Researcher: Wisconsin foreclosure rates lowest in 2 decades

A researcher who tracks foreclosures in Wisconsin says the state has the lowest foreclosure rate it's seen in nearly two decades.The Wisconsin Public Radio reports that University of Wisconsin-Whitewater economic professor Russell Kashian says the rates have dropped because of stricter lending criteria, more renters and high employment rates.Kashian started tracking foreclosures in 2008 in order to identify hot spots in Wisconsin.

New group forms to fight for UW funding

MADISON, Wis. (AP) - A new group is forming to push for ending a University of Wisconsin System tuition freeze and more state funding for UW-Madison. Badgers United launched Monday. The board of directors includes former Major League Baseball Commissioner Bud Selig, a UW-Madison alumnus. John and Tashia Morgridge, alumni who have donated millions of dollars to the campus, also sit on the board.

GOP bill would allow pharmacists to prescribe birth control

MADISON, Wis. (AP) - Republican lawmakers are introducing a bill that would allow pharmacists to prescribe birth control pills.Under current state law only doctors can prescribe hormonal birth control. Reps. Joel Kitchens and Mary Felzkowski introduced a bill Tuesday that would allow pharmacists to prescribe hormonal contraceptive patch and birth control pills. Patients would have to fill out a self-assessment questionnaire and undergo a blood pressure screening.

More people dying in Wisconsin, but elderly living longer

MADISON, Wis. (AP) - More people are dying in Wisconsin, but the state's growing elderly population is living longer.Those are two findings of the annual death report from the Wisconsin Department of Health Services. The latest report released Monday looks at deaths in 2017.It found that deaths were up 15% compared with a decade ago. But the death rate for people age 65 and older decreased by 10% over 10 years.

Report: Spring flooding may hit southwest Wisconsin

LA CROSSE, Wis. (AP) - National Weather Service predictions suggest that flood-prone areas of southwestern Wisconsin could see high waters this spring.Wisconsin Public Radio reports that the weather agency in La Crosse has forecast an above-normal flood risk along the Mississippi River and its tributaries through May. The agency's First 2019 Spring Flood Outlook report notes that runoff could be more likely in the region because of snowpack and deeply frozen ground.

Tomah School Board bans Confederate flag

TOMAH, Wis. (AP) - Tomah joins seven other schools in the Mississippi Valley Conference in banning the Confederate flag.The Tomah School Board voted unanimously to approve the ban during a special meeting Monday.Confederate flags and monuments have come under renewed scrutiny following the 2015 shooting of nine black church members in South Carolina and the 2017 deadly white nationalist rally in Charlottesville, Virginia.

End of era: Family-owned retail chain closes

FENNIMORE, Wis. (AP) - A family-owned variety store chain in southwestern Wisconsin is closing, marking the end of an era replaced by big box retailers and internet sales.Friday is the last day for World of Variety in Fennimore, Boscobel, Mt. Horeb and Cross Plains. It's been a 47-year run for the chain.WISC-TV reports that at one point, World of Variety had six locations, with the other two in Verona and Darlington. They closed two years ago.