After one week, you might understand if the state of Wisconsin was still in a transition mode under the state's new indoor workplace smoking ban. Actually, Smokefree Wisconsin's Maureen Busalacchi says things are going pretty well. Even at bars. Busalacchi says that non-smokers are venturing out and exploring taverns that would have avoided before because of the smoke. Busalacchi contends that any business bars are losing now by going non-smoking, they'll more than make up for later. But, she admits, there just might be some bars that don't survive having the state go non-smoking indoors.
Two men from the twin cities die and another is injured in a scuba diving accident near Black River Falls. By the time Jackson County cops arrived at Wazee Lake Recreation Area all three men had been pulled from the water and CPR was getting used on the lone survivor. Police are investigating what killed the 60 and 57 year old scuba divers. Their 53 year old companion was injured but there's no update on his condition.
No injuries but the man involved in a standoff with LaCrosse cops remains in the hospital. At about 8:30 Saturday night police responded to a domestic disturbance at a home on the 12 hundred block on 16th street. When cops tried to enter the homeowner fired his gun. Police got geared up with bulletproof vests and high powered rifles before creating a perimeter around the south side LaCrosse home. After holing himself up in his house for about five hours the man surrendered himself to police. Cops say they can't release the name of the guy behind the standoff because he's checked into the hospital. Neighbors say he's a nice guy and serves as a local firefighter.
So far in La Crosse, if you've collected a ticket for smoking indoors, count yourself among the very, very unlucky. Police say they've written just four tickets to those violationg Wisconsin's new indoor workplace smoking ban. The tickets are 164 dollars. Those tickets were written to individuals smoking in just two establishments, police say; The Helm and Del's Bar. Both of those were given warnings. The law requires businesses get warned before being cited for allowing smoking indoors.
There's plenty of vacancies in La Crosse's city hall. Seems like none of them are getting filled. And city council member Marilyn Wigdahl wonders what kind of negative effect on city services that will have over time. Like the seven vacancies currently in the city's fire department. Wigdahl worries about what would happen if that department is short-staffed during a major fire in the city. She's also convinced that, with too many vacancies, the fire department will simply have to shut down a fire station at some point. Wigdahl is among those asking for a report on how vacancies left unfilled by mayoral directive are impacting city departments.