- Associated Press - Saturday, April 26, 2014
Great Lakes meeting takes aim at invasive species

CHICAGO (AP) - The governors of eight states surrounding the Great Lakes and the leaders of two Canadian provinces agreed Saturday to join forces to combat invasive species including Asian carp.

Amid disagreement over the best long-term solution and how to pay for it, the mutual aid deal reached Saturday empowers the states and Canadian provinces to share staff and expertise to do what they can to keep Asian carp from reaching the Great Lakes and imperiling the fishing industry.

“The threat of aquatic invasive species transcends borders, and this agreement allows us to address this threat through collaboration and cooperation,” said Michigan Gov. Rick Snyder, co-chairman of the Council of Great Lakes Governors.

Saturday’s final round of meetings in Chicago between the council and the Canadian provinces of Ontario and Quebec also addressed improving maritime transport and attracting Chinese and other foreign investment in manufacturing in the region.

The bighead and silver carp species have infested much of the Mississippi River basin since escaping from southern fish farms in the 1970s. They are threatening to reach the Great Lakes through rivers and canals, leading the federal government to spend millions to try to stop them. They are a menace to the aquatic food chain because they eat enormous amounts of plankton needed by native species.

The main disagreement over how to stop the fish centers on the idea of physically separating the Great Lakes and Mississippi watersheds by placing structures in the Chicago-area waterways that offer an aquatic pathway for the carp to reach Lake Michigan.

There is strong opposition to that approach in Illinois and Indiana.

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New Wisconsin law aims to ward off child ID theft

MILWAUKEE (AP) - A new Wisconsin law aims to prevent people from stealing children’s Social Security numbers to create fake credit accounts that could go undetected for years.

The Child Credit Protection Act, which was signed into law in December, lets parents create and freeze credit records for their children. The accounts remain frozen until the child turns 16, although parents can unfreeze them earlier if they choose.

State officials don’t track child identity theft and aren’t sure how widespread the problem is in Wisconsin. Still, enough parents have asked how to keep their kids’ identities safe that it made sense for the Legislature to act, said Sandy Chalmers, who runs Wisconsin’s consumer protection division.

“The problem was, children didn’t have the same credit protections that adults had. Criminals know those gaps exist so they were able to exploit them,” Chalmers said. “This law fills in those gaps.”

Here’s how it works. Parents can now contact the three major credit-reporting agencies - Equifax, Experian and TransUnion - and have them create and then freeze credit accounts in their children’s names. The action prevents someone from creating a fraudulent account using the child’s Social Security number.

If someone has already created a fake account, the action will alert parents and give them a chance to fix the damage.

Wisconsin’s law, which is among the first of its kind in the nation, also allows guardians to freeze the credit accounts of vulnerable adults, such as elderly relatives with dementia.

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Eagle crashes into boat shrink wrap on Interstate

MENOMONIE, Wis. (AP) - A couple towing a boat to northern Minnesota got a surprise visitor: a bald eagle crashed through the shrink wrap while they were traveling on Interstate 94 in Wisconsin.

The eagle dove across the top of the pickup truck of Scott and Marilyn Kregness as they crossed the Red Cedar River near Menomonie at about 70 miles an hour on Friday, according to the Chippewa Herald (http://bit.ly/1lTu7T4http://bit.ly/1lTu7T4 ).

“I ducked in the truck, he was that close,” said Scott Kregness, of Tower, Minn. “I saw him for a second and then he was gone.”

He said he and his wife looked in the rear view mirror and just saw the hole in the white shrink wrap, but no blood or feathers.

He thought: “He must have bounced out or something.” So they kept going.

But a driver following them pulled up beside them with his lights flashing and signaled for them to pull over. They stopped at a Menomonie rest stop, where the driver told the couple the eagle was still inside.

So Scott Kregness unzipped the boat cover and crawled around to the back. He soon found the eagle down between the two motors, alive and upright.

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Missing Mequon woman found dead in Milwaukee River

MEQUON, Wis. (AP) - A woman reported missing on Thursday in suburban Milwaukee has been found dead.

Mequon police say the body of 54-year-old Candace Giles was found around 10:30 p.m. Friday in the Milwaukee River.

The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reports (http://bit.ly/1rtuLYV) she was found in 6 to 8 feet of water about 10 feet from the shoreline near her Mequon home by a man who called police. An autopsy was scheduled for Saturday.

Giles was reported missing on Thursday when she did not show up for a scheduled appointment.

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Information from: Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, http://www.jsonline.comhttp://www.jsonline.com

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