Saturday State News Briefs: PSC may reduce rate increasesWisconsin News
-- Wisconsin Public Service Corporation says it might reduce the rate increases it is proposing at a future date. They are based on economic forecasts from late last year and the picture seems to be improving.
Wisconsin Public Service Corporation says it might reduce the rate increases it is proposing at a future date. They are based on economic forecasts from late last year and the picture seems to be improving.
The utility says it had to move ahead on its proposal because the deadline to file for a rate increase was tomorrow. WPS wants a 9.2 percent increase in electric rates and a 3.7 percent increase for natural gas. The rates would go into effect next year. If the rate increases are approved the typical customers would see his or her electric bill go up by seven dollars a month, with an increase of two dollars, 50 cents a month for gas.
To some lottery players the heavy, wet snow which hit northeast Wisconsin was an interruption to the dreams of a $640 million dollar pay day. The Mega Millions lottery was offering the biggest jackpot in lottery history, but they couldn’t buy a ticket. Several stores in Oconto and Marinette counties lost satellite connections to the game yesterday morning. Snow collecting in their satellite dishes interrupted their signals for about two hours starting at 7:30 a.m. The manager of one store said she had customers waiting in line to buy 10 to 15 dollars worth of tickets and she couldn’t sell any until her son climbed onto the roof and cleared the snow off the dish.
When 13 month old Christopher Thomas was beaten to death in 2008 child welfare officials vowed to make things better. The numbers were saddening at the time. Thirty-six children in foster care had been maltreated in 2007. A report released yesterday suggests things are better. Only seven were reported to be maltreated last year. The Bureau of Milwaukee Child Welfare is still working to reach compliance on several of its goals. Although the goal is to reunify 71 percent of children with their parents or care givers within a year, that number is 68 percent. And, it’s a goal for 90 percent of child in the program experience no more than three placements. The bureau reported 82 percent of its wards meet that expectation.
Milwaukee authorities are looking for the man they believe brought a gun into a home and showed it to some children yesterday before one of those children accidentally shot an eight year old girl. The man suspected of bringing the run into the house is a felon and also the boyfriend of the mother of the injured child. After showing the gun to the children, police think the man left the gun in a place where a four year old boy picked it up and accidentally shot the eight year old. After the shooting, the man grabbed the gun and ran away. Felons can’t legally possess firearms.
Nuclear experts, scientists and others will meet at the University of Wisconsin-Madison next month to talk about the future of nuclear power. That’s an uncertain situation following the Japanese earthquake, tsunami and nuclear power plant disaster last year. The forum will start at the Wisconsin Institutes for Discovery, 330 North Orchard Street, April 12 at 7 p.m. Panelists will include experts in Japanese culture and environmental history, corporate responsibility and the media.
A convicted heroin dealer from Beloit has been sentenced to 20 years in prison. 38-year-old Maurice Vaughn was found guilty in January of distributing heroin. Witnesses testified in a three-day trial that Vaughn supplied 50-to-80 bags of heroin each day to a pair of associates, who delivered the drugs after Vaughn arranged the deals. The case prompted an investigation in 2010, due to a spike in the number of Beloit residents who died from drug overdoses. Vaughn had earlier served a 10-year federal sentence for drug trafficking. Federal Judge William Conley of Madison said a tougher sentence was justified this time, because Vaughn’s original term did not deter him from his continued drug dealing.