Room 307 West
P.O. Box 8953
Madison, WI 53708
Phone: (608) 266-5780
Toll Free: (888) 534-0095
Twelve Angry Men
Date: Feb. 13 through Mar. 1., 2:30 and 7:30 p.m.
Location: Veterans Studio Theater
La Crosse Bike Swap
Description: Come to the swap to re-home your dusty bikes, parts,
and accessories. Any bikes unsold at 2 pm must be picked up or they
will be donated to Logan Bike Works.
Date: Saturday, Feb. 28, 10 a.m. - 2 p.m.
Location: Logan Middle School
Rivers, Wisconsin is the home of the ice cream sundae. The ice cream
sundae was created in 1881, when Ed Berner, owner of a soda fountain,
topped a dish of ice cream with chocolate sauce. The name 'sundae' comes
from a spelling mistake, considering the dish was originally only served
In 1973, the State Historical Society dedicated a marker in a Two Rivers
downtown park commemorating the first ice cream sundae. Additionally,
the Two Rivers city limits marker advertises its ice cream sundae
history. Every July, the town celebrates Ice Cream Sundae Thursday.
Several other cities claim to have invented the first sundae, including:
Buffalo, NY; Ithaca, NY; Evanston, IL; and Manitowoc, WI. But Two Rivers
is the only one endorsed by the National Register of Historic Places.
Friends and Neighbors,
Welcome to my
biweekly newsletter. This week's newsletter will focus on the many new
provisions of the Wisconsin State Budget.
On February 3, Governor Walker
announced the state budget, which included a number of funding cuts to
public programs such as education, healthcare, and transportation. The
proposals were met with criticism on both sides of the aisle, as they
could bring unwelcome changes to our Wisconsin neighbors and families.
While the budget proposed by
Gov. Walker is only a proposal, it is increasingly important that
legislators work together to combat changes that could be harmful to our
working families. Now more than ever, I hope we can come together to
create commonsense solutions, repair our economy, and improve our state.
Continue reading this
week’s newsletter for more information on the state budget.
95th Assembly District
Gov. Walker's State Budget: Top 5
Last week, Governor Walker introduced the
2015-2017 state budget. The budget involved a number of
steep cuts to public programs, and some surprising new
rules. A few of the cuts – public education and higher
education – had been announced before the budget was
released, and gained a significant amount of public
Here are the top five budget provisions to note:
1) Funding for Human Trafficking Prevention
I and a number of Wisconsin legislators have been
reaching across the aisle to raise awareness to the
problem of human trafficking in our state. In this
budget, Governor Walker has proposed a $2 million
investment in the prevention of human trafficking
crimes. Human trafficking is a form of modern slavery,
and must be stopped in Wisconsin and in the United
States. I am pleased to see that the proposed budget
makes provisions to end this crime.
2) Higher Education
The UW System is a bright example of Wisconsin’s
capabilities. Year after year, it produces skilled
students, unmatched research contributions, and billions
in economic activity for the state. However, Gov. Walker
has proposed to cut UW System funding by $300 million
over the next two years. Combined with previous funding
cuts, this would result in a more-than $600 million cut
to the UW System. If this proposal were adopted, the UW
System would be at its lowest funding level in system
history. In most scenarios, the university could absorb
the drop in funding by raising tuition costs. However,
the UW System is under a tuition freeze for the next two
years. Therefore, it is likely that serious cuts will
need to be made in each UW System school to stay afloat.
In addition to cutting resources, the budget includes
giving the UW System more autonomy, by giving control of
the universities to the UW Board of Regents. This action
nullifies existing statutes pertaining to the
universities, and makes it possible for tuition to
increase significantly after the 2-year freeze.
3) Public Education
Public education would undergo a number of drastic
changes, should this budget be adopted. Not only has
Gov. Walker proposed a funding cut -- a drop in $150
per-pupil – but he has incorporated a number of
provisions that would limit local control of schools. In
the budget proposal, Walker utilized similar concepts as
were present in the controversial AB1 bill. These
concepts included creating an 11-person state-appointed
school accountability board, measuring schools’ progress
on a report card grading scale, and increasing funding
to voucher programs. The measures suggested in AB1
received negative public feedback from students,
teachers and administrators – yet Gov. Walker chose to
include the controversial proposals in his budget.
Transportation spending changed dramatically in this
proposed budget. First, Walker proposed $1.3 billion in
bonding for transportation projects, meaning that
Wisconsin would be going into further debt, borrowing
money it doesn’t have. Wisconsin is facing a $1.8
billion deficit, and yet Governor Walker keeps spending
on the state’s credit card.
Transportation proposals also include cutting $2 million
from the Transportation Alternatives Project, and
eliminating the Complete Streets program. The
Transportation Alternatives Project provides for local
communities to invest in bike and pedestrian projects
like local planning and infrastructure. Similarly, the
Complete Streets program creates safe bike and walking
paths throughout Wisconsin. These programs are necessary
for encouraging smart and safe transportation
alternatives in our state.
Over the past few months, you may have heard about
Governor Walker’s rejection of federal Medicaid dollars,
which would have saved Wisconsin an estimated $206
million over the next two years. Throughout the state
budget, and especially in health care, we can see the
effects of healthcare funding rejection. Under this
proposal, SeniorCare would be cut by $15 million -- a 40
percent cut. Additionally, seniors would be forced to
apply for Medicare part D, which would cause them to pay
out of pocket on prescription drug costs.
American Heart Month
February is the American
Heart Association’s “American Heart Month.” Heart disease is the
leading cause of death for men and women in the United States.
Every year, 1 in 4 deaths are caused by heart disease.
However, heart disease can often be prevented when people make
healthy choices and manage their health conditions. Communities,
health professionals, and families can work together to create
opportunities for people to make healthier choices.
This February, celebrate American Heart Month by spreading the
word about strategies to prevent heart disease.
On Feb. 6, Wisconsin legislators got together to raise awareness
to women and heart disease, on the American Heart Association’s
“Wear Red Day.” This day was meant to bring attention to the
growing issue of heart disease and heart-health issues in women.
To learn more about American Heart Month, and how you can raise
awareness to heart disease, visit:
Deficit Higher than Projected
End Demand in Wisconsin
Human Trafficking is the most severe form of
human exploitation, and continues to be a significant problem in
the United States, with thousands of women and children
trafficked throughout the nation -- even in Wisconsin.
Legislators in Wisconsin are fighting to raise awareness of
human trafficking, and make policy changes that will end this
grave human rights violation.
This month, you can do your part to end human trafficking as
well, with these tips from La Crosse’s own Options Clinic:
the red flags of human trafficking
Take Action: call the
National Human Trafficking Resource Center at (888) 373-7888
which is open 24/7. this center can help you connect to a
provider in your area, report potential activity, request
training, learn more and provide resources on the topic. You
could also call federal law enforcement.
Shop Smart: check out
the Department of Labor's List of Goods Produced by Child
Labor or Forced Labor and
shop smart. You could also donate or fundraise for
organizations like the Salvation Army, which has an
anti-human trafficking platform, or campaigns, like the Not
For Sale Campaign.
Spread the Word:
include information about human trafficking in your
workplace or social media.
learn about our anti-trafficking coalition or write your local, state, and
federal government representatives or newspaper letting them
know you care about stopping human trafficking.
Look for updates on my
anti- human trafficking efforts in future e-newsletter reports.