Saturday State News Briefs: DNR warning about algae blooms on lakesWisconsin News
-- The Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources is warning people enjoying the state’s lakes to be aware of water which looks like pea soup. Record high temperatures are causing toxic blue-green algae blooms on many of the state’s recreational waters.
The Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources is warning people enjoying the state’s lakes to be aware of water which looks like pea soup. Record high temperatures are causing toxic blue-green algae blooms on many of the state’s recreational waters.
Water which contains green, blue, white, red or brown scum could hurt those who come in contact with it, including pets. The most common symptoms of blue-green algae poisoning are rash, stomach pain and difficulty breathing.
Hedge fund manager Stark & Roth LLC has notified the state is plans to cut almost 60 jobs by the end of the year. The St. Francis-based investment firm says it is curtailing its multi-strategy hedge fund business. The terminations are expected to hit portfolio managers, lawyers, accountants and a managing director. They will come in four stages, starting July 17th, or a few days after that date. The company notified clients in a letter mailed last month it is closing the multi-strategy funds because the assets being managed have fallen off. Stark says it plans to continue to manage single-strategy funds.
Starting next week, Amtrak is raising its fares on the Hiawatha line. Traveling between downtown Chicago and Milwaukee will go up by more than three percent. A one-way ticket price increases from $23 to $24 dollars. A monthly pass goes from $374 to $390 dollars. An Amtrak spokesman says the train service is just covering rising expenses with the change. The fares cover about two-thirds of the line’s operating costs, while the states of Wisconsin and Illinois cover the rest. The Hiawatha is Amtrak’s busiest Midwest route.
A Wisconsin state senator says yesterday’s waiver of the No Child Left Behind Act means this state can more effectively improve its public schools. Wisconsin’s waiver was approved Friday by the U.S. Department of Education. A total of 26 states have received the waivers so far. Wisconsin Senate Education Committee Chairman Luther Olsen (R-Berlin) says the state can now address the achievement gap in public schools, using plans focused on the needs of students here. The waiver also allows for teachers to have their performance evaluated. Members of both parties admit the federal law is flawed and work is being done in Washington to re-write it. Olsen says he hopes the states can continue to take their own approaches to making the system work better.
Two years after Wisconsin put its workplace smoking ban in force, dire predictions of damage to the hospitality industry haven’t come true. State tax collection numbers show restaurant and tavern sales were up one percent in the first year and two percent last year. A spokesman for the Wisconsin Restaurant Association says the smoking ban hasn’t helped the industry, but it doesn’t appear to have hurt sales. Setting the numbers for bars and taverns aside, their sales are off by four percent. But, that just reportedly continues a trend which was in place before the ban was enacted.