April 29, 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.



Italian Film Festival of Milwaukee
April 29 through May 1

Enjoy the local premieres of eight recent, critically acclaimed Italian films at this year's Italian Film Festival of Milwaukee. All films are shown in Italian with English subtitles, and are free and open to the public. CLICK HERE for more information, including movie synopses and schedules.

UW-Milwaukee Union Cinema (MAP)
2200 E. Kenwood Blvd.
Milwaukee, WI 53211
(414) 229-4070


City of Cudahy's Earth and Arbor Day

April 30 from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.

Celebrate Earth Day and Arbor Day in Cudahy with a city-wide cleanup in the morning and a tree planting ceremony and presentation of the Tree City USA Award at noon. Volunteers will receive free food, tree seedlings and cleanup materials.


Cudahy City Hall (MAP)

5050 S. Lake Drive

Cudahy, WI 53110



Rain Barrels Lecture
April 30 from 10:00 a.m. to 11:30 a.m.

Learn how to conserve water and save money on your bills by adding a rain barrel to your home! Cost is $15. Call the phone number listed below to register. Please CLICK HERE for more information.


Outpost Natural Foods (MAP)

100 E. Capitol Dr.

Milwaukee, WI 53207

(414) 272-5462, ext. 105



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



Danceworks Performance Company: Stone Soup
April 30 at 7:30 p.m.
This unique event begins with a tour of Sweet Water Organics--an urban farm that grows fish and plants in a symbiotic environment and ends with a performance of the fable "Stone Soup" by the Danceworks Performance Company. "Stone Soup" tells a tale of a community coming together to create something that no one could do alone. Ticket prices range from $15 to $25. To purchase tickets by phone, call Danceworks at (414) 277-8480, ext. 6025. CLICK HERE for more information.

Sweet Water Organics (MAP)
2151 S. Robinson Avenue
Milwaukee, WI 53207
(414) 489-0425







































































Dear Friend,

Join me this weekend in remembering the 125th Anniversary of the Bay View Tragedy. We will also honor those that came before us who fought to protect the rights of Wisconsin's workers.


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




Budget Debate Continues in Joint Finance Committee

The Joint Finance Committee (JFC) met this Tuesday to begin voting on items in the 2011-2013 Biennial Budget, including non-fiscal items.


During the meeting, Sen. Lena Taylor and Rep. Tamara Grigsby offered a motion to remove the remaining non-fiscal policy items from the budget. Despite promises from Republican Co-Chairs Voss and Darling to remove non-fiscal items, this motion failed along party lines in a vote of 12-4.


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

Sen. Taylor and Rep. Grigsby also offered a motion to remove all tax and fee increases in the budget as identified by the Legislative Fiscal Bureau (LFB). Additionally, Sen. Taylor and Rep. Jen Shilling proposed a motion to take out all LFB-identified fund raids. Republican JFC Co-chair Rep. Vos refused to even allow consideration of these motions.


The recent actions of the JFC co-chairs seem to further illustrate that with their new-found power Republican Legislators have conveniently forgotten their past declarations and promises.


To Watch the JFC Public Hearing online at WisconsinEye, please CLICK HERE.


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




Audit Shows FamilyCare Vital to Disabled, Elderly in Our Community

The April 2011 Audit of FamilyCare reaffirms that this program has been crucial for our disabled and elderly populations by increasing their access to quality, long-term care.


FamilyCare has expanded from five to 53 counties, serving 28,885 Wisconsinites as of June 2010. Nearly 12,000 of these individuals live with a developmental disability, over 9,500 are physically disabled, while the other more than 7,000 are considered to be frail elderly.


The FamilyCare program allows these individuals to maintain their independence by remaining in their own homes so that they may continue being involved in their communities. Without FamilyCare, many of these individuals would be forced to move into more expensive institution care facilities, which would increase our state's financial burden.


The 2011-2013 Biennial Budget proposes placing an enrollment freeze on Medicaid programs such as FamilyCare. This change would be detrimental to our elderly and disabled neighbors who are counting on having this option available to them for their long-term care needs. It is vital that our community works together to continue fighting to protect these vulnerable populations desperately in need of long-term care service programs, including FamilyCare.


To view a copy of the April 2011 FamilyCare Audit, please CLICK HERE, or CLICK HERE to view a brief summary of the audit's results. 




Voter ID Assembly

The Assembly Committee on Election and Campaign Reform held a public hearing on Wednesday, April 27 to discuss Assembly Bill 7. This legislation would restrict voting by requiring Wisconsin voters to present valid photo identification each election.


In addition to creating additional barriers for the elderly, disabled, students, and new residents, Assembly Bill 7 would also move the date of Wisconsin's primaries, end straight-ticket voting and place greater restrictions on voting absentee.


Executive action still needs to be taken on Assembly Bill 7 before it can reach the full Assembly for a vote. The Senate has also taken action on voter ID legislation, Senate Bill 6, but significant differences remain between the Assembly and Senate versions of these bills. Senate Bill 6 has progressed to the unamendable stage in the Senate, but has yet to receive a vote on the complete bill.


CLICK HERE to view the debate of Assembly Bill 7 in the Assembly Committee on Election and Campaign Reform on WisconsinEye. You can also view a copy of this legislation by CLICKING HERE.



Annual Bay View Tragedy Event

Sunday, May 1 at 4 p.m.

Join me at the 125th Anniversary of the Bay View Tragedy this 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 afterwards 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




UW-Extension Sustainability Team Releases Report

The University of Wisconsin-Extension Sustainability Team released a report examining sustainability policies and practices around the state related to: economic development, land use, leadership, education, transportation and energy. To view this report or the accompanying executive summary in its entirety, please CLICK HERE.



Meet for Coffee in St. Francis

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 (MAP)

3558 East Sivyer Avenue
St. Francis, WI 53235




Meet for Conversation in Oak Creek

Thursday, May 5 from 2 p.m. to 4 p.m.

We will have office hours open to the public at Classic Lanes Bowling Alley in Oak Creek. 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.

Classic Lanes Bowling Alley (MAP)
7501 South Howell Avenue
Oak Creek, WI 53154



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