Wisconsin roundup: Tuesday voter turnout second-highest in nonpartisan election since 2000; more state news stories
The Wisconsin Elections Commission says 26.6 percent of eligible voters cast their ballots Tuesday.
The only statewide ballot decision was for a seat on the Wisconsin Supreme Court. The unofficial count showed Judge Brian Hagedorn leading Judge Lisa Neubauer by about 6,000 — close enough for a possible recount. Neubauer has not said whether she will call for a recount, but she also hasn't conceded to her conservative opponent. Tuesday's turnout was the second-highest since 2000 for a nonpartisan election.
Coalition of liberal groups asks Supreme Court to decide on lame-duck session
A coalition of several liberal groups is asking the Wisconsin Supreme Court to decide whether last December's lame-duck session of the Legislature was legal.
Republicans passed bills which weakened the authority of Democratic Gov. Tony Evers and Attorney General Josh Kaul. A Dane County judge agreed the session was illegal and blocked the new laws, but the 3rd District Court of Appeals stayed that ruling a few days later. The coalition says the case presents important questions about state law.
Congressman Kind calls on USDA to protect Wis. farmers’ access to Mexico
U.S. Rep. Ron Kind is calling on U.S. Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue to protect Wisconsin farmers' access to the Mexican trade market.
Kind fears the trade partnership could be in jeopardy if President Trump fulfills his threat to close the southern border. Mexico is the largest export market for Wisconsin dairy farmers with more than 69-million dollars in products exported in 2018. Kind said in a statement, "the success of our rural economy should never be dependent on the whims of the president and the consequences of his tweets." Wisconsin lost 700 dairy farms last year.
UW-Eau Claire student’s death under investigation
The University of Wisconsin Eau Claire is mourning the death of a student from Coon Valley.
The school said that Lauren Berg died Monday of an unknown medical condition. Testing found that Berg did not die of meningitis. Berg was a graduate of Westby High School and a freshman at UW-Eau Claire majoring in human resource management. Grief counseling is available at Larson Hall. The cause of her death is still under investigation.
Teen tells cops he was kidnapped 7 years ago in Wis.
Police in southwestern Ohio are checking out the story given by a 14-year-old boy Wednesday morning.
Authorities are trying to determine if he is Timmothy Pitzen, who was last seen at a Wisconsin Dells waterpark in 2011 at the age of 6. His mother had just committed suicide at a Dells resort. The teenager tells police in Sharonville, Ohio he escaped from two kidnappers who were driving an SUV with Wisconsin plates. Police say he could be the missing boy — or, this "could be a hoax."
Superior’s Husky refinery to be rebuilt
Husky Energy says it will rebuild its Superior refinery.
An explosion at that location injured 36 people and forced the evacuation of most of the northwestern Wisconsin city last April. Husky says it has explored using less-toxic chemicals at the plant, but its scientists say hydrogen fluoride is fundamental to making gasoline. The refinery should come back online sometime late next year. The total cost of the project is estimated at $400 million.