Hoping to move to WI (Beaver Dam Area)

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    How is the living/Job situation up there folks? I am going to come up to find a job next fall. By that time I will have my BSN and 18 months of critical cardiac care experience. My wife however will be a new grad. Is there many jobs up there? Is it hard for a newbie to find one? Do you like Wisconsin? Are the taxes resonable and are there good elementary and high schools? Should we be concerned about crime? I thank you for any comments you may be able to provide...and GO PACKERS!!!!
  2. 8 Comments so far...

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    Beaver Dam is a small town with small town ways. Everyone seems to know everyone's business. The job market is okay but not exactly great. Taxes are HIGH! Downtown looks horrible. I'm from Indy orginally and find many people just rude, but then again I'm not from here. Crime is really nonexistant, you don't have to worry about getting shot or anything. The schools are average in my opinion, they are a bit behind (2 years) according to my teenager and he's getting bored with school because of it. Finding a job shouldn't be difficult for either of you though.
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    Hi!
    I live between Columbus and Sun Prairie (about 25 min from Beaver Dam, towards Madison). So I don't know Beaver Dam that well, but I know that a lot of people drive from Columbus (12 min from Beaver Dam) into Madison to work. If you are willing to live south of beaver dam I think you could make it to the big hospitals in 45 min. There is also a new emergency center that is an extension of Meriter hospital ( and I think there might be plans to make it more than emergency) in Sun Prairie. So about 25-30 min. from Beaver Dam. I don't know too much about the schools since my kids are still little. I have heard though that the charter school in Columbus is awesome. It starts in kindergarten and is science based and since it is public it is free. I would stay out of the Sun Prairie schools. River Falls is almost on top of columbus but they have their own schools--very small though. By the way DeForest is nice too. nice schools. I taught in that district and my husband and I went to high school there. Good luck with everything! (if you haven't moved already that is :-) )
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    The job market right now for nurses in Wisconsin is almost non-existent. Wisconsin has a surplus of nurses, and pretty much all of hospitals through out the state have hiring freezes, laying off, and just not hiring people who leave. So yes, it would certainly be tough for the both of you to get jobs, especially if your wife is a newbie. I have 10 years experience in ER and ICU and I can't even get an interview!!!
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    Hi FarmerRN!
    That is so frustrating!! I hope things turn around for you. I just assumed since Meriter had so many jobs posted on their website that they were hiring. The job list seems to change too so I thought people were being hired. You are obviously very experienced so I hope you find something soon...this dang economy :-( Hopefully things will get better soon.
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    I talked to someone who works at meriter... and the jobs they have posted are not "real" they are shuffling them but not doing a lot of hiring.... the market is not good but i heard milwaukee is still doing well.???
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    so interesting..:-( I hope that if you are almost done with school that you can find a job. Good luck to all of you!!
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    The beaver Dam hosital is absolutely the worst hospital I have ever encountered. I tell everyone if they are ever in need of care in that area they should insist on being flighted ot transferred elsewhere. The md's there are one's that didn't make it elsewhere, family members have had surgeries there with sponges and other objects left inside on other operations on the SAME PERSON and a collapsed lung went unnoticed for 4 days, with XRAYS and dr's shrugging their shoulders wonding why the o2 sat's were only in the 80's. Hmm. the town is small, but i agree with others, not much to do, not the greatest place.
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    I live just south of Beaver Dam - it would probably be my last choice in looking for work. My in-laws have their doctors there and my husband and myself have never been happy with the care either has received. They just built a new hospital that has smaller exam rooms and no additional procedures (or at least not anything really impressive, like open hearts or anything). I believe they were asking employees to voluntarily contribute to the cost of the new facility, that just rubs me the wrong way!

    WI is overflowing with nurses right now, tough to find a spot. If you have to stay in the Beaver Dam area, at least find a home close to 151, then you have better access to Madison and Fond du Lac.

    I don't think crime in BD is too bad, especially since every shopper in the Pig has their purse in their cart and is 3 aisles over from it, LOL. Can't speak on school quality - no kids, but stay out of Dodgeville school district - they built a humongo school about 10 years ago (for $17 mil) which is pretty empty, but of course we still have to pay for it. Grades K-12 in one building, not sure how comfortable I'd be with that if I had kids there. Just read taxes on that school district to go up almost 10%. Our property tax has increased 80% in the 9 years we have been here, so I am really looking forward to this year's bill!

    As for other taxes - we pay through the nose and get pretty much nothing, at least rurally. There are no caps on any taxes in the state and they pretty much do what they want. There are no watchdogs and no one seems to think anything of getting a hefty hike on their property taxes each year. State tax is prorated to income, so you may find yourself forking out 8%+. Pensions count as income and are state taxable (except Milw. Police and teachers - who made up that rule?), except when you try to use them for the married workers credit, then they don't count as income since they're not earned. It's like the old western towns where they make their own rules. I think there's corruption up the ying yang, and that's saying something since I'm from Chicago, LOL.

    And if you smoke, we are now the 5th highest taxes in the country - cartons of name brands are $65-72. Especially disconcerting since the wage base really does not support that.

    My husband (born and raised in WI, left when he was 18 and came back when he retired) is so disgruntled, he told me when he dies, I should pound the For Sale sign in the ground on the way to his funeral!


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