By Sara Nichols, executive director at Open Arms Free Clinic, Elkhorn, Wisconsin
As the executive director at Open Arms Free Clinic in Elkhorn, Wisconsin, I oversee licensed medical volunteers who provide essential health care to uninsured individuals in Walworth County who are at or below 200 percent of the federal poverty level.
I’m proud of the work my colleagues and I do, filling a critical need for accessible health care for those who have few options.
STATELINE NEWS -- Gov. Scott Walker and other officials toured the new CareerTek facility Feb. 22, 2017 in Beloit.
Hendricks CareerTek, created by the Stateline Boys and Girls Club in collaboration with Diane Hendricks, Kim Bliss and the Hendricks Family Foundation, is a new career center located on the Beloit Ironworks campus.
The ribbon cutting was held Thursday, Feb. 23, 2017.
Led by Dr. Tina Salzman, business and education director, CareerTek will address the growing need for highly skilled workers in Beloit, specifically within the Ironworks campus itself.
The project was created by the Stateline Boys and Girls Club in collaboration with Diane Hendricks, Kim Bliss and the Hendricks Family Foundation.
To make this a reality, Hendricks CareerTek has partnered with Irontek Business Incubator, the IT company Comply 365, the Greater Beloit Chamber of Commerce, the School District of Beloit, and other local businesses.
Hendricks CareerTek will provide career development, education and other opportunities to Beloit youth while also helping keep students in Wisconsin following high school and college graduation.
It will work to get students interested in potential careers, create a functional workforce for local Beloit businesses and the state of Wisconsin, and provide workshops and other educational services to complement skills that are in high-demand by today's workforce, such as coding, healthcare, manufacturing, and entrepreneurship.
Academic credit is not offered, but Hendricks CareerTek programs will provide tangible skills to students as they enter Wisconsin's workforce or pursue secondary education at a university, tech school or trade program.
STATELINE NEWS -- Rod Gottfredsen, owner of Austin’s Barber Shop downtown can be forgiven for never having seen the public television program "Around the Corner with John McGiver."
That’s because he doesn’t own a TV.
But he does have internet access and owns an iPad, so when he was asked to take part in the episode, he turned to YouTube to catch a few past episodes of the show. Since the filming, he’s watched many more.
STATELINE NEWS -- An Illinois state Senator earlier this month introduced a bill to increase the speed limit to 75 mph on many of the state’s interstates as well as make 60 the maximum speed limit on rural highways.
State Sen. Jim Oberweis, R-North Aurora, in 2014 also pushed Illinois to become the 37th state to push its speed limit to 70.
The bill increased the speed limit to 75 on Interstate 355, Interstate 80 and every interstate west of Interstate 355 and south of Interstate 80.
It also would push the maximum speed outside an urban district to 60 on all highways, roads and streets that do not have four or more lanes of traffic and are not interstate highways.
BELOIT -- One of the four men accused in the shooting death a year ago of 5-year-old Austin Ramos Jr., says he has an alibi.
Sergio Ortiz-Raygoza’s attorney claims that his client was in Iowa at the time of the shooting, and that witnesses can corroborate, according to WCLO.
Ortiz’s trial has been postponed until the middle of July.
Ramos Jr. was shot and killed about 7 p.m. Friday, Jan. 22, near the intersection of Prairie Avenue and Shopiere Road in Beloit.
Ramos was a passenger in a car driven by his father, Austin Ramos Sr., when another vehicle pulled alongside and opened fire. Ramos was shot in the abdomen and died a short time later at Beloit Memorial Hospital of "firearm-related trauma," according to the Rock County medical examiner’s office during that time.
Four suspects, Sergio Ortiz-Raygoza, 23; Eric Salazar-Mota, 21; Issac W. Torres, 24; and Hugo Martinez, 18, were charged with first-degree intentional homicide. The four suspects have since pleaded not guilty.
STATELINE NEWS -- Latino community advocates are asking Beloit officials to consider creating a municipal identification card for those who are unable to obtain a state ID or drivers license.
The Winnebago County Zoning Committee on Wednesday voted to reject a special use permit that would allow an asphalt plant to operate along Black’s Quarry in Rockton.
The final decision, however, is up to the full Winnebago County Board, which meets March 9, 2017.
BELOIT -- Fans can begin purchasing single-game tickets for the Beloit Snappers 2017 season beginning at 9 a.m. on Monday, Feb. 27. Fans can secure their spot for any of the bobblehead giveaways, Saturday night firework shows and other high-demand promotional nights for the upcoming baseball season.
STATELINE NEWS -- Audience members viewing "End of Fall" at this year’s Beloit International Film Festival (beloitfilmfest.org/films/end-of-fall/) may find the movie’s locale and even some of its extras familiar. That’s because independent filmmaker and 1992 Big Foot High School grad Joselito Seldera shot his first feature film, a crime thriller, in Walworth County, where he grew up.
"End of Fall" will be shown at 7:30 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 25, 2017 at Domenico’s and at 2:30 p.m. Sunday, Feb. 26, 2017 at the Hendricks Center for the Arts.
What: 12th annual Beloit International Film Festival
When: Feb. 24 through March 5
Where: Film venues include Bagels & More, Bushel & Peck’s, La Casa Grande, Domenico’s, Luxury 10 and the Hendricks Center.