Please feel free to contact me with any concerns or opinions you might
Office Phone: (608) 266-7505
Toll-free Phone: (800) 361-5487
P.O. Box 7882
Madison, WI 53707
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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.
Milwaukee Holiday Lights Festival
Date: November 17 through January 1
Description: This six-week festival will spread holiday spirit
with animated light displays in Cathedral Square Park, Pere Marquette
Park, and Zeidler Union Square, as well as hundreds of events. Marvel at
the spectacular sights aboard the convenient Jingle Bus, a Coach U.S.A.
bus that takes visitors on a 40-minute tour. For $1 per person, visitors
can relish in the holiday spirit while admiring a festive panorama. The
tour is narrated by Milwaukee Downtown's Public Service Ambassadors who
will acquaint riders with key attractions and landmarks. Tours operate
Thursdays through Sundays from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. from the Shops of Grand
CLICK HERE to learn more.
Milwaukee Winter Farmers Market
Date: Now through April 8, 2017
Description: Formerly known as the "Milwaukee County Winter
Famers Market," the "Milwaukee Winter Famers Market" takes place from 9
a.m. to 1 p.m. each Saturday in the Greenhouse Annex at the Mitchell
Park Domes. In its 8th year, the almost 50 weekly vendors gather each
Saturday to promote fresh, local food, varying from fruit and
vegetables, to various meats and poultry, to freshly baked goods, to our
CLICK HERE for more information.
Mitchell Park Horticultural Conservatory
524 S. Layton Blvd.
Milwaukee, WI 53215
Milwaukee Gingerbread House Display
Date: December 2, 2016 through December 15, 2016
Description: At the Milwaukee Public Market, enjoy more than 40
elaborate and decorative gingerbread houses created and designed by
Milwaukee Area Technical College students. The houses will be judged by
industry professionals; however, visitors have the chance to bid on
houses and vote for a "people's choice" scholarship winner, with the
award ceremony taking place on December 15 at 6 p.m. You may attend the
display during the Milwaukee Public Market's regular hours.
See this Milwaukee Journal Sentinel article for more information.
Milwaukee Public Market
400 N. Water St.
Milwaukee, WI 53202
A Christmas Carol
Date: November 29, 2016 through December 24, 2016
Description: The Milwaukee Repertory Theater presents a brand new
version of A Christmas Carol, the famous Milwaukee family tradition for
over 40 years. This new version features the same traditional story,
with the same characters with a family friendly adaptation written by
Rep Artistic Director, Mark Clements. This is a perfect opportunity to
relax and get into the Christmas Spirit as the cast brings you on a
journey through Christmas Past, Present, and Future.
CLICK HERE for more information, including how to purchase tickets.
Milwaukee Repertory Theater
108 E. Wells St.
Milwaukee, WI 53202
Bay View Annual
Tree Lighting with Santa's Arrival
5 at 6:30 p.m.
Enjoy Christmas carols by St. Thomas More High School Choir and an
outdoor sing-a-long with children, family, and guests at this annual
event! Tree lighting with Santa's Arrival is at 7 p.m. This event is
free and open to anyone.
1023 E Russell Ave
Milwaukee, WI 53207
Christmas in the
Date: Friday, December 2 from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. and Saturday,
December from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.
Description: The 28th annual Christmas in the Ward takes place on
the 2nd and 3rd of December this year. With events ranging from musical
performances to the opportunity to meet Santa, Mrs. Claus, and their
reindeer, this old fashioned Christmas celebration is one that you will
not want to miss out on.
CLICK HERE for a schedule of events.
147 N. Broadway
Milwaukee, WI 53202
Date: December 3, 2016
Location: St. Francis
Description: Enjoy the annual parade, with Santa and his elves
making their own appearance this Saturday! St. Francis/Cudahy Project
concern food pantry will also be accepting non-perishable food items
along the parade route. After the parade, head over to the St. Francis
Civic Center to ring in the Holidays with refreshments and a chance to
meet Santa, along with the lighting of the tree.
CLICK HERE for more information, including the parade route.
St. Francis Civic Center
3400 E. Howard Ave.
Saint Francis, WI 53235
Santa Hustle Milwaukee 5k
Date: December 3 at Noon
Description: Run or walk with hundreds of other Santa's through
Veterans Park this Saturday at 12 p.m.! All participants will receive a
free Santa hat and hooded dri-fit long sleeve event shirt. Make sure to
stop along the course as there will be stops for candy, cookies, festive
music, and much more.
CLICK HERE to register for this event.
1010 N. Lincoln
Milwaukee, WI 53202
December 19 from 4:00-6:30 p.m.
Join the Milwaukee Jewish Federation for their FREE community-wide
Hanukkah Celebration! It's fun for all ages with plenty of food and
activities including building a giant Lego Menorah! All members of the
community are welcome at this event, which this year is being hosted by
the Harry & Rose Samson Family Jewish Community Center.
CLICK HERE for more information.
Harry & Rose Samson
Family Jewish Community Center
6255 N Santa Monica
Whitefish Bay, WI
Dear Wisconsin Neighbor,
I hope you had a great Thanksgiving
and had some time to relax and enjoy catching up with family and
Like many, I am starting to think about the New Year and ways to start
2017 off fresh. I spent some time over the holiday going through old
electronics that my family no longer needs. I know I'm not the only one
thinking about opportunities to reuse and recycle items lying around the
house, therefore, below you will find information on how to properly
dispose of unwanted electronics.
Additionally, I wanted to take an opportunity to update you on important
-- likely detrimental-- health care changes being discussed by our
president-elect and some Wisconsin Republicans.
State Senator, District 7
"BadgerCare provided needed
coverage for my friend following a job layoff. His wife did not have
access to insurance through her employer. Shortly thereafter, he found
another job that provided benefits for their family."
My neighbor, Mary, wrote this to me a
couple years ago when she asked me to support strengthening Wisconsin's
Medicaid program, known as BadgerCare. Here in Wisconsin, we look out
for our neighbors. We want to see them succeed and live a life full of
freedom and opportunity. I know that's what Mary wanted for her neighbor
when he was laid off from work and needed health care coverage.
uncertain economic times, we are all better protected if we have access
to health care despite income or employment status. The majority of our
neighbors agree. In fact, in November 2014, voters in 19 counties across
the state asked Governor Walker and the Republican Legislature to accept
available federal funds to strengthen our BadgerCare program.
Read more about the November 2014 referendum, here.
Having programs like BadgerCare
benefits everyone, not just those directly receiving services. Ensuring
health care access for each of our neighbors, regardless of their
income, is important as it keeps them from being uninsured and ending up
going to costly emergency rooms for their care or forgoing treatment
until an illness becomes a chronic condition. This keeps others from
absorbing inflated costs and helps to keep all health care costs down.
as we start to find out the president-elect's cabinet picks, neighbors
across the country are filling with fear about how the new
administration will negatively impact their quality of life. These are
very real fears, as President-elect Trump and other Republican leaders,
including Wisconsin's own Paul Ryan, are already scheming to dismantle
the successful, 50-year-old Medicaid program.
Read this Milwaukee Journal Sentinel article about the
Republican push to dismantle our health care programs.
Block Grants: A Betrayal of Our
The state-federal Medicaid program covers one-in-five of our neighbors
at any given moment. The Republican plan ends Medicaid as we know it and
irresponsibly threatens access to basic health care services, abandoning
you or your loved ones when you need it most. This is not only an issue
of moral responsibility, but an economic one as well. In order to have a
prosperous economy, we must have a healthy, productive workforce. This
opportunity is under threat by the GOP's schemes.
As you may know, some of our
federal tax dollars are returned to states in order to help fund public
services like education, law enforcement, and health care.
decades, Republicans have been intent on changing the way funds are
distributed from the federal government to states, specifically for
lifesaving programs such as Medicaid, Medicare, and food assistance
(Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, or SNAP). Trump, Walker,
Ryan and others are pushing to move us away from years of thoughtfully
crafted categorical grants to dangerously ambiguous block grants.
Block grants, in general terms, are lumps of funds given to a state with
a broad scope and little oversight.
This proposal is out-of-touch and
comes with many drawbacks. For instance, the funding for BadgerCare
would no longer be carefully connected to the actual cost of providing
health care or how many individuals are in need of care through the
program. Therefore, if the cost to cover individuals exceeds the amount
given through the grant (which can be due to a variety of factors, like
an economic recession, dwindling number of employers offering health
care plans, or a natural disaster) the state (we) would have to pick up the
tab or be forced to cut or deny people in need from the program.
Further, the Republican funding choice would likely result in a
reduction in the amount states receive back from the federal government. That
said, even if Wisconsin leaders want to continue it's commitment to
ensuring coverage for kids, seniors, and our neighbors with
disabilities, the state would be forced to raise taxes or drastically
cut services. For these reasons, according to a report released by the
Commonwealth Fund, a switch to fixed-funding block grants would likely
result in reduced eligibility and anemic benefits.
The advantage of using our current
funding method is that the state and federal government can work
together to thoughtfully invest in the health and wellbeing of our
neighbors and balances needed checks with state-to-state flexibility. On
the other hand, no matter which way you slice it, Republicans are
advocating for health care to be taken away from many of our neighbors,
and they want you to look the other way.
be clear, block grant funding is not a new bad idea. Instead, it is a
tired method of kicking people off of the program and/or cut
the critical services people need to remain healthy. States already have
significant flexibility in how they run their Medicaid programs in areas
like service coverage, reimbursement to health care providers, and
eligibility. In fact, it's that very flexibility that has traditionally
helped make our own BadgerCare program a national model.
Throwing some pocket change at states, rather than making wise
investments in the health of our neighbors is irresponsible and goes
against Wisconsin's proud tradition of expanding access to high-quality
health care. We all do better when we all do better and being our
healthiest self is an important part of the equation.
Chipping away at programs that have been proven to effectively and
efficiently help our neighbors in need is a betrayal of our Wisconsin
values. I am committed to doing all I can to ensure programs that
Wisconsin families depend on remain strong.
For more information about Medicaid block grants and why they are
back for families, see this FamiliesUSA fact sheet.
Community Event to Discuss
Health Care Changes
As changes to our vital health care programs continue to be
discussed, I will keep you updated via Facebook and the newsletter. I
also want to let you know about an important event coming up that is
being hosted by Citizen Action of Wisconsin. Join them for a discussion
on what the Trump administration is able to do to change the Affordable
Care Act, Medicaid, and Medicare and how it will impact our families.
Details for the event are below.
From ObamaCare to TrumpCare:
How Bad Can It Get?
Date: December 06, 2016, from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m.
2537 W National Ave
Milwaukee, WI 53204
CLICK HERE for more information.
the New Year quickly approaching, there are plenty of opportunities to
start fresh by reducing, reusing, and recycling unwanted electronics.
As electronics become more and more advanced, it is important to be
cognizant of how we can properly rid ourselves of unwanted pieces of
technology. By recycling our electronics, we are able to protect our
environment, conserve valuable raw materials, and save space in our
If you are looking for more information on which items cannot be put
into the trash, or sent to landfills or incinerators, click here to view
a brochure from E-Cycle Wisconsin.
My office also has physical copies of this brochure available. If you
would like a copy, please email your name and address to:
Listed below are a few of the resources and locations throughout our
community that will accept those unwanted electronic items you may be
looking to get rid of!
Elite Energy Distribution
Address: 1000 W Bruce St, Milwaukee, WI
Phone: (866) 461-8216
Accepts: Cell phones, computers and computer accessories (mice,
keyboards, external hard drives, etc.), copiers, fax machines, printers,
scanners, TVs, etc.
Self-Help Recycling Centers in Milwaukee**
Address: 6660 N Industrial Rd & 3879 W Lincoln Ave, Milwaukee, WI
Phone: (414) 286-2489
Accepts: Cell phones, computers and computer accessories (mice, external
hard drives, speakers, flash drives, external modems and routers), fax
machines, printers, scanners, TVís (maximum of 3), etc.
**Must provide proof of city of Milwaukee residency
Most electronic recycling locations that dispose of computers also
provide data destruction services. Just deleting files from your desktop
will not clear them from your computer, so to protect your information,
it is in your best interest to destroy your data. When recycling
computers, tablets, printers, and other electronics, be sure to ask your
recycler about their data destruction practices. Most follow the trusted
standards and methods for data destruction provided by the U.S.
Department of Defense.
week, the Larson Report strives to provide up-to-date, in-depth
information to its readers. Between editions, a lot happens in Madison
and in our Wisconsin communities. I want to make sure you know the most
pressing issues facing our neighborhoods across the state. Below are
some of the top stories from the past couple of weeks:
- The holidays are an important
time to become more aware of the drinking and driving habits in
Wisconsin, as almost 40% of individuals who drink consume more
alcohol during the holiday season.
Recently, Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD) released their
yearly report of state drunk driving ratings. Unfortunately, because
the party in power has neglected to move forward on implementing
effective laws to curb drunk driving Wisconsin is rated with just
two out of five stars. This rating reflects that our roads are
more dangerous for our friends and neighbors to travel on. MADD
notes that improving our state's ignition interlock device (IID)
laws would vastly improve our rating. Last session, I introduced the
Drunk Driving Prevention Act, which would have required all drivers
convicted of an OWI to install an IID.
Read this Facebook post for more.
- Last week, a court ruled
Republican legislative maps unconstitutional, affirming their abuse
of power as going too far in shutting out our neighbors' voices in
Attempts to suppress the public's voice by politically
gerrymandering districts in order to weaken the voting power of
targeted groups is a betrayal of our fundamental freedoms and
See my Facebook post about this topic.
- New parking regulations
will soon be going into effect soon for the Bay View area. A
neighborhood meeting on this topic will be held at 6 p.m. on
Thursday, January 19, 2017, at the South Shore Pavilion.
See Alderman Tony Zielinki's video, here, for more information.
- With the National Security
Agency and Department of Homeland Security both concluding that the
Russian government was responsible for maliciously hacking the
Democratic National Committee, and that Russian hackers attacked
U.S. voter registration information data, many of our Wisconsin
neighbors have growing concerns over the results of the recent
presidential election. A desire to confirm the integrity of our
elections has prompted Presidential candidate Jill Stein to file and
pay for a recount in Wisconsin.
See this Facebook post for more on this, including ways we can
ensure our votes are being counted properly.
- It should come as no
surprise that Walker's administration is continuing their dismal
record of dangerously neglecting their responsibility to protect our
shared, public lands and waters. The latest news from the
Department of Natural Resources (DNR), however, should alarm every
hunter, angler, conservationist, and outdoor enthusiast across our
state. The DNR recently unveiled a scheme to eliminate the Bureau of
Science, thereby burying the work of the few remaining scientists.
Many of you probably remember that we've already seen Walker and his
out-of-touch friends in the Legislature eliminate half of the
research and science positions last session. We simply cannot afford
to continue the stifling and killing of research on habitat loss,
wildlife diseases, pollution, the effects of climate change, and the
growing dangers to our shared water.
this Wisconsin State Journal article for more.