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DOT: Lane closures will delay Beltline traffic

Wisconsin Department of Transportation officials said drivers should expect delays Thursday morning on the eastbound Beltline, according to a release.

One lane will be closed near Fish Hatchery Road from 9-11 a.m., officials said. The closure is to facilitate maintenance work.

Officials urge drivers to slow down and use caution in work zones.

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Police ask help to ID man in armed robbery surveillance photo

Police asked for the public?s help Wednesday identifying a man from a surveillance image of a convenience store robbery last month.

The 7-Eleven at 2703 W. Beltline Highway was robbed by an armed man Sept. 5 shortly after 5 a.m., police said in an earlier news release.

Madison police shared a photo of a man -- who appeared to be wearing white and black shorts, a dark T-shirt and a red hat -- standing in the doorway of the 7-Eleven with an arm raised pointing what looks like a handgun. His face was covered with a type of fabric or cloth.

A police dog was brought to the scene to track the robber but no one was found.
The man is described as black, 6 feet 2 inches tall, with a medium build.

Police asked anyone with information on the identity of the robber to contact Madison Area Crime Stoppers at 608-266-6014.

Madison water customers could see rate increase, conservation incentives

Madison Water Utility is asking the Public Service Commission for a rate increase and changes to its rate structure to incentivize users to conserve water.

The utility wants to increase revenue by 30 percent by increasing rates, on an annualized basis, 7.5 percent per year for each of the four years since the last rate increase. The utility has not decided how the increase will be distributed among residential, multi-family, commercial, industrial and public authority customers.

General manager Tom Heikkinen said the increase is needed to replace aging water mains, improve water quality and make a payment in lieu of taxes to the city.

This is the first rate increase requested in four years, according to the utility.

If approved, Madison Water Utility will be the largest water utility in Wisconsin to offer a conservation rate for residential customers.

If approved, the new rates would go into effect in the spring of 2015 at the earliest.

15-year-olds flee burglary, police arrest 3

Three 15-year-old boys were arrested Monday after allegedly robbing a house on Madison?s south side, according to a release.

Madison police responded to the 700 block of Engelhart Drive around 1:35 p.m. for reports of a residential burglary, officials said.

Officers saw a vehicle in the area and three of the four occupants fled, according to the release.

Two of the boys who fled were found and arrested on various charges, police said.

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Community court helps teens, community deal with minor offenses

Dane County officials are looking at a new way to deal with minor offenses to keep young people on the straight and narrow.

Monday the county announced a community restorative court on Madison?s south side. The goal of the court is to reduce long-term consequences so that a mistake at 18, 19 or 20 doesn?t prohibit offenders from getting a job and leading a productive life years down the road.

?A year ago you heard me stand and say, ?Less talk, more action.? And so today I?m excited to say this is exactly what we?re doing,? District 23 Supervisor Shelia Stubbs said. ?This is an action plan, this is an action process and Dane County is moving forward.?

The court will use a restorative justice model, which is designed to repair harm, reduce risk and rebuild community for young people ages 17-25, according to a release.

Madison debuts online water tracking tool

A new online tool is helping Madison residents keep better track of their water usage.

Madison is the first city in the state to launch an online tool that allows residents to check their monthly, daily and even hourly water use. The tool lets you compare month-to-month usage and set up email notifications to warn you of higher-than-normal usage, among other services.

"What we're talking about for us is really the ultimate conservation tool when it comes to water conservation," says Amy Barrilleaux, spokesperson for the Madison Water Utility.

Prior to the online option, residents could only track their usage by checking their monthly water bill or constantly comparing the water meter before and after use.

"This is just night and day from having to go into the basement and look at your meter to see how much water you're using every day," Barrilleaux said.

The goal is to help conserve water and dollars for Madison's residents.

Suspected drunken driver crashes into creek, flees

A Madison man was eventually arrested Saturday night after police found his vehicle partially submerged in a creek on the near east side, officials said.

Madison police officers were sent to reports of a vehicle crash that ended with the vehicle going off the roadway and into Starkweather Creek around 10 p.m., according to a release.

When officers arrived they found the vehicle partially submerged in water but no driver, police said.

The vehicle was registered to an address on Madison?s southeast side, and officers eventually made contact with Juan A. Sabino-Severiano, 18, in the area of Vernon Avenue, according to the release.

Sabino-Severiano resisted officers? attempts to handcuff him and take him into custody, but he was eventually arrested on tentative charges of resisting an officer and first-offense operating a motor vehicle while intoxicated, police said.