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St. Croix County, its insurer and a company that provided medical services to inmates have agreed to pay $1 million to the family of a 28-year-old man who died in jail. An out-of-court settlement was reached with the family of Brandon Lee Hessler, New Richmond, who died March 18, 2007, three days after being booked into the county jail in Hudson. U.S. District Court Judge Barbara Crabb approved the agreement last Thursday. The settlement calls for St. Croix County and Wisconsin Municipal Mutual Insurance Company to pay $812,500 and for Health Professionals Ltd.
Despite objections that one district is too large and "illogically shaped" and over one supervisor's adamant objections, the St. Croix County Board adopted a new redistricting plan Tuesday. The plan implements a citizen vote to cut the number of County Board members from 31 to 19.
Cheryl Slind, who has been St.
In a sense, Ron Lockwood, along with his counterparts in other counties, worked himself out of a job. Lockwood's career stretched across a timeline of change in the way Wisconsin and its counties provide services to people with disabilities and their families. Now as part of a statewide effort, St. Croix, Pierce and Dunn counties are transferring the responsibility for long-term support to private agencies. The state promises the new system will eventually eliminate waiting lists for services for adults with chronic illnesses or disabling conditions.
Wisconsin voters will go to the polls April 7 to select a new superintendent of public instruction and a Supreme Court justice. Rose Fernandez, Mukwonago, and Tony Evers, Madison, are candidates for a four-year term to replace Elizabeth Burmaster, who's headed the Department of Public Instruction since 2001. Jefferson County Judge Randy Koschnick, Oconomowoc, is challenging 32-year incumbent Shirley Abrahamson, Madison, for a seat on the Wisconsin Supreme Court. The DPI provides direction and technical assistance for public elementary and secondary education.
St. Croix County residents who are either uninsured or who have high out-of-pocket payments can soon get a discount card for prescription drugs. People who use the cards, which will be free to all county residents, can save an average of 22 percent of the retail cost of prescription drugs, claims the National Association of Counties. NaCo has contracted with Caremark PCS Health, a pharmacy benefit management service, to offer the cards to member counties. "I know of no other program like this," said St.
Raising private-pay rates at St. Croix's county-owned nursing home too much could prompt patients to choose other homes or could eat up patients' finances quicker, forcing them to turn to Medicaid. Taking into account those considerations, the Health and Human Services Board has voted to increase the private-pay charge by $5 a day and to evaluate the rate annually. The county expected to absorb $58 per day of the cost of each private-pay patient this year.
St. Croix County Board members learned a bitter truth Monday: When the state economizes, local governments often pick up the bill. For 15 straight years, St. Croix farms, small businesses and residents have used Clean Sweep collections to dispose of unused hazardous chemicals. But in his budget proposal Gov. Jim Doyle cuts about $1 million in grants for the program. When it developed its 2009 budget, the county set aside $50,000 for two Clean Sweeps, one in spring and one in the fall, said Planning and Zoning Director Dave Fodroczi.