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Wisconsin roundup: Regulation change could put wastewater plants on hook for millions; more state news stories

The Department of Natural Resources is considering changes for phosphorus regulations at three Wisconsin lakes.

The move could cost wastewater treatment facilities millions of dollars. State environmental officials say phosphorus restrictions of Petenwell and Castle Rock lakes could be loosened, while they should be tightened on Lake Wisconsin. About a dozen wastewater operations could be forced to spend more than $16 million to comply over the next two decades. Another two dozen could save $180 million over the same time period. The DNR board could take a vote at its meeting Wednesday.


Father going to jail for not feeding son, 5

A father from Wrightstown has been sentenced to four months in jail for starving his 5-year-old adopted son.

Forty-one-year-old Bradley Fahrenkrug had pleaded no contest to a charge of child neglect. Kimberly Fahrenkrug was sentenced in May. The couple told investigators the boy was violent and often refused to eat, but police say he shows none of the behavior alleged by his adoptive parents. The boy weighed just 29 pounds when doctors checked him out in April. The Fahrenkrug's say they had no similar problems with their biological children. Bradley Fahrenkrug will serve his four-month sentence after his wife completes her 9-month jail term.


DNR says human error led to sewer water entering Wisconsin River

The Department of Natural Resources reports human error is to blame for the release of sewer water into the Wisconsin River last January.

About 6,500 pounds of anhydrous milk fat from the Kraft Heinz cheese plant in Wausau drained into the sewer and plugged it up when the material solidified. That led to 3.7 million gallons of sewer water flowing into the river. The human error involved a valve being set incorrectly during a production run. The cleanup cost the city more than $51,000.


Sand mine seeking expansion in Chippewa County

Chippewa County officials have 60 days to decide whether to grant permits for the expansion of a sand mine near Bloomer.

Chippewa Sand Company wants to expand its 142-acre operation to nearly 1,100 acres of land. People who live nearby worry about the impact on the drinking water supply and wildlife. The company says it wants to drain its contaminated storm and wastewater into a nearby stream. A public meeting was held Tuesday night at the Chippewa County courthouse.


Speaker Ryan criticized trade policy, tariffs

House Speaker Paul Ryan says he doesn't think tariffs are the "way to go."

The Wisconsin Republican says the United State should take steps against unfair trade practices by its partners, but he thinks there are ways to do that which are better than tariff increases. Ryan didn't mention President Trump by name when questioned by reporters. The president's trade policies are being blamed for a decision by Wisconsin-based Harley-Davidson to shift some production of its iconic motorcycle lines to locations overseas.


1 charged, 2 sought in theft of cop’s service weapon

The Dunn County Sheriff's Office is searching for two people in the theft of a police officer's gun at a car wash in La Crosse.

Twenty-eight-year-old Mathew Docken has been arrested. Surveillance video from Quick 'N' Clean car wash shows a woman carrying a bag to Docken's convertible June 2. Authorities are looking for 37-year-old Donald Norberg II and 30-year-old Katie Briggs. Docken told officers Norberg wanted to trade the gun for drugs. He says they threw the weapon away later. Police haven't been able to find the gun or the bag it was in when it was taken.