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Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Call for Artists: Windmills on Parade

Evansville Community Partnership, Inc. (ECP) is accepting registrations until June 15th from artists who wish to participate in a downtown art project called “Windmills on Parade”. The Evansville Main Street business district will be lined with original art from July 1st, 2009 to October 4th, 2009. The art will be created around a windmill structure provided by Dave’s ACE Hardware.

ECP and the volunteer committee members hope that this outdoor exhibit will help create a walk-able downtown, generating interest in visiting and shopping in our Main Street area. Discovering Youth Arts will also have an exhibit downtown featuring windmill themed art created by community youth.

More details can be found at www.windmillsonparade.com and www.evansville-wi.net or by calling Jean Wyse at 608-882-6970. Please pass this on to any artist that you think would be interested.


Robin Grignon

Community Coordinator

Evansville Community Partnership, Inc.



USA Today; GOP cut 900 million of flu preparedness from stimulus bill

Click on the post for the latest.

Nostalgia: The Day the House on Church Street burned----or "We don't do no plannin, we just do what we Want"---a true story.

Some years ago, on a hot summer day, I was on my usual 30 minute bike run, and on the usual path that took me up Liberty street.....but something was different this day. As I approached Madison street, I noticed the crowd, and the smoke, and the fumes....and then the house in flames with the firemen on the sides watching and managing the fire.

"What's goin on,?" I asked a chunky, 3xl kind of guy watching. "Why are they not trying to save the house?" I asked.

"This is goin to be the NEW fire station," He grunted.

"WOW", I exclaimed. I had been to all the meetings, and had somehow missed this. Then it dawned on me that I did not attend the fire meetings.

"Would not a location out of town, maybe the empty PIG spot on Madison be a better place?, I asked. Was there any discussion or planning involved?"

"NOPE", he said. "This is Evansville, and we don't to no planin,....We just do what we want."

Monday, April 27, 2009

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Video: 1 of 4: Richard Krake: "My Life and Times in Art"

Video: 1of 4: Richard Krake: Painter: Talk at the Eager Free Public Library on April 21, 2009; Reviews his early life, the influences to his art, and some of his paintings revisited.

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Video: 2 of 4: Mr. Richard Krake: "My Life and Times in Art"

Video: 2 of 4: Mr. Richard Krake: My Life and Times in Art: Presentation at Eager Free Public Library, April 21, 2009; Discusses influences to his art and examples. Complete audio on the Observer.

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Video: 3 of 4: Mr. Richard Krake: "My Life and Times in Art"

Video: 3 of 4: Richard Krake: Evansville, Wi: "My life and times in Art---review of his early years and influences for art, and specific paintings and their origin.

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Video: 4 0f 4: Richard Krake

Video: 4 0f 4: Richard Krake: "My Life and Times in Art"; Eager Free Public Library; 4/21/2009:

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Gazette: Pres Obama presses for tighter credit card consumer protections

Click on the post for the story in today's Janesville Gazette.

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

TaiChi at Monona Terrace---Rooftop Garden===Tuesdays and Thursdays

T'ai Chi at Monona Terrace • Tuesdays & Thursdays
May 12 - June 25 • 12:00-12:45PM
William T. Evjue Rooftop Garden

WPR: Joy Cardin: "The Student Loan Scam"----podcast of the day

Click on the post to access the program from this morning with the author of the book, "The Student Loan Scam." Why the loan providers have a motivation for default. What is the real rate of default? A tale of lives destroyed by terms and conditions that are not like any other in lending for regular Americans.

Nostalgia: Dreams of Being a Dive Rescue Professional

Well it has been a long time since I lived just a block or two from East Shore Dock in Mahtomedi on the shores of White Bear Lake....but even as a youngster, ever since one of the neighbor kids got cut by a motor propeller, and got rescued, I have wondered about the glory of being a dive rescue professional-----when the sirens went off, heading to the speedboat, donning the scuba gear and heading out to the rescue.

Well...it does take a lot of training---(click on the post for a sample training firm) but thank goodness there are lots of pros that can provide training and equipment---and then there is the ageold problem of getting fit enough to get my swimming legs back---and yes, as some folks have teased me about, whether there is 3xl scuba dive gear available.

I know I will just have to watch this time, and I will gracefully yield to those heroic folks of the EMS, and I do tip my hat off to them as they embark on the extensive training necessary----and of course the training of how to move from street clothes to scuba gear quickly. It sure should be something that a cub reporter does look forward to covering.

Gazette: "Paddling Away"---plans for boat rental on Lake Leota Progress

Click on the post for the latest from Gina Duwe of the Janesville Gazette.

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

"My Life and Times In Art"---Richard Krake

Richard Krake spoke at the Eager Free Public Library in Evansville on April 21.2009. Complete and uncut audio of classic review of his life in art; Video Clips also available soon on the The Evansville Observer

MP3 File

Friday, April 17, 2009

Brodhead Municipal Court Report--April 15, 2009

Click on the post for the full report.

Rock Cty Criminal Justice Coordinating Council discusses Heroin Threat--March 2009

March 19, 2009
Call to Order. Chair Deupree called the meeting of the Criminal Justice Coordinating Council to order at 4:00 P.M. in the Courthouse Conference Center on the second floor of the Rock County Courthouse-East.
Committee Members Present: Chair Neil Deupree, Supervisors Sandra Kraft and Marv Wopat, Supervisor Robert Fizzell (for Regina Dunkin), Sheriff Robert Spoden, Art Thurmer, Eric Nelson, Ruth Bettin, Jose Carrillo, Jan Devore, Deputy Chief Dave Moore, David O’Leary, Judge James Daley, Lorenzo Henderson.
Committee Members Absent: Charmian Klyve, Ed Pearson, Rich Gruber.
Staff Members Present: Elizabeth Pohlman McQuillen, Criminal Justice Planner/Analyst; Josh Smith, Assistant to the County Administrator.
Others Present: Supervisor William Grahn; Kay Deupree, League of Women Voters; Lynda Owens, Justice Overcoming Borders; Tony Farrell Sr., Dr. David Pierce, Mercy Options; Kurt Reynolds, Retired Police Officer.
Approval of Agenda. Judge Daley moved approval of the agenda as presented, second by Mr. O’Leary. ADOPTED.
Approval of Minutes of February 19, 2009. Sheriff Spoden moved approval of the minutes of February 19, 2009 as presented, second by Mr. O’Leary. ADOPTED.
Recognition of JDC Staff & Regina Dunkin. Chair Deupree advised Ms. Dunkin has been selected as a Woman of Distinction by the YWCA for 2009.
Supervisor Wopat read a letter from Catherine Manthey, a court appointed representative from Walworth County, commending the Juvenile Detention Center staff for their helpfulness, courtesy and good work.
Discussion Regarding Heroin Problem in Rock County. Chief Deputy Moore said he feels heroin use is significant in our community. There have been two deaths and 6-12 overdoses in the City of Janesville in the last year. He said kids begin by using prescription drugs which many get from their parents’ medicine cabinets and then migrate to heroin. Users sell or do other crimes to get the money for more drugs. He commented heroin is terribly addictive and he doesn’t think arrests will solve this problem. We need a wider net to help these people.
Sheriff Spoden said he has met with Mr. O’Leary and the local drug units. He said they all realized over the past year that something was developing. He said they have seen activity in Edgerton, Evansville and the rural areas of Janesville and Beloit. The usual age group is 20-36, college-educated people. A law enforcement meeting was held a week and a half ago with the
Chiefs from our area. They believe this has come into our communities within a year’s time. Sheriff Spoden said he met with law enforcement in Winnebago County, Illinois, and they are seeing the same things we are, but their numbers are higher. He has also met with the FBI.
Sheriff Spoden said they are seeing a lot of people go to heroin first. They discovered heroin is relatively inexpensive and easy to get, partially due to some internal strife between drug gangs. The Sheriff said he also met with Senator Feingold. When the Taliban was initially eradicated from Afghanistan, this stopped 90% of the heroin exports. However, there has not been enough forces on the ground to deal with this issue and production has increased. The Sheriff said the heroin comes from Afghanistan, Columbia and Mexico.
Sheriff Spoden said he intends to increase the manpower in this area and hopes to rein this in. Because heroin is so addictive, people get on it and then have to sell it to their friends to finance their addiction. He believes people from this area go to the Rockford area, buy heroin, use it down there, drive back to Rock County and sell it to others. He commented there are so many dealing and using, it is difficult to get information from anyone.
Sheriff Spoden said the Sheriff’s Office wants to do a multiple approach: 1) Educate the community about this problem; 2) Continue investigations with the Sheriff’s Office, Beloit and Janesville Police Departments. He said they are getting a JAG grant and their goal is to hit the problem hard with all of their combined resources.
Mr. Nelson said he thinks a major contributor to drug problems is the availability of prescription drugs. He feels doctors are too quick to prescribe these very powerful drugs.
Mr. O’Leary said he and the Sheriff have been asked to make a presentation on the drug issue in Rock County to the Janesville School Board. He said heroin is the most purchased drug by the Street Crimes Unit in sting operations. Ms. Bettin asked if this presentation will be made to the Beloit School Board, with Sheriff Spoden advising he will discuss this with Chief Lathrop.
Supervisor Wopat commented that he attends a men’s support group consisting of 50-60 attendees, ages 13-70. Of this group, about 25 were heroin addicts at one time.
Chair Deupree introduced Dr. David Pierce from Mercy Options. Dr. Pierce said he came from New Mexico, the “heroin capital of the United States”. He said in 1986 he was working in the Harlem Drug Clinic, and at that time, there was a heroin epidemic. He said he is seeing opiates as the first drug being tried, ahead of marijuana. He commented the epidemic is here now and is very different from 10 years ago. People are getting into it with prescription drugs, i.e., Oxycontin, Vicadin, etc. He said law enforcement works and treatment works too.
Dr. Pierce said addiction is a complicated process. The part of the brain that is in the brain stem, which controls behavior, is what is taken over in addiction. He said the system is hijacked by the drug. Dr. Pierce said drug addiction is affected by availability, price and genetics and that a person can/will become addicted to heroin after 3-4 uses.
With regard to withdrawal, Dr. Pierce said the entire nervous system is sedated during heroin use. In withdrawal, the entire nervous system comes roaring back with increased heart rate, respiratory rate, GI system hyperactivity, anxiety, inability to sit still, and inability to sleep. Depending on the degree of drug use, a person can also develop bone and muscle pain.
Dr. Pierce said treatment involves detox, residential treatment, a 12-step program, and a maintenance program. He commented that this works more than it doesn’t work. It reduces heroin use along with the transmission of hepatitis and HIV. Supervisor Wopat asked about Suboxone. Dr. Pierce said this new drug basically blocks the effects of heroin and is a very effective medicine, however, it is expensive.
Chair Deupree asked Dr. Pierce how the Criminal Justice System can help with the heroin situation. Dr. Pierce encouraged law enforcement and courts to fill addicts with fear as they desperately need to see the consequences of their actions. He added that coercion works. Mr. O’Leary said his office is overrun with heroin cases and the crimes associated with heroin. He said he is reluctant to put heroin addicts, users or suppliers into the Drug Court because we don’t know if a 6-12 month program is long enough. He thinks it would more likely require a 3-5 year supervisory period.
Judge Daley said we have to deal with: 1) drug trafficking caused by the demand for drugs, and 2) the collateral crimes which go along with the heroin. The Criminal Justice System is not going to correct the heroin problem - we are reactive. We need to determine how to keep people from starting because once they start, there is a cascading effect. Mr. O’Leary said we need to look at prevention and treatment options for younger kids. He said he is not familiar with what is available in Rock County. Supervisor Grahn commented he receives calls from people about getting into a treatment center, but we have no place to put them.
Mr. Thurmer said he agrees with Mr. Nelson that drugs are being over prescribed. We not only have to educate kids in school, but we need to educate doctors. This group should take an active role and become aware of what is happening with these prescriptions. Mr. Thurmer said we need to look at creating partnerships to provide treatment options. He commented that he doesn’t know that we have any good options for treatment. Mr. Nelson said we need to make more treatment available because at this point, if a person has no medical insurance, treatment is not available.
Supervisor Fizzell said he agrees opiates are readily available from doctors and that if treatment were available, people would use it. Supervisor Kraft said she agrees with the need for education. Mr. Henderson said the Beloit Police Department has seen an increase in drug use and related crimes. He recommends an earlier approach and to hit it hard. Ms. Devore advised she has a State Methadone Authority staff person in her department. She said she will talk with this person and look into federal grants within the Substance Abuse Bureau. She thinks there may be some that are targeted for kids. Ms. Bettin agreed with the need for more treatment. Mr. Carrillo agreed with the need to stop the supply. He commented that doctors have records in their computers so there should be a way to monitor it.
Chair Deupree thanked everyone for their good ideas and said he will work with Marv, Josh, and Elizabeth and see what we are going to do.
CJCC Priorities. Postponed to a future meeting.
Discussion Regarding Alcohol Tax. Postponed to a future meeting.
Future Meeting Dates and Locations. The next meeting will be held on Thursday, April 16, 2009, 4:00 P.M., here in the Courthouse Conference Center.
Citizen Participation and Announcements. Mr. Reynolds commented that law enforcement is doing beer and tobacco stings, but he could find a 15 year old to get drugs for him. Mrs. Deupree said drugs are too available in schools and students know who to go to get them.
Ms. Pohlman McQuillen advised the grant has been submitted.
Adjournment. Chair Deupree adjourned the meeting at 5:35 P.M.
Respectfully submitted,
Linda Milligan
Confidential Administrative Assistant

Gazette; Janesville Police responding to robbery at Milton Dean Medical Center

Click on the post for the story in the Janesville Gazette.

Thursday, April 16, 2009

Video: #4 Evansville Police Station

Video #4: Common Council discussed Evansville Police Station remodel. Administrator proposes to use EMS fund which would be a "temptation" for EMS to spend, but could be used for police station. Maybe EMS could have two stalls in station.

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Video: 3; Evansville Police Station

#3Ald Braunschweig, Cothard, and Jacobson discuss remodeling expenses proposed; Warning about budget for next year and expectations of cuts.

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Video; #2-- Evansville Police Station Remodel

Video: #2; Common Council Police Station Remodel 4-14-2009--Roger Berg named project manager of remodel; Ald Barb Jacobson and Common Council President Mason Braunschweig share concerns.

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Common Council: Police Station Remodel

Video: 4-14-2009: Evansville Police Station Remodel --City Administrator Dan Wietecha explains need for budget amedment and action items.

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Gazette: New Edgerton City Hall goes to referendum

Click on the post for the story in today's Gazette.

Yahoo: Finance: The coming "stress test" for investors.

Click on the post for the latest.

The Relocation Order--the map of land to be acquired by Evansville

Doubleclick pic to enlarge.

Common Council: The Relocation Order to obtain land for improved stormwater handling

Click on pic to enlarge.

Evansville Police Station Remodel Design plus garage

Double click to enlarge.

Pioneer Press: General Growth--Mall Operator of Minn and Wis files for Chapter 11

Click on the post for the latest.

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Video: Heroin: Clear and Present Danger

Video; 3 of 3: Sheriff Robert Spoden speaks to Evansville Common Council, Tuesday, April 14, 2009 on clear and present danger of heroin in our community, what law enforcement is doing about it, and what the community can do.

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Video; 2 of 3: Heroin: Clear and Present Danger--

Video: 2 of 3: Common Council: Sheriff Robert Spoden, spoke of the threat to our community, what law enforcement is doing, and what citizens need to know

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Mailbag; 'St. Paul's Parish Launches Military Project--

St. Paul Parish launches military project

St. Paul Parish’s Council of Catholic Women (CCW) and Catholic Youth Organization (CYO) have joined forces to support our local military, both those currently serving and those returning home.
The organizations will soon begin collecting items to be placed in care packages and sent to military personnel overseas. Care packages may include personal care products, such as soaps and lotions, and items to help pass the time, such as books and magazines. The CYO held a bake sale in February to earn start-up money for the project. The group earned nearly $200, which will be used to purchase products and ship packages.
The parish is currently compiling a list of names and addresses of military personnel who may wish to receive packages from the group. Recipients do not need to be from St. Paul Parish or from the Evansville community. If you know of someone serving overseas who would appreciate receiving occasional packages please contact Nancy Hurley at 882-4327 or njh223@gmail.com.
The CCW and CYO would also like to support our returning veterans. Youth of the parish are currently writing notes of thanks and support to Evansville soldier Jake Janes who recently suffered serious injuries while serving in Afghanistan. If you know a returning soldier who would appreciate a note of support please contact Nancy Hurley. The parish will also send occasional cards to veterans served by Veterans Hospital in Madison and include military personnel in their prayers.

"Heroin: Clear and Present Danger"--Sheriff Robert Spoden

Video: Common Council: April 14, 2009: Sheriff Rober Spoden speaks on Heroin--a clear and present danger for Evansville citizens---the deaths, the trends, what the plan is from the law enforcement community and what is needed from citizens. 1 of 3 video.

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Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Audio; Common Council: Police Station Remodel

Audio: Discussion on Tuesday, April 14, 2009; Police Station remodel; budget adjustment. Will use EMS fund? Full gavel to gavel discussion

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Audio: Sheriff Robert Spoden Speaks on Heroin Hazard

Audio: Speech of Robert Spoden, Rock Co Sheriff, on heroin hazard for Evansville residents---full audio, selected video on blog

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Evansville Common Council meets ---Tonight---full agenda

Click on the post for the full agenda.

Audio: Pres Obama: 1st Quarter report on Economy

Audio; President Obama addresses students of Georgetown University and reviews his economic plan, what has been done and what will be done.

MP3 File

Monday, April 13, 2009

Pioneer Press: School Beat: Mahtomedi Schools Has Focus on Engineering excitement

Click on the post for the interesting story.

School Beat; Evansville Schools to eliminate current Half-Day Standalone Kindergarten

(Ed.note; Here is the portion of the Supr. report for tonight.)

Half Day Kindergarten:
April 1 was the deadline by which we needed 15 parents to sign up for half day kindergarten for next
year. We only had 13, therefore, we will not be operating a stand alone half day section. We will work
with the parents of these 13 children to integrate them as clusters into our full day sections. Currently, the
half day program has 15 students, 6 sections of kindergarten have 17 students and two sections have 18.

Yahoo: Video: Finance: Banks taking TARP Funds; Raising Fees

Click on the post for the latest.

Finance Committee discuses Police Station Remodel and staffing

Click on the post for the minutes.

Saturday, April 11, 2009

Background: Historical: Evansville Police Calls for Service 2002-2008

Click on the post for the historical data.

Mailbag; Liebel Writes; School Board Meeting Monday Night--Half Day Kindergarten on Chopping Block?

Ed.note; Meeting will be at Thoedore Robinson LMC)SCHOOL BOARD MEETINGS
LOCATION of Board Meetings - Theodore Robinson Intermediate School (TRIS) LMC. To find the LMC -park in back of school, off of Fair Street, come in doors by the fieldhouse, turn left and first room on the left is the LMC. If you have any questions, please feel free to contact Kelly Mosher, 882-3387.

Evansville's stand-alone, half-day kindergarten program is once again on the administration's chopping block. School board policy stands that the program will be offered if 15 families have enrolled by April 1st. Lou Havlik is maintaining the list of families registered, and to the best knowledge of the registrees, we have 15 families currently enrolled.

However, per my converstion with Lou Havlik on March 26th, half-day kindergarten will not continue as a stand-alone program, but start on a pull-out basis in the fall of 2009. Many parents fell this is not the best option for their children.

As you know, Steve Hoffenberg is retiring this spring and a replacement teacher will need to be hired. Many of us feel this may be a stumbling block, plus the $20,000 it costs to run buses for half-day kindergarten students at 11:20am after they are released.

Until we hear the administration's reasons for wanting to eliminate stand-alone half-day kindergarten, we won't know their reasoning. Thus the importance of attending this Monday's school board meeting.

If you would like your voice to be heard, please consider writing an approximately 2 minute speech to read to the school board this Monday, April 13th, at 5:30pm
Here is the meeting schedule:


Wednesday, April 08, 2009

Gazette; Dean to lay off 90

Click on the post for the latest from the Gazette.

Video: " I fell in love with a roller derby Queen"---the song

As a mere appendix to the extensive coverage by the aces at the Janesville Gazette of the recent Roller Derby event, I merely offer an appendix of one of my favorite video clips----"Roller Derby Queen---the song"--with Chris Hector on guitar.

Nosalgia: ( February 2008): Tales from Normal, Mn.: "The Virtual Prom"----FICTION

(Ed.note: Some things never change. Here is a classic from yesteryear)

Well. This is the most difficult time of the year. There is an intense urge to break away for a winter getaway, but the perils of driving prevent it, and the costs of an upscale tropical getaway are prohibitive----so I just thought I would give Herman, my old friend in Normal, Mn. a phone call instead....just to reach out and see what might be happening in the frozen tundra.

I wasted no time with formalities once I got Herman on the line.

"Herman, here in Wisconsin we have been in a tizzy about Prom planning and all. It seems that some folks felt that if a destination wedding was the modern thing, a destination prom would be likewise a real attractive option. After all. All the kids would be sharing quality time. The event would create little cleanup. And besides the kids would be on the bus to and from and the risks would be minimized of wayward conduct. So. Lots of plusses. What do you do up in Normal, Mn., Herman?"

"Shucks, Wolfman( that's what he always called me) you completely misunderstand the culture of modern youth. The point is not to share lots of time together. It is really just to spend a few moments uplifting and upscaling the fellow classmates at the ceremony, and then to split to party separately. All the while the parents think they are sipping ice water at the event.

Up here in Normal, Mn., we just do the event virtually-----we just have a VIRTUAL Prom----EVERYONE gets what they want. The school gets no fuss and mess. The kids get to party privately. And what is best of all, nobody gets to drive anywhere. What could be better? Besides. It is so cold up here in Normal, Mn., that nylons and fancy duds are just plain freezing. It just makes sense to go VIRTUAL.

I explained to Herman that here in Wisconsin, we are dead set against VIRTUAL. In fact, WEAC is at war with anything that is not hands on, down home, and hireable.

Herman was not sympathetic.

"If you do not believe in virtual, then you must stop whining about the muss and fuss of real events. Up here in God's country, we are in touch with the new....and the old. It's just the natural way."

Well. Thank goodness I am back in good old Wisconsin. Where we can rail against virtual while we are on the computer 24/7 and never notice the inconsistency.


Yahoo: Chrysler unveils new SUV---- Punk and defiant right to the end.

No "kowtowing" for those Chrysler guys. They are quite an independent and bankrupt bunch of dudes. Yo.

Click on the post for the details.

NYT: TARP funds to be extended to life insurers

Click on the post.

Tuesday, April 07, 2009

Gazette; Energy Task Force Corner; Running the Fleet on Water

Click on the post for the latest.

Dateline Normal, Mn.: Mailbag: "The Top 10 Reasons why we cannot raise taxes on the rich--or close tax loopholes--FICTION

Click on the post for the list. Thanks Herman.

Gazette; The Growing Labor Movement?

We remember Martin Luther King. Do we remember what he spoke of? Click on the post for an article in the Janesville Gazette today that reviews the growth of labor union membership lately.

Pioneer Press; Radio Legend Steve Cannon dies at 81

The Observer mourns the loss of Steve Cannon. Every morning before going to class in college, there would be an intense discussion over breakfast of whatever Ma Linger had been up to the night before.

It always amazed my grandmother, who was 85 at the time, that somehow after being up half the night "cavorting around" Ma Linger could seem pretty chipper on the radio.

I never had the heart to tell her that Steve Cannon was doing her voice. Click on the post for the full story and access to some of the radio clips.

Monday, April 06, 2009

Mailbag: I & E Club: April Meeting

Hello Everyone:

It's already the second week in April, and I would like to remind everyone of the I&E Club meeting this Wednesday, April 8 from 6:30 to 8:30 at the Eager Economy Building, 7 E. Main St in Evansville.

The guest speaker this month will be Dave Warren, owner of Dave's Milton Ace Hardware and Evansville Ace Hardware. The topic will be ?Service that Exceeds Expectations?. If you own, plan to own, or manage a business, come and get some valuable pointers on customer service!

Please invite your friends, family, coworkers and colleagues. Keep in mind that the club welcomes not just inventors and entrepreneurs, but also established businesses, new businesses, and investors. In addition, invention is more than just creating new gizmos, it is innovation too. It can be creating a new service, process, concept, mind-set, message, or strategy which is better than the existing alternatives. You never know who you might meet and what you might learn!

Yahoo: Video; Prof. Black Speaks--on the Stress Test for Banks

Click on the post for the latest.

NYT: Mr. Summers and...... the rest of the story

Click on the post for the full story in the New York Times.

77 Square; Skype Free Video Phone makes news

Click on the post for the full article.

The Observer uses skype for consults with London Fly Girl. Check it out. Click on the post.

Friday, April 03, 2009

Politico: The Inside Scoop----The President meets the Bankers

Click on the post for the inside scoop of the meeting.

Mailbag: Rep. Brett Davis Writes; Opposes Prevailing Wage

80th Assembly District Update - April 3, 2009
Reject Prevailing Wage Provision
In a time when the state of Wisconsin should be doing everything it can to promote economic development and job creation, there has been action taken at the state level that would do just the opposite. The WI Department of Workforce Development (DWD), backed by a proposal in Governor Doyle’s Budget, has changed its interpretation of the state’s laws regarding prevailing wage. Although prevailing wage situations are not a commonly discussed topic, the expansion of prevailing wage law will have the result of increasing construction costs and will slow future business development in our state.

Currently, state and local governments must pay the prevailing wage rates on highway construction and other public works projects. The prevailing wage is determined by the DWD for geographical areas, based on a small survey of the pay and benefits received by a majority of the workers in the respective trades in that locality. In general, the prevailing wage rate is the rate paid to union workers.

However, the DWD has recently issued retroactive rulings for 13 communities that would reverse the long-held assumption that projects where government is not the contracting party are not subject to prevailing wage. In addition, the language on page 727 of the Governor Doyle’s budget would echo this interpretation and change state law to subject private construction projects receiving any public assistance to the prevailing wage. This new requirement would apply even to projects privately constructed that would continue in private ownership after completion.

To illustrate the negative potential these policies will have on economic development, we can look a recent ruling by the DWD on a project in Monroe, WI. In this case, the DWD issued a ruling that the City of Monroe is required to seek a prevailing wage rate for the Wal-Mart and Menards projects. Although they are both private projects, the new ruling would mean a higher wage would have to paid, thus increasing the project costs by thousands. It is possible that if these businesses would have known about the increased costs in the future, they would not have chosen to expand, construct, and invest in our area.

In summary, the expansion of the prevailing wage laws would result in much higher construction costs and therefore make Wisconsin a less attractive place to do business. In fact, lower bids from area smaller, non-union contractors would not be allowed. The DWD rulings and Governor Doyle’s proposal would force development companies to hire contractors that pay the high union-level wages to all of their employees. The result of this anti-competition measure will increase the cost of construction and development projects and deter economic development in our state. I will continue to push for the removal of this provision from the budget and will support the passage of legislation that would reverse this interpretation of the law.

State Representative Brett Davis
State Capitol - Room 308 North - Post Office Box 8952 - Madison, Wisconsin 53708
(608) 266-1192 - Fax (608) 282-3680 - Toll Free: (888) 534-0080
Email: Rep.Davis@legis.wi.gov
On the Internet: www.brettdavis.us

Reuters: One in 10 in America now on Food Stamps

Click on the post for the latest.

Common Council Special Meeting: Additional Police Officer on Agenda- City Hall Location note

Common Council
Special Meeting
Thursday, April 9, 2009, 6:00 p.m.
CITY HALL---- Evansville, WI


1. Call to order

2. Roll call

3. Approval of Agenda

4. Citizen Appearances.

5. Motion to approve application for COPS Hiring Recovery Program (CHRP) grant for additional full-time police officer.

6. Motion to adjourn.

Click on the post for the information regarding the CHRP application process and the funding source.

This is a competitive process for these federal funds, which can last 36 months, and at the conclusion of the 36 months, the local community must retain the position and fund it.

"At the conclusion of federal funding, grantees must retain all sworn officer positions awarded under the CHRP grant. The retained CHRP-funded position(s) should be added to the grantees law enforcement budget with state and/or local funds, over and above the number of locally-funded positions that would have existed in the absence of the grant. "

Stay tuned.

Blog: The Komisar Scoop

Check out this blog. Click on the post.

OpEd: Springtime is seeking time

Recently I had the oppurtunity to attend a local church for a Stations of the Cross Service on a Friday night in Lent---that even included a light meal after ---grilled cheese and soup--my favorite.

To my surprise the church was PACKED. In fact, the pastor asked each person to share a booklet so they would go around.

I do have to admit. All throughout the service I wondered what the deal was. Was it the grilled cheese and soup?

Then I went and checked traffic on the sermon site and found that in the past month, the traffic has tripled nationwide of folks listening in on local sermons. Then on TV I saw a story that churches all over the country are seeing an increase in Sunday attendance.

Seems that all across America, people are desperately seeking...some faith, some hope...and yes a little love would do also...and are looking for more than just growing jobs by shopping.

Energy Independence Team meets next Tuesday, April 7th

click on the post for the full agenda.

Yahoo: Finance: Jobless rate bolts to 8.5%

Click on the post for the latest.

Pioneer Press: Audit reveals Wisconsin missteps

One of the major areas of concern was the Dept of Administration---HUH? Click on the post for the full story in the Pioneer Press.

Gazette; Feingold and Ryan team up on Line Item Veto

Click on the post for the story and the podcast in the Gazette.

Thursday, April 02, 2009

Blogs; London Flygirl Does Canterbury---the slideshow

Here are some scenes you did not see for the G20. Click on the post. Enjoy.

EMS Can drive---mark your calander---Saturday April 4th

Evansville EMS Aluminum Can Drive

Saturday, April 4th - starting at 8:00 am

***Please have your aluminum cans out to the curb by 8:00 am or drop them off at the EMS garage at 31 South Madison Street. For business pickup or rural pickup, please call 882-2269 and leave a message with address and directions to pickup site.

***All proceeds will go toward new equipment for the ambulance.

Yahoo: Finance: Stocks Jump

Click on the post for the latest.

Mailbag: Office hours for Congresswoman Tammy Baldwin, Thurs, April 9th in Evansville.

Good Morning,

Helen Forbeck, Field Representative for Congresswoman Tammy Baldwin will be holding Office Hours on behalf of the Congresswoman in Evansville next Thursday, April 9th. Please stop by if you have any need for help with the federal government or if you have questions or comments about legislation, federal grants or doing work with the federal government.

Thursday, April 9th

12:15 - 1:15 PM Eager Free Public Library

39 W. Main Street

Feel free to contact Helen anytime here in Tammy's Beloit Congressional Office.