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St. Croix County's insurance company has paid $6,000 to a man erroneously identified by jail personnel as a registered sex offender. In March 2006, a jail log released to local media indicated that Jeremy P. Gruwell, 22, River Falls, was booked into the St. Croix County Jail. The reason for the booking was given as "sex offender registration." Sheriff Dennis Hillstead said Gruwell had been ordered by his probation agent to report to the jail to provide a DNA sample.
A group of town of Troy neighbors warn they'll go to court if necessary to prevent a Montessori preschool from operating in a house on their road. Main concerns are the increase in traffic on their sparsely traveled road, noise in the quiet neighborhood and a home septic system they believe is too small for a school. According to a decision filed April 29, the three members of the St. Croix County Board of Adjustment at the hearing voted to allow Heartland Montessori School to move its preschool program from Hudson to the house at 436 Red Brick Road.
Twelve new supervisors, nearly 40 percent of the St. Croix County Board, took office last week before new officers and committees were elected. There was no candidate on the spring ballot for the District 8 seat formerly held by Tom Dowd, and that position remains unfilled.
The St. Croix County Board is asking the state to pay its share for housing prisoners. People in custody of the Wisconsin Department of Corrections for allegedly violating the requirements of parole or probation are regularly held in county jails awaiting court action. Wisconsin law requires the DOC to pay counties $40 per person per day, if it has enough money to pay that. If not, payments to the counties are prorated. Jail administrators say it costs St.
Clarence "Buck" Malick, who has been chairman of the St. Croix County Board for the last six years, lost the post Tuesday to Roger Rebholz. Rebholz, of Hudson, who has been on the board for about seven years, received 20 votes.
Tests will be conducted in early May to determine the conductivity of the ground in anticipation of installing a geothermal heating and cooling system at the St. Croix County Government Center. Building Services Director Art Tobin said the test will involve installing one vertical heat exchanger to a depth of 200 feet. At a minimum, the test will be conducted for 36 hours. Bids for the work are due by noon Friday, April 11.
Reform of long-term care programs is expected to slash waiting lists for disabled adults, but some St. Croix County leaders wonder if it will dampen services provided to the county's elderly. As part of long-term care redesign, the county must establish an Aging and Disability Resource Center.
More taxes aren't the answer. Spending must be cut, say local lawmakers as the Legislature and Gov. Jim Doyle's administration tackle a biennial budget deficit projected at $652 million. Since last week, Wisconsin legislative leaders and Doyle's administration have started discussions on three disparate proposals to solve the shortfall. In early March the Department of Administration announced an expected biennium shortfall due to lower than estimated tax revenues.
A sluggish economy isn't helping St. Croix County's bottom line as 2007 sales tax receipts fell behind those received for 2006. Finance Director Michelle Pietrick waited until March, after sales tax collected by merchants in December arrived, to ask the County Board's Finance Committee to transfer $189,736 from the General Fund to the sales tax account.
The St. Croix County Board voted last week to set the 2009 pay for the county clerk, register of deeds and county treasurer at $61,000. Current pay for the three elected positions is $52,665. Last week's action results in a 16 percent raise for 2009, but the annual pay for the three positions will not be increased during the rest of their new terms. Starting this year, the three positions will be elected to four rather than two-year terms.