Meg Heaton has been a reporter with the Hudson Star Observer since 1990. She has a bachelor’s degree in anthropology and Native American Studies from the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire.
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I was wrong. I thought that The Phipps production of "Driving Miss Daisy" might not hold up to the memory I had of the Academy awarding-winning movie with the late Jessica Tandy and Morgan Freeman. That movie was great. This play was better. "Better" might not be the right word, but it seemed that the experience of this very good story was only made more touching by the intimate nature of a stage production and the outstanding performances of Mary Kay Fortier-Spaulding, Eric Wood and Mark Koski.
The school lunch program in the Hudson School District now includes the services of a registered dietician. Last week the Board of Education approved a one-year contract for the part-time services of Stephanie Campbell, a member of the dietary staff at Hudson Hospital. Campbell, who was on the job this week, will spend 10-12 hours a week working in the district's child nutrition office. Her first project was to simplify and streamline the nutrition information needed by the health staff at all seven of the district's schools.
Hilary Harris Lundberg knew before she ever left Hudson High School that she wanted to be a police officer. Mission accomplished. Today, the 1993 HHS graduate is a patrol officer with the Austin Police Department in Texas. Her husband, Shane, is a sheriff's deputy and the couple have a son, Gabriel, 18 months old. On a recent trip home, Lundberg talked about her career choice and the impact her son has had on her life. Lundberg grew up in something of a legal atmosphere. Her father, Chuck Harris, is a Hudson attorney.
The city of Hudson Police and Fire Commission will likely consider whether to take disciplinary action against a Hudson Police Department sergeant sometime in the next few weeks. Sgt. Bob Oehmke has been on paid administrative leave since March 29 while an investigation was conducted into an undisclosed complaint by a civilian against the 15-year veteran. To date the city has paid Oehmke a little over $26,500. The complaint was initially investigated by Oehmke's superiors in the department.
Members of the Board of Education got their first look at what a new elementary school would cost them and their fellow taxpayers at the regular board meeting held just before the annual meeting Monday night. The report came from the board's finance committee, which examined the cost to taxpayers at each of the two proposed locations, Crosby Drive and Coulee Trail (formerly County FF).
For the second consecutive year, a group of Hudson-area teens traveled to a community in rural Mississippi to help build a Habitat for Humanity home. The group of 13 was made up of boys and girls, all Community Action youth volunteers who worked throughout the year to earn the money to fund the trip. A group about half the size made their first trip to the area last year. Their experience prompted several of them to return again this year and to bring along others. The trip was led by Community Action staff members and Americorps workers Jason Briggs and Jenna Evenson.
With just one dissenting vote, Hudson School District residents voted to approve a school tax levy of $24,273,818 to help fund the 2006-07 school budget at their annual meeting Monday night. The levy, while up 2.16 percent over last year, translates into a mill rate of $7.23 per $1,000 of property valuation, a decrease from last year's mill rate of $7.77 per $1,000.
It's back to square one for the Hudson Police and Fire Commission in their search for a new Hudson police chief. Chairman of the commission Tom O'Connell said the process will likely take until late November to complete. James Coan of Whitewater was the commission's first choice to replace retired Chief Dick Trende. But Coan abruptly resigned Aug. 31 after just three weeks on the job citing family considerations as the reason. The commission met last Thursday to appoint HPD Lt. Paul Larson as the interim chief, a position he held during the initial search earlier this year.
You'd think with what it costs to live in Hudson these days, the price of a year at college wouldn't be such a big deal. But then it's been almost 30 years since I paid tuition to anywhere so the shock should have been expected. With only one short year left before we hopefully send our two off to higher education venues, college has been on our minds a lot this summer. By "our," I mean Kevin's and mine. The kids don't seem too concerned, at least not Cory. He seems to have his mind made up.
The Board of Education believes the Hudson School District needs a new elementary school, but the question is where. Before putting the question to voters in a referendum, the board wants input from district residents about two possible locations for the new school, which would also include room for an early childhood program. A schedule of informational meetings accompanies this story.