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WISCONSIN GOVERNOR-RECALL

Liberal group offers petition destruction reward

MADISON, Wis. (AP) -- A liberal advocacy group has offered a $10,000 reward to combat the destruction of petitions to recall Republican Gov. Scott Walker.

One Wisconsin Now announced the reward Tuesday for information that leads to the arrest and conviction of anyone who destroys petitions.

Group director Scot Ross says he was motivated following reports of one petition being destroyed in Madison and a Facebook page advocating for destroying petitions.

The Republican Party has launched its own website where it encourages people to report incidents of fraud related to the signing of petitions. It has also made public Facebook posts where people have claimed to sign other people's names or their own name multiple times, in violation of the law.

Circulators need more than 540,000 signatures by Jan. 17 to force a recall.

UNION PROTEST-SICK NOTES

Judge orders school district to release sick notes

(Information in the following story is from: Wisconsin State Journal, http://www.madison.com/wsj)

MADISON, Wis. (AP) -- A Dane County judge has ordered the Madison School District to release more than 1,000 sick notes submitted by teachers during mass protests at the state Capitol over collective bargaining.

Judge Juan Colas said the district's blanket denial to the Wisconsin State Journal is a violation of Wisconsin's open records law. The district argued the notes contain medically sensitive information that could embarrass teachers. State Journal editor John Smalley says the newspaper isn't planning to publish individual teacher names, but rather report on the general nature of the notes the district received from the teachers.

Madison schools were closed for four days in February when some teachers attended protests of Gov. Scott Walker's cuts to collective bargaining rights for most public workers.

INTERNATIONAL CUSTODY CASE

Wis. dad wins custody of daughter taken to Japan

(Information in the following story is from: Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, http://www.jsonline.com)

MILWAUKEE (AP) -- A Wisconsin father has won an international custody case that could bring his 9-year-old daughter home from Japan by Christmas.

The girl's mother, Emiko Inoue (em-EE'-koh IN'-uh-way), pleaded no contest to interfering with child custody in Milwaukee County Circuit Court Monday and agreed to return Karina Garcia to Wisconsin.

Japan isn't part of an international compact on child abduction. So the girl's return would be a landmark case for children abducted to Japan and returned with legal intervention.

The mother fled to her native Japan with the girl in February 2008, shortly after her husband, Moises Garcia, filed for divorce. The Journal Sentinel reports the girl was born in Wisconsin and is currently living with her maternal grandparents in Japan.

HUNTER DEATH-MANITOWOC COUNTY

Body of hunter found following extensive search

(Information in the following story is from: WOMT-AM, http://www.womtradio.com)

MANITOWOC, Wis. (AP) -- An elderly deer hunter has been found dead in Manitowoc County following an extensive search.

Sheriff Rob Hermann said Tuesday there was no sign of an accident or foul play contributing to the death of the 80-year-old man. He has not yet been identified.

WOMT radio reports a helicopter from Theda Clark Medical Center, search dogs and personnel and equipment from at least six area fire departments searched for the man for about two hours before his body was found in the Town of Maple Grove in northwestern Manitowoc County.

LAKE MICHIGAN-GARBAGE

Report: Mich. beach garbage likely from Milwaukee

MUSKEGON, Mich. (AP) -- A report says trash that washed up on Lake Michigan beaches in West Michigan in 2008 and 2010 likely came from Milwaukee sewer overflows.

The Alliance for the Great Lakes report Monday cited an investigation by the Coast Guard and the Environmental Protection Agency. The environmental group obtained Coast Guard and EPA documents using the federal Freedom of Information Act.

Milwaukee Metropolitan Sewerage District spokesman Bill Graffin tells the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel the agency plans to review the findings with Coast Guard officials.

The Muskegon Chronicle reports that when waste washed up in 2008 and 2010 officials said it likely came from Milwaukee. The new documents support that initial belief. The EPA found no federal permit violations linked to the sewer overflows.

The trash included syringes and other medical waste.

GREEN BAY MUSEUM

New Green Bay children's museum to open in spring

(Information in the following story is from: Green Bay Press-Gazette, http://www.greenbaypressgazette.com)

GREEN BAY, Wis. (AP) -- The Children's Museum of Green Bay is expected to open this April and designers nationwide are helping with the exhibits.

Exhibit designer Mark Catton works with MurphyCatton Inc., a Kentucky-based contractor that specializes in interactive exhibits.

His company is building a miniature restaurant and store where children will get hands-on experiences in pretending to cook food, operate a cash register and other things.

Other exhibits will include a lighthouse and beach scene with actual water, an 18-foot-tall tree that children can climb, a miniature Lambeau leap area and a make-believe human digestive system that children can crawl through.

The Green Bay Press-Gazette reports organizers have raised $2.9 million in donations toward their goal of $4.5 million.

(Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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