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  • District Day
  • Budget Listening Session
  • "Healthy Kids Day"
  • Intern Grace


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District Day and Listening Session

Last Friday, I had my second district day in Marinette. I had the opportunity to meet with Main Street business owners and operators to talk about economic development for our area. The #MyMarinetteMenominee movement energized our local area. I am proud of the work being done to make our community a better place to work, live, and most importantly, raise a family.

The second stop of the day was at Rheinmetall Automotive. They are a company that makes millions of pistons annually for car and truck engines that are manufactured in the United States. Rheinmetall Automotive is one of the many businesses that make northeastern Wisconsin an economic powerhouse for our state. Thank you for having me tour your plant.

I finished up the day with a listening session in Marinette at the Marinette Town Hall. We had a lively and informative discussion on the issues most important to the Marinette area. Clean water and budget issues were the most frequently discussed issues. I know how important clean water is to our communities, that's why I authored a bill requiring the Department of Health Services (DHS) to establish groundwater quality standards for perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA) and perfluorooctane sulfonate (PFOS). In the Marinette area, the testing of firefighting foam containing these chemicals has led to contamination of the groundwater. Testing is also beginning to reveal elevated concentrations of PFAS and PFOA in wells the Milwaukee and Madison areas. I will continue to look at ways to get a better grasp on these chemicals and address the contamination they are causing.

Thank you to all those who came to the listening session! I greatly value your input. As always, if you have any questions, comments, or concerns, please contact my office and we'll be glad to help.



Budget Listening Session

This week the Joint Committee on Finance held its final public hearing of the 2019-21 state budget. As you may know, I am Co-Chair of the state's budget-writing committee, the Joint Committee on Finance.

After the Governor introduces his budget, the legislature's process of reviewing and changing the proposed budget begins. Earlier this month, we took our first step by holding our agency briefings. This was the opportunity for state agencies to come before the committee to talk about the Governor’s budget recommendations.

We heard from the Department of Public Instruction, Department of Transportation, Department of Health Services, Department of Workforce Development, Department of Corrections and the Department of Natural Resources.

Following Agency Briefings, we go around the state to listen to the public on items they support and items they disagree with. This input helps us craft a budget that reflects the values of all of Wisconsin, not just Madison.

We held four public hearings in total, in Janesville, Oak Creek, River Falls, and Green Bay. On Wednesday, we held our fourth and final, in Green Bay.

Before the hearing, members of the committee toured Titletown Tech in Green Bay. Titletown Tech works with businesses and startups to grow Wisconsin’s economy. They focus on sports business, healthcare, advanced manufacturing, and technology. Titletown Tech has a business seed fund with funding from Microsoft, the Packers, Boston Bruins, and New York Mets.

It is always encouraging to see so many people involved in the democratic process. Through public testimony, we will now create a budget that includes your priorities.

Next up in the budget process is executive sessions. This is where we take the input we received from the public hearings to make changes to Governor Evers budget. Over the next couple of months, we will go through the budget line by line to make sure your tax dollars are being spent in a responsible and effective manner. If you have additional questions, comments, or concerns, please contact my office.

Here are some photos from our tour of Titletown Tech:


YMCA Hosts "Healthy Kids Day"

The Greater Marinette-Menominee YMCA and The Great Start Collaborative of Menominee County is hosting a “Healthy Kids Day” at Marinette High School this Saturday, April 27 to promote staying active and learning during the summer.

The event is free to all the community and is meant to spark kids’ imagination through fun activities. From 9 am to 1 pm, kids can participate in a diverse array of stations, like bouncy houses, face painting, sacks, live bees, balloon animals, hands-on activities, slime, star lab, and crafts. From 9:30 am to 12:30 pm, there will be live snakes (be careful!), and then, from 10:00 am to 12:30 pm, there will be free swimming. This year for the first time, the Community REC Center will have their turf field and basketball court free for all participants. The event at the high school will have more than 20 organizations from around the area who will provide their own exciting, hands-on learning experience at their tables. The Y asks that people register at the high school before going over the REC Center.

“Healthy Kids Day” is not just happening in Marinette, but celebrated at over 1,500 Ys across the country attracting more than one million participants. Its purpose is to promote kids being active, learning, and establishing healthy habits that they can pursue all summer long. Research has shown that a lack of out-of-school activities can impact a child’s academic success in the future. Kids also gain weight twice as fast in the summer than during the school year. Therefore, “Healthy Kids Day” wants to inspire kids and their families to challenge themselves with new activities and have fun while doing it over the summer.

According to Michell Hampton, child development director at the Greater Marinette-Menominee YMCA, “When a child is healthy, happy, and supported they can make great things happen. We believe in the potential of all children, and we strive to help kids find that potential within themselves. A child’s development is never on vacation and “Healthy Kids Day” is a great opportunity to educate families and motivate kids to stay active in spirit, mind, and body throughout the summer.”

Intern Grace

Since January, Grace, a freshman from Burlington who is studying at UW-Madison has been interning in my office. This week is her last week in our office before she goes to Washington DC to intern in Congress.

Over the last few months, Grace has been a tremendous help in our office with scheduling, policy research, and helping constituents in the 89th Assembly District with their questions and concerns.

I want to thank Grace for her amazing work and wish her the best in her future endeavors.


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