May 14th Now Hmong-Lao Veterans Day in Wisconsin

This week my proposal to create Hmong-Lao Veterans Day was signed into law. This legislation recognizes and honors the extraordinary sacrifices of Hmong and Lao who fought alongside the United States during the Vietnam War. The bill designates May 14th – the anniversary of the last airlift of Hmong and Lao veterans out of Laos in 1975 – as Hmong-Lao Veterans Day. The bill also encourages schools across Wisconsin to observe the date and discuss the important sacrifices of Hmong-Lao veterans with students.

Throughout the Vietnam War, the United States worked in cooperation with thousands of ethnic Hmong to fight against the North Vietnamese and Laotian communist forces in what is referred to as the “Secret War” in Laos. Recruited by the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA), their primary endeavors were to disrupt the supply chain of munitions and North Vietnamese soldiers along the Ho Chi Minh Trail, help to protect and defend strategic points such as communication towers and radar stations, and to retrieve American fighter pilots shot down behind enemy lines. These Hmong soldiers fought valiantly during this covert war to help aid and assist the American effort of preventing communism from spreading deeper into Southeast Asia. They fought on the ground, flew combat missions, directed air strikes, and gathered valuable enemy surveillance that they shared with the American forces.

I am glad to say that going forward all Wisconsinites will honor the sacrifice of Hmong and Lao veterans every May 14th.


Session Update

The State Assembly also passed a series of bills that  work towards curbing elder abuse crimes. Unfortunately, elder abuse crimes have been growing in frequency in recent years - particularly various forms of financial exploitation. 

Senate Bill 17 increases criminal penalties for crimes against the elderly.

Assembly Bill 45 would allow financial professionals to inform law enforcement and family of suspected cases of elder financial exploitation.

Assembly Bill 46 works in concert with AB 45 by allowing financial professionals to temporarily delay transactions in suspected cases of financial exploitation while law enforcement and family are notified of the issue to determine whether or not some type of fraud is occurring. 

Protecting our most vulnerable citizens from exploitation – financial or otherwise – is one of my most important duties as a public official. I am proud to support these important bills that will help all our seniors and their families retain peace of mind.


Budget Update

This week the Legislature took additional action on the State Budget. The Joint Finance Committee (JFC) voted to:

  • Increase by $10 million funds to Veteran Nursing Homes
  • Increase funding by $200,000 for veteran suicide prevention efforts

I will continue to provide updates throughout the budget process. Please never hesitate to reach out regarding your thoughts on the state budget. 


COVID-19 Vaccine Update

All Wisconsinites age 16 and over are eligible for COVID-19 vaccines. However be aware that, some areas of the state may have a higher demand for vaccinations and may have waitlists. Vaccine providers will prioritize anyone previously eligible such as public-facing essential workers and people with medical conditions.

The Marathon County Community Vaccine Clinic at Northcentral Technical College's Center for Business and Industry is still operating from 11 am to 7 pm, Monday through Saturday. To make an appointment, please use the WI COVID-19 registry.



2019-2020 Blue Books & maps (paper highway maps or laminated maps) are still available in my office! The Wisconsin Blue Book contains information on all things Wisconsin, including census information, state history, official state symbols, and everything about Wisconsin government! Contact me for your free copy today!