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  7/25/2014
WI Makes New Income Tax Reciprocity Offer to MN
(St. Paul, MN) -- Wisconsin has made a new offer to restore income tax reciprocity with Minnesota, so people who work across the border can again file taxes with their home state instead of both. The latest offer does not include the Gopher State's request for an extra payment of up to six-million dollars a year. Wisconsin Revenue Secretary Rick Chandler calls that unprecedented. Because more Wisconsinites work in Minnesota than vice versa, the Badger State used to make annual payments to make the arrangement financially equal for both states. Minnesota Governor Rick Pawlenty cut off the 40-year arrangement in 2009 because Wisconsin was getting behind on its payments. Minnesota says it's been fair in the effort to bring it back, saying it cut a million-dollars a year from its previous request. Under Wisconsin's latest offer, Chandler says the Badger State would still increase its payments to Minnesota from the 58-million dollars in 2009 to 87-million for the 2015 tax year.


7/25/2014
Fatal Six-Vehicle Crash Near WI-MN Border
(La Crosse, WI) -- One person died and at least two others were hurt when six vehicles collided at an Interstate construction zone near the Minnesota-Wisconsin state line. It happened yesterday morning on I-90 just north of La Crosse, near French Island. The Wisconsin State Patrol's preliminary investigation shows that traffic was merging into the construction zone when a dump truck could not slow down in time, and it rear-ended another vehicle. A van and four cars also got snarled up in the crash. T-V reports said the dump truck landed on top of one of the cars, and both rolled into a median where they started on fire. The drivers' names were not immediately released. An investigation continues.


7/25/2014
Man Accused in Vikings Son's Death Pleads Not Guilty
(Sioux Falls, SD) -- The man accused in the death of Vikings Star Adrian Peterson's son has pleaded not guilty to charges he allegedly attacked the boy's mother in South Dakota. Joseph Patterson was arrested in June after police say he attacked the mother of two-year-old Tyrese Ruffin in the Sioux Falls area and held her against her will. The 28-year-old was living with the same woman last October when he was accused of beating Ruffin to death. Patterson is set to go on trial in each case in the coming months.


7/25/2014
Vos Wants WI Off List of Places Where Fed is Sending Unaccompanied Immigrant Kids
State Assembly Speaker Robin Vos wants Wisconsin off the list of places where the federal government is sending unaccompanied immigrant children crossing the U-S border. Vos and three other Assembly Republicans wrote to the head of Homeland Security, saying it's better for the minors to be located near the nation's southern border -- so families can be promptly re-united. Vos, G-O-P finance chair John Nygren of Marinette, and fellow Assembly Republicans Joel Kleefisch of Oconomowoc and Dave Craig of Big Bend signed the letter. They said Wisconsin is a generous state that's willing to help in times of emergency but in their words, "The federal government should not prioritize the needs of others over our own residents." Vos and the other Republicans said they were "beyond frustrated" that the Obama administration has not given adequate information to state officials -- including the potential for health risks that the immigrants might bring in. And the lawmakers want to know if the children would be classified as refugees, which means they could get state public assistance benefits. Federal officials have contacted various officials and agencies in Milwaukee and Madison about hosting the immigrants. The A-P said about 50 of them have been placed in the state.


7/25/2014
Appeals Ct. Reinstates WI Lead Paint Suit
A federal appeals court has ruled against Wisconsin's governor and Legislature, by letting a Milwaukee teen sue up to six paint-makers after he got sick eating lead-based paint chips. The family of Ernest Gibson, who's now 17, did not know which company made the paint that sickened the teen. The State Supreme Court ruled in 2005 that victims could sue all companies that made lead-based paint before it was banned in the 1970's. Conservatives called the ruling a slap to Wisconsin's efforts to attract business -- and in 2011, majority Republicans required paint victims to identify the companies which made the product which got them sick. Two years later, the G-O-P imposed the same requirement on 170 other lead poisoning victims who filed suit before the burden-of-proof was raised. Gibson was one of those people. Yesterday, the Seventh Circuit Appellate court in Chicago found that he had a "vested right" to pursue his negligence claims. This case also had a profound impact on former State Supreme Court Justice Louis Butler, who wrote the 2005 decision. Butler later lost an election bid, as opponents kept harping on his lead-based paint ruling. Later, Republicans in Congress struck down four attempts by President Obama to name Butler to a lifetime federal judgeship.


 


 

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