Jason Schulte is a reporter for the New Richmond News since February 2015. Prior to that he spent eight years at the Pierce County Herald in Ellsworth. His duties with the News will include covering news out of Hammond and Roberts along with action from St. Croix County court system. He lives in Roberts.
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The Pierce County Courthouse and Office Building will be undergoing a few changes this summer. First on the list are new windows for the Courthouse, Annex and the Office Building. Construction will start May 2 with a completed date of late June. J&B Windows and Doors out of Becker, Minn., were awarded the bid for $363,340, which came under budget, Building Committee chairman Dan Reis told his fellow Supervisors Tuesday morning. Reis also discussed three more projects that are scheduled to begin this summer. Tuck pointing for the Courthouse.
PRESCOTT - Prescott Police Chief Mike Bondarenko was a happy man last week. Statistics released by the Office of Justice Assistance show crime in Prescott was down in 2010 compared to 2009 in nearly every statistical area - violent crime, property theft, adults and juvenile arrests. Prescott's figures were even above state and national averages. Bondarenko believes the decline is helped by the Department's initiation of its juvenile crime reduction project, in which an officer is a liaison with high school students on a daily basis.
PLUM CITY--Mark Luebker graduated from Plum City High School in 1986 and held multiple positions since 1991 within the Plum City School District--elementary teacher, athletic director, principal and superintendent. Starting next fall, Luebker will be calling a different district home for the first time, as he's accepted the position as District Administrator for the Osceola School District.
All parties involved in Monday's sentencing hearing agreed Taylor Langer would be going to prison for pleading guilty to sexual assault of a child. The question was, how long? Pierce County Circuit Court Judge Joseph Boles provided the answer--six years. After release, the 22-year-old will spend the next four years on extended supervision. "Confinement is needed to protect the public and because it's his second offense," Boles said.
As one facet of his Pierce County Sheriff's Department career is likely ending, another one has opened up for Herman Kreig. The K-9 officer for the last seven years, Kreig was promoted to Patrol Sergeant and started his new position Saturday. "I felt this was the next step in my law enforcement career," Kreig said, succeeding Tom Gunderson, who moved to investigations.
The Pierce County Veterans Court is now one step away from becoming reality after the Finance and Personnel Committee approved its creation Monday. Veteran Services Officer David Till explained to the committee he felt the establishment of the court would be a win-win for both veterans and the county. "Many of the court's requirements will require veterans to utilize programs already in place by the Department of Veterans Affairs as well as Pierce County," he said. If the veterans follow the requirements and graduate, they may avoid jail time, saving the county money.
PRESCOTT--The Prescott Police Department announced Monday a Prescott woman has been cited for 17 violations in relation to a dog bite last month. Melissa Christofferson, 34, 372 Elm St. S., received the following citations: three for animals at large, five for failure to license dog, five for unlawful keeping of a pit bull and/or dangerous dog and four for failure to prove rabies vaccination. She is scheduled to make her initial court appearance in Prescott Municipal Court at 5 p.m.
The proposed co-op between Plum City and Elmwood for girls basketball will not be happening for the 2011-12 school year. The Elmwood School Board voted 6-0 Tuesday night not to co-op, while at the same time, Plum City's board voted 4-0 to co-op. Elmwood Superintendent Paul Blanford said the majority of the 40 people who spoke weren't ready to give up the Raider name. "The general feel was they still wanted to compete as Elmwood alone," he said.
PRESCOTT--Kris Sampson calls the Prescott Foundation "a big secret." "I think most of the city's residents know the name, but they don't know the good we do," she says. "The average resident goes to work in the Cities and comes home. I don't think they know us." Sampson is one who knows all about the foundation, as she was recently named its president. She explained, about 20 years ago, Prescott had two foundations--focusing on education and community.
The Pierce County Board of Supervisors will stay at 17 members for the foreseeable future. The board approved the request Tuesday. The request came following completion of the U.S. census, done every 10 years, in which county governments are required to redistrict to reflect population shifts which have occurred over time. Pierce County had 36,804 residents in the 2000 census. According to the State Legislature Redistricting website, the county grew over the last 10 years to 41,019 residents.