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(608)266-5780 | State Capitol, Room 307 West, P.O. Box 8953, Madison, WI 53708 |



Moon Tunes at Riverside Park
Thursday, August 27 from 6:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m.

Riverside Park (MAP)


Great River Folk Festival

Friday, August 28 through Sunday, August 30

Riverside Park (MAP)

Cameron Park Farmer's Market
Saturday, August 29 from 8:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m.
Cameron Park (MAP)


UW System Listening Session
Tuesday, September 1 from 5:00 to 6:30 p.m.

UW La Crosse Cleary Center  (MAP)



State Capitol
Room 307 West
P.O. Box 8953
Madison, WI 53708


(608) 266-5780
Toll Free:

(888) 534-0095


Friends and Neighbors,

With the weather changing and our kids getting ready to go back-to-school, it looks like summer is coming to a close. The seasonal celebrations aren't quite over in Wisconsin and La Crosse has a few exciting festivals in store for the last weeks of summer. Check the events calendar in this newsletter to see what you and your families can do in the region!

Continue reading this week's newsletter for exciting summer events, national remembrances, and news from the Capitol!


Best Wishes,

Jill Billings
State Representative
95th Assembly District






Last week marked the anniversary of the passage of the 19th amendment -- the amendment which guaranteed women the right to vote. 95 years ago, movers and shakers in the women's equality movement -- such as Carrie Chapman Catt, Susan B. Anthony, and Elizabeth Cady Stanton -- fought for the women's right to vote. Women's equality day was celebrated this week on August 26 to celebrate this momentous occasion.

An interesting fact about the 19th amendment is that Wisconsin was the first state to ratify it in 1919, approximately one year before it became an official amendment! Wisconsin has -- for most of its history -- been a champion of voters' and workers' rights. While our state, and the rest of the nation, still have a long way to go in protecting voter rights and ensuring equal rights for women, I am proud to represent a state that made such an historically bold decision so many years ago.






This year's Labor Day falls on September 7. Labor Day is meant to recognize the contributions made by workers every year in our country and state. Wisconsin has a proud history of supporting worker's rights, and was actually the first state to support a labor union -- Local 125 in Milwaukee. It is also the first state to pass worker's compensation laws, and one of the first to pass collective bargaining laws.

Celebrate Labor Day this year by attending one of the region's commemorative events:

Labor Day Bicycle Festival

Friday, September 4 through Monday, September 7

All rides leave from Cameron Park. For more information on daily events, visit

Labor Day Parade -- Celebration at Copeland Park

Monday, September 7

Celebration starts at 10:00 a.m. with a parade starting at Kane Street and ending at Copeland Park.






After irresponsible budget decisions, the DNR is now under orders to sell approximately 10,000 acres of state natural land. Some of the land sale decisions were perfunctory; however the most recent is shocking to ecologists and Wisconsin's large population of avid anglers.

One of the land parcels being sold is a few properties in Langlade County that contain ponds sustaining the brook trout population. Sales of this land could result in ecologically significant changes to the Wisconsinís brook trout habitat.

Should this deal pass, it would greatly devalue Wisconsin's angling landscape, as well as potentially hurt a native species.




Youíve all heard the old adage, "if it ainít broke, donít fix it." This saying applies greatly to a topic being debated in our state right now -- the value of the Governmental Accountability Board.

For months, Republican legislators have been targeting the GAB, saying that it requires major overhauls, and even suggesting dismantling the important election-accountability department. Gov. Walker stated in July that he wanted to dismantle the board entirely and implement, "something completely new that is truly accountable to the people of the state of Wisconsin."

During the budget process, Republican lawmakers attempted to gut the state's Open Records law. They recently announced plans to repeal John Doe law, and are now going after the state's nonpartisan accountability board. Limiting transparency and accountability are a common thread in all of these choices.

A recent audit of the Government Accountability Board showed the department conducting its investigations in an appropriate way. Our state should be bolstering the GAB in its attempts to ensure an open and transparent government, not attempting to hinder its helpful work for our state.







Last week, Senator Tammy Baldwin came to visit La Crosse to plan for her federal Waterfront Revitalization and Restoration proposal.

I attended the International River Symposium in La Crosse this year, and am pictured here with National Geographic Environmentalist and opening speaker Chad Pregracke! The event was previously held in Beijing, China.





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