April 22, 2011



Please feel free to contact me with any concerns or opinions you might have.

Office Phone: (608) 266-7505
Toll-free Phone: (800) 361-5487



Mailing Address:

State Capitol
P.O. Box 7882
Madison, WI 53707












Supporting our 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.


April 27 from 6:30 p.m. to 8:00 p.m.
Attend this community gathering organized by the Town of Lake Neighborhood Association Committee and the Garden District Neighborhood Association. The meeting will cover a combination of gardening topics including: soils, planning, plant multiplication, harvesting, and gardening tips. Light snacks and beverages will be available. RSVP by April 22nd by calling (414) 747-0708 or by CLICKING HERE. To view the flyer for this event, please CLICK HERE.


Simons Landscaping (MAP)
4121 S. 6th Street

Milwaukee, WI 53221


Crime Scene Investigations: Lake Michigan
April 29 at 8:00 p.m.
Learn about Lake Michigan's fragile ecosystem and go fishing for "bad guys" lurking offshore at this month's free Science Bag workshop. Adults and kids ages 8 and up can investigate invasive species, ballast water exchanges and pollutants from the watershed in this presentation by UWM aquatic biologists Erica Young and John Berges. CLICK HERE for additional information.


UWM Physics Building (MAP)

1900 E. Kenwood Blvd.

Room 137

Milwaukee, WI 53211



Milwaukee County Medicine Collection Day

April 30 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.

Drop off your unused prescription medication at Miller Park. Flushing these medications or pouring them down the drain pollutes our water supply. Help keep our community clean by properly disposing of these medications. Only Milwaukee County residents can participate. Please CLICK HERE for additional information.

Miller Park (MAP)

"Sausage Haus" Parking Lot

1 Brewers Way

Milwaukee, WI 53214











































































































































































Dear Friend,

Happy Earth Day! We continue to celebrate Wisconsin's environment in this week's newsletter by honoring former Wisconsin Governor and U.S. Senator Gaylord Nelson and recognizing another local business.


As usual, please feel free to contact me with any questions, concerns or opinions you may have about our community or our state.


Chris Larson
State Senator, District 7




Reflections of Earth Day

As we take time to celebrate Earth Day today, we also should remember to reflect on those who have played an important role in moving our state and nation forward on crucial environmental issues.


The first Earth Day was observed nationwide on April 22, 1970, and served as a day to increase environmental awareness. The holiday was founded by Gaylord Nelson, a former Wisconsin Governor and U.S. Senator dedicated to cleaning up polluted waterways, protecting natural resources, creating green jobs and bolstering the state's recreation infrastructure.


Gaylord Nelson's efforts helped to ensure that Wisconsin has a proud, progressive history of stewardship.


Gaylord Nelson's legacy endures. For more information about him or the history of Earth Day, please CLICK HERE.


Photo: Former Wisconsin Governor and U.S. Senator Gaylord Nelson



Spotlight: Sweet Water Organics

Sweet Water Organics is an urban farm located in the Bay View neighborhood. It has transformed and re-purposed an abandoned industrial building into a space that grows fresh, safe produce and fish for local Milwaukee-area residents, restaurants and groceries stores. Sweet Water Organics continuously strives to be a resource for job creation and improving urban settings.


Its innovative use of sustainable aquaponics makes it an important assets to our community's urban agriculture. Aquaponics is an agricultural system that saves energy and resources by simultaneously cultivating plants and aquatic animals in a symbiotic environment.


Sweet Water Organics has also established the Sweet Water Foundation, a non-profit organization dedicated to educating students on the concept of turning wastes into community resources. They address topics such as economic development, health and wellness concerns, and the STEM disciplines (science, technology, engineering and math). The education these students receive helps to prepare them for their academic futures and potential "green-collar" jobs.


For more information about Sweet Water Organics and their products, please CLICK HERE. You can also find additional information about the Sweet Water Foundation by CLICKING HERE.


Photo: Courtesy of Jeff Redmon, Associate Creative Director for Sweet Water Organics



Joint Finance Committee to Begin Budget Votes

The Joint Finance Committee has scheduled its first executive budget session for next Tuesday, April 26 at 11:00 a.m. to begin voting on items in the 2011-2013 Biennial Budget. Agencies scheduled for executive action include:


Child Abuse and Neglect Prevention Board
Department of Children and Families -- Child Support
Department of Health Services -- Care Facilities
Office of the Commissioner of Insurance
Department of Administration -- Division of Gaming
Office of State Employment Relations
Department of Revenue -- Lottery Administration
Public Defender
Judicial Council
Judicial Commission
Board of Commissioners of Public Lands
Department of Natural Resources -- Department-wide
Fox River Navigational System Authority
Lower Wisconsin State Riverway Board


Please CLICK HERE to view the public notice for the Joint Finance Committee's Executive Session.


A vote on non-fiscal budget items is also on next week's agenda. Despite past statements, Republican majority members are not expected to remove all non-fiscal provisions placed in the 2011-2013 Biennial Budget.


During the last budget cycle, Republicans constantly condemned non-fiscal items being placed in the budget, a fiscal document. Now that the Republicans have complete control of the Senate and Assembly, they have conveniently forgotten their past demands to remove all non-fiscal items from the budget.


Many of these provisions have far-reaching implications for our community and should be addressed on an individual basis by the Legislature. Some of the non-fiscal items that are anticipated to remain in the 2011-2013 Biennial Budget include:


* Repealing insurance coverage of contraceptives

* Removing protective standards to prevent pollution and contamination of our drinking water

* Reducing education opportunities by getting rid of the requirements for 180 days of instruction, reading specialists and school nurses

* Removing testing requirements for charter schools


More information about these important non-fiscal items can be found in the non-partisan Legislative Fiscal Bureau's summary of the governor's 2011-2013 Biennial Budget. To view this document, please CLICK HERE. To view other budget-related documents, CLICK HERE to visit the Legislative Fiscal Bureau's Web site.


You can also track the status of the budget by using the free bill tracker database notification service available on the Wisconsin State Legislature’s Web site homepage at




Annual Bay View Tragedy Event

Sunday, May 1 at 4 p.m.

Join me at the 125th Anniversary of the Bay View Tragedy next Sunday at the Bay View Rolling Mills state historical marker site. The event commemorates the tragedy of May 5, 1886, when the State Militia shot into a crowd of some 1,500 workers marching in an 8-hour-day rally, killing seven in front of the old Bay View Rolling Mills, then Milwaukee’s largest manufacturing plant. The Bay View Tragedy played a significant role in Wisconsin's labor movement and the struggle of Wisconsin's workers to fight for their rights and improve their employment conditions.

The program will include: a speech by UW-Green Bay Professor and author Harvey Kaye, a performance by folksinger Larry Penn, a wreath ceremony to honor the workers that were killed, and a re-enactment of the May 5, 1886 event. The Bay View Historical Society will also be holding a reception following the event at the at the Beulah Brinton House located two blocks away from the main event. CLICK HERE for additional event information.


Bay View Rolling Mills State Historical Marker Site (MAP)

Northeast Corner of South Superior and East Russell

Milwaukee, WI 53207


Beulah Brinton House (MAP)

2590 South Superior Street
Milwaukee, WI 53207




Updates on Local Road Construction

As many of you may have already noticed, winter has reached its conclusion and we are now entering the next Wisconsin season--road construction. The Wisconsin Department of Transportation (DOT) has several resources available to provide our neighbors with timely information about construction and traffic news.


To view expected daily travel times, images from traffic cameras, or Milwaukee-area lane and ramp closures, please CLICK HERE. You can also find information about work zones and detours in Southeast Wisconsin by CLICKING HERE. Finally, for on-the-go travel assistance or information contact Wisconsin Travel Info by calling 511.




Meet for Coffee

Monday, May 2 from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m.

We will have office hours open to the public at Fixx Coffee House in St. Francis. This is your chance to talk in person about any questions, concerns or opinions you might have about our community or state. No appointment necessary. Feel free to call my office for additional information. CLICK HERE to view their Web site.

Fixx Coffee House

3558 East Sivyer Avenue
St. Francis, WI 53235




Community Meetings Recap

I would like to thank everyone that attended the community meetings this past week. On Monday, April 18 our neighbors came to share their apprehension with voter ID legislation, the possible repeal of same day registration and the integrity of our election process. On Tuesday, community members attended a town hall meeting to express serious concern over the cuts proposed to vital statewide health care programs, including SeniorCare, FamilyCare, BadgerCare and Medicaid.


The thoughtful comments and questions are greatly appreciated. Hearing your perspective on issues that will have a significant impact on our community is crucial as we continue working together through this legislative session and biennial budget .




Suggestions for Summer Activities

Spring is almost over and our neighbors will soon be seeking out summer youth and family activities in our community. If you have any suggestions, please feel free to pass these along to me via phone or email so that I can share these ideas with our neighbors in future newsletters.




Notice: Spam Filters

If you stop receiving the Larson Report and did not request to unsubscribe, please contact my office to alert me of the problem. The Larson Report sometimes bounces back as a result of strict spam filters. Resultantly, these individuals are removed from the newsletter distribution list and their email addresses are marked as undeliverable. Our email server has also experienced technical difficulties on a couple of occasions due to the sheer volume of incoming and outgoing communications related to the Biennial Budget and the Budget Adjustment Bill.




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