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End Abuse Releases Annual Wisconsin Domestic Violence Homicide Report PDF Print E-mail
Written by End Domestic Abuse WI, Elise Buchbinder   
Thursday, 17 September 2020 08:34

domestic-violenceReport includes 2019 Homicides and a Review of 20 Years of Data.

More Than $36 million for Public Infrastructure and Facility Projects Announced PDF Print E-mail
Written by GOV Press Wisconsin   
Thursday, 17 September 2020 08:20

road-potholesFunding will go for 42 public infrastructure and facility projects across Wisconsin.

MADISON — Gov. Tony Evers, with Wisconsin Department of Administration (DOA) Secretary Joel Brennan, today announced more than $36 million in funding for 42 public infrastructure and facility projects across Wisconsin. The funding is awarded to local units of government as part of a competitive grant process for the 2020 Community Development Block Grants for Public Facilities (CDBG-PF) program.

tony-evers“This funding is not only critical to public safety, but to improving Wisconsin communities across our state where folks enjoy living, working, learning, and recreating,” said Gov. Evers. “These 42 projects will benefit Wisconsinites from Antigo to Whitehall and will bolster our communities.”

“Investing in core infrastructure services ensures Wisconsinites can remain proud of the communities in which they live, work and raise families, as well as maintain a positive and healthy quality of life,” said DOA Secretary Brennan.

The grants will be used by local governments to assist with infrastructure and facility projects totaling more than $72 million. The projects include but are not limited to water, stormwater, and sanitary sewer improvements and replacement activities, as well as sidewalk and surface street projects, and blight elimination activities. 

Administered through the DOA Division of Energy, Housing and Community Resources, CDBG-PF grants are open to all units of general and local governments that do not receive CDBG awards directly through the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD). CDBG-PF grants have the programmatic goals of:

  • ensuring the affordability of basic services that enhance community vitality;
  • supporting the revitalization of established neighborhoods, downtown business districts, and blighted sites;
  • assisting with capital improvement projects that support previous planning efforts and are part of broader community development strategies;
  • improving the accessibility of public facilities; and
  • encouraging the use of energy-efficient design, retrofitting, and equipment, as well as projects that benefit bicyclists and pedestrians.

More information regarding CDBG-PF grants is available here. A list of 2020 CDBG-PF awardees, grant amounts, and total project costs is available here.

Gov. Evers Grants Nine More Pardons PDF Print E-mail
Written by GOV Press Wisconsin   
Wednesday, 16 September 2020 14:36

jailedPardons provide a second chance and new opportunities to better their communities for people who earn them.

MADISON – Gov. Tony Evers granted pardons this week to nine individuals. The Governor’s Pardon Advisory Board heard from applicants virtually on August 18, 2020. Applicants who the Board recommended for pardon were forwarded to Gov. Evers for final consideration. The governor has now granted pardons to 65 individuals.

tony-evers“I believe in equal justice for all Wisconsinites and the positive impact pardons can have on our criminal justice system and communities,” Gov. Evers said. “During these unprecedented times, it gives me hope knowing that those receiving pardons are getting a second chance and new opportunities to better their communities.”  

Gov. Evers granted pardons to the following people:

  • Patrick Dell, now 45, was 19 when he was caught selling marijuana. He now owns his own business in Wausau, where he lives with his family.
  • Larry Fayerweather, now 55, was 19 when he cashed forged checks that he stole from a family friend. He is now married with children and grandchildren. He is eager to hunt with his grandkids. He now lives in Canon City, Colorado.
  • Matthew Brunner, now 34, was 21 years old when he was caught dealing marijuana. He works as an electrical systems technician in the Green Bay area, where he lives with his wife and two children.
  • Markeila McCarter, now 45, was 21 when she used someone else’s credit card at a department store. She now has two daughters and lives in Kankakee, Illinois, and works as a nurse health aide. She hopes to work in childcare, which was not possible previously given her conviction.
  • Kimberly Schillo, now 50, wrote worthless checks over 25 years ago. She works as an administrative assistant to support her children and lives in Milwaukee.
  • Tonya Miller, now 51,was a young mother when she struck her daughter as punishment nearly 26 years ago. She has since taken parenting classes and gotten an education. She lives in Chicago, Illinois.
  • Jesse Gleason, now 30, was 19 when he was caught selling cocaine. He has since become a welder. He lives in Schofield with his wife and child.
  • Brady Gibney, now 27, was 17 when he broke into  a gas station and stole cigarettes. He has since obtained a bachelor’s degree and works in the manufacturing sector. He lives in Delavan.
  • Richard Walker, now 33, was 19 when he got into a fight with another young man. He lives in Burnett with his wife and children.

The Wisconsin Constitution grants the governor the power to pardon individuals convicted of a crime. A pardon is an official act of forgiveness that restores some of the rights that are lost when someone is convicted of a felony, including the right to serve on a jury, hold public office, and hold certain professional licenses. A pardon does not result in an expungement.

Under Executive Order #30, individuals convicted of a Wisconsin felony may apply for a pardon if they completed their sentence at least five years ago and have not committed any new crimes. Individuals currently required to register on the sex offender registry are ineligible for a pardon.  

The pardon application and instructions for applying are located on the Governor’s website:

The Governor’s Pardon Advisory Board will continue to meet virtually monthly and will be reconvening again on September 15, 2020, at 8 a.m. live here.

Housing Crisis in a Pandemic PDF Print E-mail
Written by Jeff Smith, State Senator District 31   
Wednesday, 16 September 2020 09:41

eviction-noticeSen. Smith writes about the resources currently available to Wisconsinites to cover mortgage or rental costs, including those recommended by the Treasurers’ Homeowners Task Force, the CDC eviction moratorium and the Wisconsin Rental Assistance Program.

Last Updated on Wednesday, 16 September 2020 10:08
Officials Encourage Wisconsinites Who Lost Health Insurance Anytime this Year to Enroll PDF Print E-mail
Written by GOV Press Wisconsin   
Tuesday, 15 September 2020 13:59

healthcare-family-drAffordable healthcare is key to living a healthy life and that is no more true than during this COVID-19 pandemic.

$8 Million TRAVEL Grants Program Helps Tourism Industry PDF Print E-mail
Written by GOV Press Wisconsin   
Tuesday, 15 September 2020 13:39

wakeboardingGrant application period open for tourism promotion and development organizations to support tourism operations, marketing impacted by COVID-19

Fauci disagrees with Trump that US rounding 'final turn' on pandemic PDF Print E-mail
Written by The Hill Press   
Saturday, 12 September 2020 15:42

trump-fauci-200323-abcnewsIf Americans aren't careful, the pandemic could worsen says Fauci, head of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases.

Evers Announces Judicial Panel Selections for the People's Maps Commission PDF Print E-mail
Written by GOV Press Wisconsin   
Friday, 11 September 2020 14:38

voting-2020Commission public hearing schedule announced, to hold first public hearing in October.

MADISON — Gov. Tony Evers announced on Thursday the members who will serve on the People's Maps Commission, a nonpartisan redistricting commission charged with drawing fair, impartial maps based on 2020 U.S. Census data. In January, the governor signed Executive Order #66 creating the Commission following his 2020 State of the State Address.

tony-evers“When elected officials are able to ignore the people they represent time and time again, something’s wrong, folks,” said Gov. Evers. “I am grateful for Justice Geske, Judge Troy, and Judge Higginbotham who have selected a diverse, talented, and energetic group of folks who are going to lead the way on fair maps for Wisconsin. These nine Wisconsinites have stepped up to serve their neighbors and communities across our state. They won’t answer to any elected officials, candidates, or political parties—they're going to be listening to people in every corner of our state to ensure Wisconsin’s next maps will truly belong to the people, not politicians.”

Fifty-four of Wisconsin's 72 counties encompassing more than 80 percent of Wisconsin's population have passed resolutions or referenda supporting nonpartisan redistricting. According to a Marquette University Law School Poll, more than 70 percent of Wisconsinites prefer a nonpartisan commission conduct redistricting. Although nonpartisan redistricting proposals have been introduced in the Legislature for several legislative biennia – and have even received bipartisan support – none of those proposals have passed the Republican-controlled Legislature. The governor’s proposed 2019-21 biennial budget included a nonpartisan redistricting proposal that was ultimately removed by Republicans during the Joint Finance Committee process.

In July, Gov. Evers announced the application process to serve on the Commission and that a panel of three retired judges—Justice Janine Geske, Judge Joseph Troy, and Judge Paul Higginbotham—would review and select commission members to ensure fairness and impartiality in the application process. The nine commission members were selected from a pool of 270 eligible applicants. Under Executive Order #66, commission members cannot be lobbyists, political candidates, state or local officials, or officers or members of the governing body of a political party.

The Commission will hold at least eight hearings across the state to listen to experts and Wisconsinites alike regarding redistricting, why it matters, and how it works. Following the release of data from of the 2020 U.S. Census, the Commission will use the information gathered during the public hearing process to prepare maps for the Legislature’s consideration. It will be up to the Legislature to take up and pass the maps created by The People’s Maps Commission. Selected members of the People’s Maps Commission are:

  • Elizabeth Tobias, of Racine, will represent the 1st Congressional District. Tobias is the executive assistant to the Board of Education for the Racine Unified School District. Tobias is a member of the Wisconsin Association of School Superintendents and the American Society of Administrative Professionals; 

  • Ruben Anthony, Jr., of Middleton, will represent the 2nd Congressional District. Anthony is the current President and CEO of the Urban League of Greater Madison and previously served the Wisconsin Department of Transportation under both Democratic and Republican administrations;

  • Annemarie McClellan, of Menomonie, will be representing the 3rd Congressional District. McClellan is currently enjoying her retirement after a career in manufacturing and clinical research. She is currently the Co-President of her local chapter of the League of Women Voters and has served as a poll worker and election observer;

  • Christopher Ford, of Whitefish Bay, will represent the 4th Congressional District. Ford is an emergency physician serving one of the one of the highest COVID-19 prevalence populations in the state. He is a member of the American Board of Emergency Medicine, Emergency Medicine Residents Association, and an advisory board member of the Wisconsin Emergency Medical Services for Children;

  • Benjamin Rangel, of Milwaukee, will represent the 4th Congressional District. Rangel is a high school teacher in Milwaukee, teaching government and history. He is the managing editor of Bridge the City and previously worked as a development coordinator for City Year Milwaukee AmeriCorps;

  • Susan Ranft, of Wauwatosa, will represent the 5th Congressional District. Ranft is the Vice President, Global Human Resources for Manpower Group, previously served as the President and member of the Governance Board of the Wauwatosa STEM Elementary School, and is an active member of TEMPO Milwaukee;

  • Melissa Prentice, of Sheboygan, will represent the 6th Congressional District. She is a librarian and public services manager for the city of Sheboygan at Mead Public Library. Prentice has been involved with the Wisconsin Library Association, her local chapter of the League of Women Voters, and was the library representative for the city of Sheboygan DIEB initiative working on diversity and inclusion;

  • Jason Bisonette, of Hayward, will represent the 7th Congressional District. Bisonette is the Dean of Students for a small K-12 tribal school on the Lac Courte Oreilles Ojibwe reservation and the Board Chair for the Lac Courte Oreilles Ojibwe College; and

  • Anthony Phillips, of Appleton, will represent the 8th Congressional District. Phillips is a physician with Theda Care Hematology and Oncology and has been involved with several grassroots organizations working on election and campaign issues, including Fair Maps Wisconsin and Voters First WI.

Due to COVID-19, the People's Maps Commission will host virtual public hearings for each of Wisconsin's congressional districts. Agendas and additional details will be announced in advance of meeting dates. The hearing dates are as follows:

  • Thursday, October 1, 2020, 8th Congressional District
  • Thursday, October 29, 2020, 5th Congressional District
  • Thursday, November 19, 2020, 3rd Congressional District
  • Wednesday, December 9, 2020, 4th Congressional District
  • January hearing date TBD, 7th Congressional District
  • February hearing date TBD, 1st Congressional District
  • March hearing date TBD, 6th Congressional District
  • April hearing date TBD, 2nd Congressional District

Additional information on The People's Maps Commission, the application and selection process, and general resources on redistricting are available here.

Last Updated on Saturday, 12 September 2020 16:04
$18 Million in Public Transit Grants for Wisconsin Communities PDF Print E-mail
Written by GOV Press Wisconsin   
Friday, 11 September 2020 13:55

evers-in-gb-2019Grants will enable Beloit, Wausau, Sheboygan, Madison, Eau Claire, Racine, Green Bay, and La Crosse to purchase a total of 34 public transit buses.

G.I. Bill Is Great For Veterans, America, But Not Enough PDF Print E-mail
Written by Palzewicz for Wisconsin, Chelsea Cross   
Friday, 11 September 2020 13:19

veteran-va-hospitalThe VA healthcare system has been continuously cut back by Republicans who want to privatize that system.

Brookfield, WI – It's one of the programs that has always paid huge dividends.  The G.I. Bill of Rights, an educational grant and a first time home buyer benefit for military veterans, has given opportunity to millions and contributed to the American economy. Democrat Tom Palzewicz, running for the Fifth Congressional District seat, is a classic case in point.

Upon returning home from a six-year hitch in the U.S. Navy, Palzewicz got his degree from the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee.  That led to a career in banking, followed by a career as a business consultant. When he and wife, Terri, bought their first home, it was the G.I. Bill that made that a possibility.

vets-gi-bill“The educational access was essential to my getting established professionally,” said Palzewicz. “We would not have been able to buy our first home without the G.I. Bill. Terri and I would not have been able to afford the down-payment alone, but it was basically no money down. When you help veterans with college, they will repay that grant thousands of times over. It's a very good risk.”

While many will agree with the basics of the G.I. Bill, what is not necessarily thought about is healthcare for returning veterans. Palzewicz believes all returning veterans should have access to mental healthcare.

“The VA healthcare system has been continuously cut back,” said Palzewicz.   “The reason behind this action is that Republicans want to privatize that system.  In 2014 President Obama signed a reform bill to give the Department of Veterans Affairs the necessary resources they need to care for our men and women in uniform.  Obama made the move to hold people accountable for misconduct and reached out to more than 200,000 vets, who were on wait lists and did not have immediate access to care.”

tom-palzewiczPalzewicz stresses the need to take care of veterans and advocates for providing the requisite funding to the VA to ensure the programs are carried out.  He also sees the need to develop a universal healthcare plan to ensure that veterans are covered, as well as the general public.

“I think of universal healthcare as Medicare for all and that would mean our veterans are covered,” said Palzewicz. “ We need to build a better healthcare system. Once we have universal healthcare, which will benefit everybody, we no longer need to have a separate veteran's healthcare system. We no longer have to have a separate Medicare system or Medicaid system or Badger care.  It is straight forward, everybody is covered.

“From a financial standpoint, by just covering everyone, we can also save a lot of money which would otherwise go to funding all these separate agencies.  We put that money into paying for the coverage.  We can streamline the system, while ensuring quality care and save money in the process.”

Palzewicz understands the needs of returning vets and the necessity of their having access to specialized healthcare.  He would rather the focus be on fulfilling  those needs and not on the bureaucracy of multiple agencies duplicating effort.

Last Updated on Saturday, 12 September 2020 13:47
Wisconsin Voices Continue to Hold Trump Accountable PDF Print E-mail
Written by WisDems Press, Philip Shulman   
Friday, 11 September 2020 09:53

trump-golf-2020Wisconsinites "suffered and saw their livelihoods destroyed because of Trump...Like the rest of the country, we are reeling from the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic and Trump’s failed response," says President of Farmers Union.

Last Updated on Saturday, 12 September 2020 10:12
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