Wausau News: Relief for PFAS at last
The Weekly Wausonian for March 10, 2022
One month after the PFAS crisis was first announced, city leaders finally passed a plan to provide clean water to people in the short term.
The city council Tuesday approved a plan to spend $150,000 in American Rescue Plan Act dollars to buy a mix of bottled water and filters for residents. City staff will determine the best products and purchase them.
The city announced last month that all six of the city’s wells have levels of PFAS higher than the new recommendations of 20 parts per trillion. PFAS are often called ‘forever chemicals’ because they don’t break down in the environment. That makes them good for use in a number of product, but harmful to human health for that same reason.
While the city has been working on long-term solutions, residents have been disappointed with the all the talking and lack of action on short term solutions, council members said Tuesday. Council President Becky McElhaney says she’s never heard from more residents on an issue and even heard restaurant servers joke about the “poisoned water.”
New here? Subscribe for free to get the weekly roundup every Thursday morning; or, sign up for a paid subscription to read all The Wausonian’s content.
What else in Wausau news?
Two city projects will receive $3.25 million from a state program. That includes $1.5 million for a Community Partners Campus that will bring a number of non-profits under one roof. And it includes $1.75 million for an affordable housing project in the former Westside Battery building.
City leaders pumped the brakes on the third Riverlife Project. T. Wall Enterprises was to build the commercial/residential building this year but as of this month haven’t started work. City leaders blame the company, but T. Wall in an email to The Wausonian counters that city leaders made it difficult to get access to the site. That’s been much different from any other community they’ve worked with. The Wausonian will publish a full breakdown on Friday.
The City Parks Committee approved the next phase of mountain biking at Sylvan Hill. The plan will add a new skills area and short dirt jump circuit for skills development. It will cost $16,750 and will be paid for with money raised by the Central Wisconsin Off-Road Cycling Coalition.
City Council Member Deb Ryan in a press release this week accused Mayor Katie Rosenberg of recruiting candidates to run against her. Rosenberg in response to The Wausonian said the charges were “political bullpucky” and that she hadn’t been recruiting anyone for the council races.
Around the metro
The Marathon County Jail got a positive report from state auditors, except for one thing: Hire more people. Currently the jail is short eight people, and Jail Administrator Sandra LaDu says the employment crisis has hit them the same as everyone. In better news, the jail population is now under capacity; in year’s past its population had exceeded its limits, forcing the county to house prisoners in other county’s jails.
The SAFER Fire District has narrowed a list of candidates for fire chief down to ten, according to reporter Evan Pretzer writing for City Pages. The former chief Matt Savage resigned last month but SAFER officials refuse to give any explanation. Two of the ten candidates are internal, Pretzer reports.
A new yoga studio is slated to open in the former Croi Croga space near Red Eye Brewing Company. Called SALT, the business advertises itself as a movement and meditation studio. Check out their Facebook page and find them on the Mindbody app. SALT is owned by Clarissa Whalen, and former Community Soul yoga teacher Angela Wenniger is teaching there.
Fri.-Sun. March 11-13: The Central Wisconsin Children’s Theatre will simply wow and surprise you with its production quality. And The Musical Adventures of Flat Stanley is sure to be no exception. It’s the story of Stanley, a normal boy until one day his bulletin board falls on top of him, transforming him into a flat version of himself. 7 pm Friday and Saturday, 2 pm Saturday and Sunday. Check out their website for ticket details.
Friday, March 11: Get your bluegrass shoes on (is that a thing?) because Joseph Huber is coming to Whitewater Music Hall and that’s kind of a big deal. Huber has toured throughout the US and even into Europe and he’s got a catchy tunes that are easy to tap your foot to. I dare you not to dance, especially with a couple of Whitewater Music Hall’s crafted beers in you. 8 pm. $15. Also, if you’d like to learn Bollywood dancing, Women’s United is hosting an evening of Bollywood dancing and appetizers. Also $15, starts at 5:30 pm.
Friday, March 11: If you’ve always wanted to see a UFC fight in person but have never gotten the chance, check out PURE FC 22 Friday at the Holiday Inn in Stevens Point. Plenty of fighters on the card, including some local fighters from Wausau and Stevens Point. It’s not every day you get to see something like this nearby so be sure to check it out! 7 pm. Ticket prices vary. See the Facebook page for event details.
It only took Samantha Federici a little over six minutes to give the Central Wisconsin Storm its first goal over Onalaska Coop Saturday, securing the state championship. It was the first of a hat trick for the Federici and of five total goals as the Storm shut out Onalaska. Federici scored three goals, including one short-handed, and Gabbi Heuser scored two. Chloe Lemke made 16 saves in the net to preserve the shutout win for the Storm. The Storm last won the state tournament in 2017, with a win over the Green Bay Ice Bears in overtime.
Wausau area boys basketball teams have been eliminate from the state tournament last week. Wausau West lost to Superior 67-53 on Friday, and D.C. Everest lost to Marshfield 80-64.
I’ve been really curious about the culture wars going on in America, and thought I knew a lot. Then I checked out Jon Ronson’s Things Fell Apart and realized this all started much earlier than I realized. Ronson has written the excellent So You’ve Been Publicly Shamed and Men Who Stare at Goats, and this lives up to his excellent and insightful body of work. Check out Things Fell Apart on Audible or wherever you get your podcasts.
Thanks for reading The Wausonian! If you’re not already subscribed, you can sign up for free to get this roundup sent to you every Friday. Or, consider a paid subscription to get all The Wausonian’s content.
As always, please email tips or corrections to firstname.lastname@example.org.