She was diagnosed via a happy coincidence – a CT scan after unrelated surgery back in 2006 showed a suspicious spot. After having lung cancer confirmed, she had the lower lobe of her left lung removed in a surgery at University of Wisconsin Hospital. 

“Gayle was very lucky to have discovered her cancer so early,’’ said pulmonologist, Dr. Nizar Jarjour, a professor of medicine at the University of Wisconsin School of Medicine and Public Health. “It’s gratifying to see how well she’s done.”


Officials hope to extend River Trail

The Stoughton Parks and Recreation Department has gotten approval to extend the Yahara River Trail west from Amundson Park across Skaalen Home property to connect with a path that Stoughton Hospital plans to build on its land.

The approval to cross Skaalen property and connect to the hospital’s future path is one more piece in a long-term goal to make a river trail loop that begins and ends at Amundson Park.

Parks and recreation department director Tom Lynch said he’s not sure when the hospital plans to build its path – he thinks it will happen this year – and he’s not sure when the city will have the funds to extend the Yahara River Trail.


Stoughton multifamily project forwarded

Map courtesy Sieger Architects The townhome-style building would be built on the corner of Lincoln Avenue and Hwy. B on the city’s north edge. The building is set back from the corner to allow site lines along Hwy. B. Residents would enter and exit the complex along Lincoln Avenue.

The Common Council will consider a permit for a seven-unit multifamily housing development after the Plan Commission approved a site plan for the building Monday night. 

Developers for Spanrie Properties hope to build a multi-level, townhome-style building on the northeast corner of Lincoln Avenue at Hwy. B. The building would be built across Lincoln Avenue from a 40-unit senior living facility approved earlier this year.

The commission also recommended the council approve a conditional use permit. The votes followed a public hearing with no comments.


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