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Local leaders call for crisis response expansion | Wausau News
The Weekly Wausonian for Oct. 13, 2022
Area leaders are calling for the expansion of the Crisis Assessment Response Team.
Right now, CART is a four-person team with one Wausau Police officer, one Marathon County deputy and two North Central Health Care crisis professionals who respond to people with mental health issues. The idea is that they respond instead of regular police officers, hopefully helping them instead of taking them to jail.
The problem is that CART operates on “banker’s hours” Monday through Friday during the day. That leaves no availability on the weekend.
Chief Deputy Chad Billeb, Mayor Katie Rosenberg, Deputy Chief Matt Barnes and Wausau Police Task Force Chair John Robinson called on the county’s social service committee to expand CART so that those times can be covered.
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What else in Wausau?
Historic pause: City leaders punted on designating John Marshall Elementary School a historic landmark until next month. Local historians and most residents want to see the school preserved, but school district leaders worry it could hamper their plans to consolidate schools amidst concerns about enrollment and staffing shortages.
City budget challenge No. 1: City leaders got their first crack at the city budget this week. The first challenge: Funding a replacement of the city’s vehicles. City vehicles are too old, but replacing them will cost $2.6 million more than the city has available for replacement. More meetings will be held on the budget next week.
School restructuring: Wausau School leaders are about to start community outreach as it looks to restructure its schools (read: consolidate). Leaders say there is a disparity in resources and offerings at various schools. That’s exasperated by teacher and staffing shortages. There’s so no specific plan yet — that will be developed after hearing from the community.
Around the metro
Gun fraud: A Schofield man has been sentenced to two years in federal prison for buying firearms for another person. Kyle Ritchie bought four guns for a convicted drug dealer, known as a straw purchase. According to a press release, Ritchie bought four guns at a federally licensed dealer in Wausau and said they were for him, but delivered them to someone else, which is illegal under federal law.
Cold case wrapup: Portage County officials on Tuesday declared the 1984 death of UWSP student Janet Raasch an accident. Police had been investigating the case as an unsolved homicide since she was discovered in the woods. But a new investigator looking at the case says all the evidence points to an accidental death, which the county’s medical examiner and a judge agreed recently. Metro Wire and WAOW both have longer stories on the case. (I wrote extensively about the cold case when I worked for the Stevens Point Journal.)
Extension: Interim administrator Duane Gau, brought in to fill in after former administrator Richard Downey left, will stay on longer, WSAU reports. Gau will now stay on through Jan. 1, according to WSAU. The Wausonian reported extensively on the situation in Kronenwetter, starting with Part I.
Correction: In the edition two weeks ago, The Wausonian stated the wrong partner for the area’s first rooftop bar. It’s Tine and Cellar. No cocktails for The Wausonian for awhile, so as to atone for the error.
New owners for Sweets on Third: It appears that Sweets on Third has new owners, and new hours to go along with it, according to a post by downtown institution Janke Book Store. The new owners Devin and Arthur will now keep the place open from 7 am to 7 pm (and until 4 pm on Sunday), which should delight anyone looking for an early morning place, or one that is open a little later.
Wednesday, Oct. 19: Lamplight Sessions continues to rock it with a very diverse set of musical acts that one doesn’t ordinarily see around this area. This Wednesday is no exception with The Way Down Wanderers about to take the cozy Lamplight stage. The Wanderers might appear to be a typical bluegrass band, but they seem to be able to combine jazz and pop sensibilities along the grass style. Show starts at 7 pm, $35. Find more at the event page.
Saturday, Oct. 15: Stevens Point has something we don’t — a sculpture park. Part of the Green Circle Trail, the park will be lit up for this special event, called Lit 2, starting at 7 pm Saturday. Besides the lit sculptures, there will be interpretive dance, music with DJ Frank Slowinski and the debut of the film “Piles.” What can I say, it’s a very Stevens Point event. Free. Check out the event page for more details.
Thurs.-Sat, Oct. 13-15: I’ve been jealous of other cities that have these walking tours with lighted exhibits — but now there is one here! Monk Gardens will feature the first-ever Blossom of Light event at its beautiful garden area on the north side of town. The ten acres of the park will be filled with light sculptures and lit exhibits. It’s bound to be pretty darned cool! It runs Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays through Oct. 29, so you’ll have plenty of chances to check this out. But if you’re like me, you’ll forget until the last minute so go check it out soon! Individuals $10, $40 for a family up to six (for more than six, each additional person pays the $10 rate). See the event page for more details.
Looking for kids/family events? Check out the full listing from The Wausonian’s partner Wausau Mama, who puts together a weekly listing of children/family activities.
Football: Wausau West remains tied for first place in the Valley Association Football Conference with Marshfield and Wisconsin Rapids. The Warriors (5-1) defeated Hortonville 7-0 Friday to hold on to first place. West will host D.C. Everest (4-2) for the final game of the conference season.
Boys Soccer: D.C. Everest finished the conference season undefeated, going 9-0 after shutting out second-place Wisconsin Rapids 2-0. Wausau West finished tied for fourth and Wausau East finished sixth. Everest will take on Eau Claire North at home 7 pm Tuesday to kick off the playoff season.
Volleyball: D.C. Everest defeated Wisconsin Rapids in straight sets to retain second place in the Wisconsin Valley Conference. Everest is likely to retain that spot unless SPASH wins today (Thursday), in which case SPASH would tie with Everest.
Girls Tennis: Wausau West’s Mia Bailey is seeded 13th in the singles bracket at the state tournament. Alexis Kloth of West is also slated to play in the tournament. The tournament begins today (Thursday) and runs through the weekend.
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