Solar Energy coming to Jefferson County

March 16th, 2021

By Austin Dowdall

Tuesday night county board supervisors met at the Jefferson County Courthouse, to discuss the possibility of solar power. The project being called Crawfish River Solar is set to be constructed a mile West of the city of Jefferson. It will be located just South of Highway 18, and will East of County Road G.

The facility will generate 75-megawatts for the county of Jefferson. This facility will be owned and operated by Alliant Energy as soon as construction is completed. The facility will be on 500 acres that was offered by the farmers.

This project will be right next to the Badger State Solar project, and are even using sights that were being considered for Badger State. This is a benefit for Crawfish River, now they don’t have to complete a technical analysis. They will have to provide their own local and state permits.

The solar panels for this project will not be taller than corn stocks, they will rotate with the sun to optimize sunlight. The panels will start and finish each day at a 30 degree incline in order to get the sun rise and the sun set. It will lay flare during the sun’s peak in order to absorb the most sunlight.

This project will prove to be lucrative for everyone, The city of Jefferson is expected to receive 125,000 in shared revenues, While the county of Jefferson is expected to receive 175,000. The farmers will also get paid for the use of their land, and this will help preserve land.

Destroyed Mailbox

Jefferson County citizen John Ebbot sent a complaint about a plow destroying his mailbox this Winter. The county replayed that they are not liable for the destruction of the mailbox.

Ebbot took the stand during the public comment section, he was not very pleased about having to pay for the replacement of the mailbox. “I don’t know why this has to happen, The drivers should know how to operate their machines, why do I pay taxes for a driver who whips out my mailbox.” Ebbot was hoping to be reimbursed by the county because he had to replace his mailbox.

The county indicated that a plow blade did not destroy but the snow did, and the highway committee also claimed that the post was not sturdy enough. It was indicated that the county is not at fault and his mailbox required repair prior to the snowstorm. 

Also on Tuesday

  • Dwayne Morris head of the Alcohol safety board discussed how the program has been successful since it has been started. Since December 2020 119 people have gone through the program and 85 percent have graduated. Supervisors were hoping to start the program at fewer DUI, but Morris explained there isn’t enough reward for it.
  • Supervisors discussed the idea of renovating the capital, Jim Braugler was against the cost that would come with it, “I’m in favor of the renovations, but I’m against the cost.” The vote for the renovations passed at 26-1 on Tuesday.

Smoking being Challenged at Whitewater Parks

February 23rd, 2021

By Austin Dowdall/The Capstone

Matt Shulgit proposes to make Whitewater the fourth city in Wisconsin to have a city wide ban on smoking/vaping at any Whitewater park. Shuligit argues that this proposal will keep the public healthy. No smoking/vaping in public parks would help prevent autoimmune diseases and will stop second hand smoking.

This was an unpopular bill amongst the common council on Tuesday. “I agree with your assessment, that we should not be smoking, vaping or chewing tobacco either, and all three are unenforceable. I always vote against any ordinances that I find uniforcible,” Councilman Jim Allen told the council.

The council is for doing something to help with the safety of the Whitewater community. They think this ordinance should be broken down to be more specific. They also show interest in putting signs up to try to get citizens not to smoke at the public parks.

Councilwoman Carol McCormick said that parks and recreation was onboard for this bill 2 years ago, but she also agreed that it is hard to enforce this rule. McCormick proposed to focus more on a specific area, like around children’s play areas. She argues it will help prevent second hand smoke with children.

No smoking near playgrounds might be the future in Whitewater, “The city of Appleton has a prohibition on smoking within 20 feet of playgrounds, which seems like a sensible approach,” said Councilman Patrick Singer to the council. 

Scooter report

Representatives from Bird Ride inc. came to the city of Whitewater to propose the idea of a minimum of 100 of their stand-up scooters for the public use.

These scooters are in many other cities that have universities according to their website. Bird’s scooters are even as close as Milwaukee. 

These scooters are not to be used on sidewalks, they should be used on bike lanes on the road, and must follow all traffic laws. 

To use these scooters, you must download the Bird app. When you are in the app it shows you where the closest scooter is available, then you scan the QR code with your app, and you are ready to ride.

Scooter rentals might be the future here in Whitewater, but that will have to wait for a later meeting. “This item I’m gonna request that it be pulled or not discussed. We did as staff obtain a request from a company Bird Scooter inc., and we would like to bring this back for discussion or consideration,” Whitewater City Manager Cameron Clapper said to the Council.

These scooters could be the future of Whitewater, Clapper wants to make sure that he and the Council “have all concerns resolved.”

Also on Tuesday:

  • City Finance Director Steve Hatten presented to the Council that the Finance Committee was able to pay off the Build America Bond 8 years sooner than expected. The effect of this will save the city of Whitewater 60 thousand dollars in interest this year.
  • The city of Whitewater has been using salt brine on the roads as a preventative measure before snowfall. Clapper wants to remind citizens to remove snow on all sidewalks. It is a city ordinance to have all snow removed 24 hours after a snowfall.
  • After-school programs have resummed here in Whitewater. Whitewater Aquatic and Fitness Center will be open to 50 percent starting in March.

Charlie Beren

October 22nd, 2019

On Saturday October 19th Charlie Berens performed a stand up comedy show at the Young Auditorium, in Whitewater, Wisconsin. This was a stop on his country wide tour, he continued to perform in Wisconsin where the next day he performed in Fish Creek, and then again on the 26th he will perform in Baraboo. After these shows we Beren’s will not be in Wisconsin until December 13th and 14th where he will be in Green Bay.

His love for the media started in highschool where his brother was the editor and chief at the school paper and got him into it. He them went to Madison to continue studying his love for Journalism, where he got great opportunities like being a student reporter for MTV. He even got to report at the GOP in Minneapolis, and was eventually was arrested along with all the protestors.

After he graduated he drove his dad’s van to Los Angeles to work for a production Company, where he did everything like run for coffee, and even transport the equipment in his van and operated cameras. He later created his own real and began working for a YouTube production group. THat led to him becoming an anchor at a major television station in Dallas. He even won an Emmy for one of his news packages.

He later went back to LA and became a host at the red carpet. Being in LA gave him opportunity like he decided to try stand-up at an open mic night, and he even was making short videos that he is known for. Like his videos of him making fun of Wisconsin or the midwest. Berens said when asked what he does when the crowd doesn’t respond well, “Whenever you get lost double down on audience”.

Local Wisconsinites are proud to see a local comedian make it big, University Wisconsin-Whitewater student Brody Maag, “I think it is really cool to see a fellow Wisconsitie make it big, I’ve watched all of his videos, and I thought it was humbling to goto his show and see him do his comedy show”. This shows how important it is to the Wisconsin community to see one of their own make it big in the Comedic community.

My digital history

September 16th, 2019

My digital history is not usual, I use the internet to keep up on my favorite sports teams. Also I will use it if I find breaking news of some sort.

For example, because the twins are really close to the playoffs and are suffering from a lot of injuries, I look them up every day to see how the injuries are coming along.

Some of the websites that I use for this type of research are sites like TwinkieTown, Twins Daily, and ESPN. I use these websites and websites like these in order to know every thing I need to know about the twins season, Injury updates and even game analysis. I will also use similar websites to see how the Timberwolves are doing this off season, or maybe see what went wrong in the Vikings game.

I also use the internet for Fantasy football, I use to see if my players are gonna play this week, or maybe to see if I have a better match up on my bench. Also to see if there are any sleepers that I should be watching out for on my leagues waiver wire.

I will also use the web for breaking stories, for example if I see something on twitter of facebook that I find interesting I will immediately goto google and will look it up. An example of this happening recently is I saw a cool story about 9/11 so then I went and looked it up.

The website that I will use for situations like this is usually CNN. This site and other sites like it are very useful to me staying with breaking news, or interesting news stories.

Other habits I have concerning the internet, I will only use google. I have tried to use other search engines but I just don’t think they are smooth and easy to use as google. Google makes it easier for me to find what I’m looking for.

I never comment or participate in blogs or different types of websites. I like to get my information from the website and use is for different things, not to tell the author that I agree or disagree with him.

I usually only use text stories I find it easier to find the information I’m looking for right away and then get off that site and look somewhere else. I will sometimes listen to a podcast, but usually if I’m watching a video on the internet it is a cut out from a earlier aired sports talk show. I do that so I can see the stories I want to see and skip the ones that I deem not interesting.

These are all of the habits that I have while dealing on the web, I mainly use it to keep up on sports, and I mainly use text articles, and I will only use google.

Minnesota Twins Injury Woes

September 11th, 2019

The Minnesota Twins have been plagued with a plethora of injuries, but none more devastating then young Center Field star Byron Buxton. Buxton has been dealing with shoulder season basically the entire second half of the season due to his aggressive defensive strategy. Buxton was just put on the 60 day DL and will miss the remainder of the season.

Other Center Field Options Max Kepler and Jake Cave are sidelined due to injury. Cave is experiencing groin tightness and Kepler is dealing with left shoulder soreness.

Just to make things worse the twins lost there best pitcher since the allstar break for the rest of the season due to performance enhancing drugs. These losses will make it rough for the twins to close out the season, while they are leading the Indians by 5 games. The Twins will need to get healthy in order to help there chances to close the season and to make a deep playoff push.

About the author

September 11th, 2019

The author is Austin Dowdall, he was born on October 16th 1998 in Stillwater Minnesota.

Austin is currently a student at the University of Wisconsin-Whitewater where he is studying broadcast-journalism. He is currently on the sports staff at UWWTV, and he is also a host for Warhawk Sports Saturday.

Austin is a sports fanatic, and likes to root for the Minnesota Vikings, Minnesota Twins, Minnesota TImberwolves, and Minnesota Golden Gopher football and basketball.

Hello world!

September 9th, 2019

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