November 3, 2011
neighbors and being involved in our community is of the utmost
importance. Some community events that might be of interest to you and
your family are listed below.
Don't Tell Me I Can't Fly
Salvation Army Fall Rummage and Bake Sale
Oak Creek Salvation Army
8853 S. Howell Avenue
Oak Creek, WI 53154
Family Free Day at Zoo
from 9:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
Milwaukee County Zoo (MAP)
10001 W. Blue Mound Road
Milwaukee, WI 53226
Children's Art in
the Garden Exhibition
Join the Villa Terrace Decorative Arts Museum for a vibrant exhibition of children’s art inspired by the Villa’s Renaissance Garden and created by students from Milwaukee-area schools. There will be an opening reception on Sunday, November 6 from 2 p.m. to 4 p.m. and the exhibit will be on display until December 4. Children’s Art in the Garden is free with paid admission to the Museum, which costs $5 for adults; $3 for students, seniors, and veterans; and is free for members, children under 12, and active military. CLICK HERE for more information.
Villa Terrace Decorative Arts Museum (MAP)
2220 N. Terrace Avenue
Milwaukee, WI 53202
12 from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.
Grobschmidt Center (MAP)
2424 15th Avenue
South Milwaukee, WI 53172
Take time to remember the brave men and women that served our country this weekend as we celebrate Veterans Day in our community.
Special Session Focus is...Trespassers?
This past Wednesday, the Senate met in Special Session to take up two bills. Unfortunately, neither of these bills were aimed at creating jobs in our state or improving Wisconsin's overall economic prosperity. The first of these two bills, Special Session Senate Bill 14, decreases the incentive for businesses to pay civil judgments awarded to consumers. The second bill taken up, Special Session Senate Bill 22, removes liability from property owners for injuries trespassers receive on the property.
I am concerned that the focus of this Special Session is drifting further away each week from its intended purpose of creating jobs for dislocated workers in our state. Proposals that do not create jobs need to go through the regular legislative session on their merits, instead of being rushed through by Senate Republicans simply to hastily fulfill a special interest wish-list.
To view a copy of Special Session Senate Bill 14, please CLICK HERE.
To view a copy of Special Session
Senate Bill 22, please
Divisive Youth Disinformation Bill Passes the Senate
For the last two weeks, Senate Republicans have pushed legislation that seeks to deny Wisconsin’s youth vital education and health information regarding contraceptives and sexually transmitted disease (STD) prevention. Yesterday they succeeded in passing it through the Senate. Senate Bill 237 overturns the Healthy Youth Act, which ensures that all young adults in Wisconsin have access to comprehensive, age appropriate, and medically accurate human growth and development classes.
I have strongly advocated for the continuation of comprehensive sex education in neighborhood schools and also introduced common sense amendments to try and improve this divisive legislation. Thus far it has been nearly impossible to get any Democratic amendment passed in this extreme Legislature as they tend to fall on deaf ears.
Fortunately, this time around
Republicans headed some of our concerns and accepted an amendment I
authored. This amendment will ensure that all of Wisconsin’s youth, even
those in school districts that adopt an abstinence-only curriculum, are
provided information about the Human papillomavirus (HPV) and the Human
immunodeficiency virus (HIV). With the passage of this amendment, our
youth will have access to adequate information about these preventable
and deadly diseases and will not be forced to rely on the information
provided to them by a Google search.
To view a copy of this bill, please
Milwaukee Parental Choice Tax Levy Increases by 22.6%
The tax levy for the Milwaukee Parental Choice Program (MPCP) will increase by 22.6% for the 2011-2012 school year, according to information recently released by the Department of Public Instruction. This drastic increase will fall onto the shoulders of City of Milwaukee property tax payers who will now be responsible for covering the nearly $55.4 million to MPCP.
MPCP enrollment has increased from 20,300 students in the 2010-2011 school year, to 22,400 in the 2011-2012 school year. At 22,400 students, MPCP enrollment trails only that of the Milwaukee, Madison and Kenosha school districts making it the fourth highest student enrollment in the state.
Ensuring Truth on Our Property Tax Bill
These recently announced tax increases
illustrate the need for greater transparency on our property tax bills.
One month ago, my Milwaukee legislative colleagues and I sent a letter
to the Milwaukee Common Council, Mayor Barrett, Treasurer Whittow and
Comptroller Morics requesting that they make the annual tax notices more
transparent by separating the tax levy associated with MPCP from the tax
levy for Milwaukee Public Schools (MPS). Milwaukee’s taxpayers deserve
to know how much of their money is going to fund private and religious
schools through the MPCP. Inclusion of this information assumes greater
transparency in government.
Remembering Our Nation's Veterans
Next Friday, November 11 is Veterans Day, also known as Armistice Day or Remembrance Day. This federal holiday honoring military veterans is celebrated every year on the anniversary of the signing of the Armistice that ended World War I. Join in honoring the brave men and women that fought for our country to preserve our nation's freedom.
There are several community events taking place during the weekend and next week to honor our neighbors who served. You can find the information for these events listed below:
City of Oak Creek Veterans Day Celebration
Saturday, November 5 from 9 a.m.
to 10 a.m.
Veterans Day Parade
Saturday, November 5 at 11 a.m.
Attend the 48th annual Veterans Day Parade and Day of Honor this Saturday in Downtown Milwaukee. The parade kicks-off off at 11a.m. from 4th and Kilbourn and heads east to the War Memorial via Wells Street. There will be a memorial service at the War Memorial immediately following the parade. For more information, please CLICK HERE.
War Memorial Center (MAP)
750 N. Lincoln Memorial Drive
Milwaukee, WI 53202
Remembering Veterans Day in St. Francis
Saturday, November 5 at 1:30 p.m.
Join seniors at the Howard Village
Retirement Community in honoring the armed forces and our community's
veterans with a Veterans Day Ceremony this Saturday. This heartfelt
program is sure to inspire as Mayor Al Richards, area veterans and
special guests come together to celebrate, honor and remember. The
ceremony will conclude with a flag raising, multi-gun salute outside and
refreshments to follow. The community is welcome. Please RSVP by calling
Howard Village Retirement Community (MAP)
2500 E. Howard Avenue
St. Francis, WI 53235
Cudahy High School's Annual Veterans Day Assembly
Friday, November 11 at 9 a.m.
This event has been described as "one of the best in Southeastern Wisconsin." The assembly will take place on Friday, November 11 at 9:00 a.m. in the school's field house. A moving, dramatic reading of the Cudahy Gold Star List - the names of all the community's men who gave their lives in service to our country during World War I, World War II, the Korean Conflict, Vietnam, and Iraqi Freedom will be featured. Many of the names on the list are former Cudahy High School students. The reading is enhanced with photos of those on the Gold Star List being projected on a giant ten-foot screen. Members of the community are invited to attend. If anyone knows of a veteran that would like to be included in this ceremony please contact Principal Christopher Haeger or Secretary Cindy Smith at (414)294-2700.
Cudahy High School (MAP)
4950 S. Lake Drive
Cudahy, WI 53110
Veterans Day Observance at the Cudahy Family Library
Friday, November 11 at 11 a.m.
This ceremony will be held in front of
the south entrance of the library on Friday, November 11 at 11 a.m. If
you wish to honor a special serviceman or woman on that day, please stop
by the library's Reference Desk or call (414) 769-2244 for more
Protecting All Neighbors from Radon Exposure
I will be supporting legislation that will be introduced shortly to provide protections for our family, friends and neighbors from being unknowingly exposed to harmful radon.
Radon is a naturally-occurring, odorless gas that is found in the ground. It exists at a higher-than-average rate in Wisconsin and often seeps into buildings where it is inhaled. Between 5-10% of Wisconsin homes have radon levels well above the suggested level of exposure. High radon levels are a particularly concerning problem in Milwaukee County, where the average indoor radon level is three times the national average.
Excessive exposure to radon can be harmful to our lungs. According to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), radon is the second leading cause of lung cancer in the United States. As radon gas decays, its particles become radioactive, causing lung damage. In order to avoid this risk, the EPA has set guidelines to safeguard against harmful radon levels within homes. The more radon located in the home, the more likely an inhabitant is to develop lung cancer or other respiratory health issues.
Under current law, owners selling homes must disclose to prospective buyers any defect relating to unsafe levels of radon in the home. LRB 1660/1 extends the same protections given to prospective home buyers to prospective tenants. This bill ensures that tenants will have knowledge of the potential health risks associated with living in a particular building before entering into a legal agreement with the property owner. Under LRB 1660/1, tenants will be provided the dates and results of any radon testing done on the premises.
I am committed to protecting families throughout our community from such immense health risks as exposure to dangerous radon levels. For this reason I will be wholeheartedly supporting LRB 1660/1.
To view a copy of LRB 1660/1, please CLICK HERE.
November is Aviation History Month
November is Aviation History Month, a
time to celebrate the storied history of the aircraft and reflect on the
important role aviation has played in our lives. So take time this
month to remember American Icons such as the Wright Brothers, Charles
Lindbergh and Neil Armstrong who helped shape this country through their
contributions to aviation.
The importance of progress in aviation can be seen in our own General Mitchell International Airport, which is one of the 30 fastest-growing airports in the world. General Mitchell is the key to economic vitality in our local community.
Our community will also greatly
benefit from constant improvement and growth of our airport, which has
spurred the creation of the Milwaukee Gateway Aerotropolis Corporation.
Aerotropolis is a non-profit organization that helps harness the
economic benefits associated with our local airport. Aerotropolis
provides sustainable infrastructure to ensure efficient economic growth
in our community, promote a secure business climate and increase jobs
for our neighbors.
Public Hearing on Hoan Bridge
Monday, November 14 from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m.
The Wisconsin Department of Transportation (DOT) released their feasibility study on including a bike and pedestrian lane as part of the Hoan Bridge reconstruction project just a few hours ago. The study includes different construction plans and cost estimates, which can be viewed by CLICKING HERE.
The DOT will be holding a public hearing on these proposals on Monday, November 14 from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. at the DOT downtown office building located at 1001 West St. Paul Avenue in Milwaukee.
I look forward to attending this meeting to learn more about these various bike lane options and hear what neighbors have to say. In choosing a final project proposal, it is important to keep in mind what the best fit is for the scope and cost of the project, and also what option will ensure safe travel for everybody.
See You in the Neighborhood
I created a new survey that I will be
distributing to neighbors asking them about various issues that are
important to them, our community and our state. I have started
distributing the survey door-to-door throughout our community and will
continue doing so for about the next month. To return the survey, simply
fold it, tape it, and put a stamp on it.
I look forward to hearing your views on these important issues. Hope to see you in the neighborhood soon!
Know Your Voting Rights
Scott Walker and Republican legislators recently enacted some of the most restrictive ID requirements for voters in the country. While they have been working to silence Wisconsin's voters, I have been working hard to keep Wisconsin's voters informed of their rights. I have created a simple handout answering some of the most frequently asked questions surrounding Wisconsin's new voter restrictions.
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