Randy Hanson has reported for the Star-Observer since 1997. He came to Hudson after 11 years with the Inter-County Leader at Frederic, and eight years of teaching social studies. He’s a graduate of UW-Eau Claire.
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Realty agents Cindy Otten and Laurie Larsen are making the best of a bad situation. With dozens of repossessed homes on the market because of the mortgage meltdown, Otten and Larsen have found a niche in selling them. "A home buyer should absolutely be looking right now," says Otten. "They should find some very nice deals on the market." According to Otten, a Century 21 agent based in Hudson, there are 20 to 25 repossessed homes currently for sale within the Hudson School District.
The St. Croix Valley Drug Task Force that has been at the forefront of the battle against methamphetamine trafficking is in jeopardy of being disbanded. Federal and state budget cuts reduced the task force's funding to $56,185 for 2008, and officials are worried that no federal money will be available for 2009. "The indication we are getting from the Office of Justice Assistance in Madison is that next year there will be no funding for the task force," St. Croix County Sheriff Dennis Hillstead said last month. Does that bother him? "Well, yeah. It does," he said.
The cause of a fire that destroyed a historic Baldwin grain elevator and feed mill may never be discovered. Lee Seim, the Baldwin-area dairy farmer who owned the facility, didn't have insurance on it.
Gov. Jim Doyle asked people to urge their state legislators to approve a statewide smoking ban in all public places during a stop at Pier 500 restaurant in Hudson Wednesday morning. "Whether you like the ban or don't like the ban, it is going to happen," he said. "The entire United States will be smoke-free at some time." Doyle said he would prefer an immediate ban on indoor public smoking to the gradual ban that passed the state Senate Committee on Public Health by a 3-2 vote on Tuesday. The ban approved by the Senate committee wouldn't apply to bars and restaurants until January 2010.
The new St. Croix Valley Rotaract club for young professionals will hold its first big event at Hudson Golf Club the evening of Dec. 5. The "Keys to Success Dinner" will feature motivational speaker Kenny Ray Morgan talking about "Seven Keys to Becoming a Winning Professional in the 21st Century." Morgan is the founder and CEO of Morgan's Custom Clothiers and Kenny Ray Live! Seminars. An Eden Prairie, Minn., resident, Morgan worked as an accountant for four Fortune 500 companies before deciding to pursue his real passion - clothing.
Leading proponents of the Wisconsin Senate Democrats' plan to provide health insurance coverage for nearly all residents of the state made their case for the "Healthy Wisconsin" program during a visit to Hudson last Thursday night. "This is the absolute most-right thing to do," said State Sen.
Former Hudson Raider football players Eric VandenHeuvel and Kraig Urbik figured prominently into a recent Madison newspaper story speculating on who will replace Joe Thomas as the Badgers' left offensive tackle next season. Thomas is expected to be a top pick in the coming National Football League draft. He also is the fiancé of Hudson's Annie Nelson, a former player for the Wisconsin women's basketball team. The March 7 Capital Times quoted Badgers offensive line coach Bob Palcic as saying, "Who knows?
An Aug. 27 trial date has been set for a 45-year-old River Falls man accused of soliciting sex from an online acquaintance that he believed was a 14-year-old girl. According to Florida authorities, the girl that Brian D. Hanson thought he was communicating with through an Internet chat room was actually investigators with the Sarasota County Sheriff's Department. Hanson was charged last October with a felony count of computer solicitation of a minor for sexual activity. Three other felony counts of solicitation were dismissed. Sarasota County Circuit Judge Deno G.
Sign company owners expressed strong displeasure with a moratorium on new outdoor signs in a meeting at the St. Croix County Government Center last Thursday evening. The County Board's Planning and Zoning Committee held the meeting to get public input before redrafting the county's 40-year-old sign ordinance. The six-month moratorium that began Jan. 1 was enacted by the County Board out of concern about an increase in the number of requests for new signs.
A 45-year-old River Falls man who was scheduled to move into a house in Hudson built by Habitat for Humanity has been charged in Sarasota County, Fla., with an attempt to solicit sex with a 14-year-old girl. Brian D. Hanson was arraigned Dec. 15 in Florida on the felony charge of solicitation of a lewd and lascivious act with a child under the age of 16.