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In This Edition...

  • Governor Evers' Cabinet Picks 

  • Our Reforms are Working 

  • Cyber Safety 

  • USDA Technical Assistance Webinar

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Ron's Recap: February 8, 2019  

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Hello! Welcome to another edition of Ron's Recap for the 104th Legislative Session. This periodic e-newsletter will keep you up-to-date on news from the Capitol and provide other helpful information. Feel free to contact Ron if you have any questions about information in this email, if you have an opinion on a legislative issue, or if you have a problem with a state agency. 

Governor Evers' Cabinet Picks

Over the past few months, Governor Evers has hand-picked individuals to serve in his cabinet. As I wish for the Governor, I wish his appointees the best and look forward to working with the Administration this session to help better our state. However, one important aspect is missing from his cabinet selections: geographic diversity. 

Governor Evers failed to capitalize on Wisconsin's geographic diversity. Eleven of his fifteen selections are from either Madison or Milwaukee and one of the four not from Milwaukee or Madison is from Washington, DC. While Madison and Milwaukee are Wisconsin's largest cities, they only make up about 850,000 of Wisconsin’s 5,795,000 million population. That’s only one seventh of Wisconsin’s total population.

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Our Reforms are Working

According to the Legislative Fiscal Bureau, one of the Legislature's non-partisan service agencies, Wisconsin is in an excellent position heading into the 2019-2021 budget cycle. I am proud to say that because of Republican reforms over the past eight years, good budgeting, and a strong economy, overall revenue and ending balances are at record high levels.

Since the state of our finances is so strong, Assembly Republicans introduced a middle class tax cut, so that millions of Wisconsinites will see more of their hard earned money returned to them. It's your money, you should keep it!

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Cyber Safety

The Wisconsin Department of Justice (DOJ) Internet Crimes Against Children (ICAC) Task Force, in partnership with the Department of Public Instruction (DPI), is launching interact!, a new online safety resource for families. 

Interact! is an online, interactive e-course created for parents and guardians to complete with their children with a goal of sparking basic online safety discussions in the home. This module takes approximately 30 minutes to complete, and provides parents with the opportunity to review their own tech use to set a good example; interactive activities to complete alongside their children; and follow-up resources and activities to keep the discussions going.    

Frequent discussions with parents about online activity have been shown to be the biggest influence on a child’s online behaviors. This e-course gives parents the opportunity to become the trusted adult in their child’s life. If the child sees something they don’t understand or that makes them uncomfortable, they know they have someone to reach out to. The e-course even provides some ideas on how to start and continue these discussions, along with some bonus tips to help break the ice on awkward topics.

You can participate in the online training by clicking here or on the image below.  

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USDA Announces Technical Assistance Webinars for the ReConnect Program

About the ReConnect Program

The ReConnect Program offers loans, grants, and loan/grant combinations to facilitate broadband deployment in areas of rural America without sufficient access to broadband.

  • The awards made under this program will bring high-speed broadband to rural areas that lack sufficient access to broadband.
  • The delivery of broadband connection and high-quality service will enable technologies critical to rural communities, such as precision agriculture.
  • The pilot program will fuel long-term economic development and opportunities in rural America.

Stakeholder Outreach

USDA Rural Development will host a series of informational webinars and workshops to provide more information on the ReConnect Program. Please visit https://reconnect.usda.gov for up-to-date information on these events.

Informational Webinar:

Wednesday, February 13, 2019 at 1:00 P.M. 

This hour-long technical assistance webinar will provide a high-level overview of the funding opportunity available under the ReConnect Program. USDA Rural Development staff will discuss types of funding available, eligibility provisions, notice of proposed service area, and evaluation factors. It will be offered twice. You may pre-register by clicking here for the February 7 webinar. The webinar link and event details will be emailed to you after registration.