Friday, February 22, 2013

Rep. Mursau - Press Release: Budget Statement

February 20, 2013
CONTACT: Rep. Jeff Mursau (888) 534-0036
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
 
Mursau on State Budget: Good Start, Room for Improvement
 
Madison … Representative Jeff Mursau (R–Crivitz) heard Governor Scott Walker’s budget address on Wednesday night. Mursau both approved of and had concerns with different components of Walker’s budget proposal. The governor made good on his promise to continue reforming the way government operates, while only partially recognizing problems and funding solutions for rural Wisconsin.

“Governor Walker made great strides in his proposal to increase funding for worker education, mental health treatment, domestic violence, and military veteran assistance programs,” Mursau said. “However, his education reform and funding looks like a first-draft that needs help from the public and legislators alike.”

The legislature’s Joint Finance Committee (JFC) will hold hearings around Wisconsin, including Green Bay, in April. Following the public hearings, JFC will amend the budget bill in May and send it to the Assembly and Senate for final passage in June.

“This proposal is missing a decent increase in busing funds, federal timber income for school districts in the national forest, and local control for school choice vouchers,” Mursau said. “It’s still early, though, and I’ll work hard with area citizens, Governor Walker and other legislators to improve education funding for northern Wisconsin.”
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Chinese Marine Surveillance Vessels Set Sail for South China Sea Naval Today

Chinese Marine Surveillance Vessels Set Sail for South China Sea Naval Today

Rep. Mursau - Press Release: Phone Lines Operational Again

February 20, 2013
CONTACT: Rep. Jeff Mursau (888) 534-0036
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

 
Madison … Representative Jeff Mursau (R–Crivitz) has been notified that State Capitol telephone service has been restored to full working order.

“Citizens can reach me via telephone again,” Mursau said. “The phone line that was damaged has been fully repaired.”

Capitol technology was still working, though, and Mursau continued to receive Email and Internet communication during the outage.
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Eisenhower Carrier Strike Group Departs for Deployment

Navy SEAL: Life After the Teams-Professor Michael Crooke

E-update From the Desk of Governor Scott Walker

E-update From the Desk of Governor Scott Walker
One of the most important duties I have serving as your Governor is to provide you directly with updates related to the operation of our state government. I also frequently provide updates on Facebook (Governor Scott Walker) and Twitter (@govwalker). Please feel free to share this update with your family, friends, and others who may be interested in state government operations.
 

More Prosperity, Better Performance, and True Independence
 
This week, I delivered the 2013 Budget Address in the State Capitol. By investing in creating jobs, developing the workforce, transforming education, reforming government, and investing in infrastructure, we will be able to continue to move Wisconsin forward. You can watch a video of the address at www.walker.wi.gov.

I am proud to announce a budget which will reduce individual income taxes by $343 million over the next two years. Middle class families will see the biggest tax relief, but this is just a down payment for future tax cuts. I want to cut taxes over and over and over again until we are leading the country in economic recovery.

My budget has an intense focus on creating jobs and developing our workforce. Studies show the majority of net new jobs come from businesses less than five years old, and the most limiting factor in developing these opportunities is the availability of new capital. By investing $25 million in fiscal year 2013-14, we show we are serious about growing the economy by ensuring startups have access to capital. Wisconsin has a good supply of new invention and potential commercial innovations. Wisconsin holds 2.11 percent of the nation's patent filings, 12th in the nation, and has 2.15 percent of the nation's academic research spending, 13th in the nation. However, Wisconsin only has 0.36 percent of the nation's venture capital investments. Continued inaction increasingly puts Wisconsin at a competitive disadvantage. These funds will make sure that small businesses in our state can thrive.

Beyond this effort, my budget proposal provides almost a $100 million investment of new state funds, with a total investment of $132 million in workforce development aimed at equipping workers with the skills they need to find jobs in the modern workforce. Specifically, the Wisconsin Technical College System (WTCS) will receive $5 million in general aid and flexibility over $22 million in existing worker training-related funds. This investment, and others in our University of Wisconsin System and traditional K-12 education, is designed to ensure that our citizens have the skills needed for the jobs of today and tomorrow.

The budget also transforms education. Overall, I put $475.6 million in new state funds into our schools and higher education. And, for the first time, a significant portion of that funding is based on performance. Every child, regardless of their zip code, deserves access to a great education.

Schools with grades of “significantly exceeds expectations” or “exceeds expectations” will be awarded $24 million; and $30 million will be awarded to schools that improve report card scores by at least three points (out of 100 total) over the prior year. Schools that receive the award can use it to fund one-time items such as teacher bonuses, purchases of new technology, or facility upgrades.

In addition, $10 million will be available as competitive grant funding for school districts that present innovative plans to turn around failing schools. Support for these districts recognizes the unique challenges faced by schools and provides opportunity and support for improvement.

As part of transforming education, the budget will include initiatives to expand school choice so parents and students have legitimate alternatives to underperforming schools. The budget will open the choice program to school districts with at least two underperforming schools (those receiving school report card grades of "fails to meet expectations" or "meets few expectations"), at least 4,000 students, and at least 20 students intending to participate in the program. This expansion will be capped at 500 students statewide for fiscal year 2014 and 1,000 students statewide for fiscal year 2015. Eligibility requirements for students would be similar to current choice program eligibility requirements.

Wisconsin’s infrastructure will also receive a $6.4 billion investment with the proposed budget. The plan will prioritize existing revenue streams, replace the raids of the past with state taxpayer funds, and make sensible operational reforms so Wisconsin can continue to maintain and develop existing infrastructure projects. This transportation plan contains no scheduled delays for any major highway projects.

Our investments are focused on improving performance in Wisconsin. Reforming government is naturally a part of this budget because government should provide a hand up but not a permanent hand out. I have proposed bold entitlement reform, including requiring worker training for food stamp eligibility and increasing required work searches for unemployment insurance eligibility.

Medicaid reform will reduce the number of uninsured individuals in the state by nearly 50 percent or 224,580 individuals. The number of individuals dependent on government-run health care will also be reduced. My budget proposal covers people living in poverty through Medicaid and allows individuals above that level to access affordable health insurance coverage through the federal health insurance exchange or the private insurance market.

This budget is focused on providing more prosperity, better performance, and true independence for all Wisconsinites. Our budget puts in place reforms and performance measures to ensure that future generations have access to even more freedom and more prosperity for years to come.



It has been a pleasure communicating with you. It is an honor to serve as your Governor and represent the residents of Wisconsin.
Sincerely,

Governor Scott Walker

Release: Coast Guard reopens southern branch of Elizabeth River

News Release

Coast Guard reopens southern branch of Elizabeth River

PORTSMOUTH, Va. — The Coast Guard Captain of the Port for the port of Hampton Roads has rescinded the temporary safety zone on the southern branch of the Elizabeth River in the vicinity of the Gilmerton Bridge, Friday.

The waterway is open to all maritime traffic without restrictions.

Contractors working on the demolition of the old bridge span of the Gilmerton Bridge had uncovered what was reported to be old, unexploded naval ordnance at approximately 9 a.m.

As a precautionary measure, the Captain of the Port closed the waterway to all maritime traffic from Money Point to the I-64 High Rise Bridge while a Navy Explosive Ordnace Disposal team inspected the objects.

For inquiries concerning the unexploded ordnance and the Navy EOD unit contact Navy Region Mid-Atlantic Public Affairs at 757-322-2853.

For the Virginia Department of Transportation press release regarding the reopening of the bridge, please click here.

Inquires concerning today's investigation and subsequent closure of the Gilmerton Bridge are to be directed to Capt. Scott Saunders of the Chesapeake Fire Department at 757-615-8190.

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Date: Feb 22, 2013

Office: (757) 398-6272

Obama’s Wars in Africa: 100 Military Personnel in Niger Edition

Obama’s Wars in Africa: 100 Military Personnel in Niger Edition

STRATFOR: Challenges to Security in Northwest Africa (Agenda)

Canadian Govt to Invest $360 Mln in Its Coast Guard Fleet Naval Today

Canadian Govt to Invest $360 Mln in Its Coast Guard Fleet Naval Today

GOA Bringing Pro-gun Victim to Testify Before Congress on Monday

Gun Owners of America

GOA Bringing Pro-gun Victim to
Testify Before Congress on Monday
Stockton, CA survivor to explain
the dangers of gun-free zones
Remember Patrick Purdy? He became a household name on January 17, 1989, when he perpetrated what was, up till then, the worst elementary school shooting up to that time.
On that date, five innocent children lost their lives in Stockton, California, and 27 children were injured.
Well, Rob Young was one of the children who were injured. Today he is a sworn law enforcement officer in the state of California. But unlike politically-appointed police chiefs who are in the news calling for tougher gun legislation, Rob has a different message.
You see, Rob supports the Second Amendment of the U.S. Constitution, and he is opposed to gun control!
And that’s why Gun Owners of America is flying Rob Young to DC so that he can explain to Congress the dangers that gun-free zones pose. Officer Young has firsthand experience in this area, and he knows the dangers of disarming law-abiding citizens.
Moreover, Officer Young supports Rep. Steve Stockman’s legislation (H.R. 35) to repeal the gun-free zones that are currently preventing principals and teachers from protecting students.
Liberal media pundits are trying to convince Republicans that only strategy for defeating the worst of Obama’s anti-gun proposals is to accept other gun control items on Obama’s menu. Sadly, this is the strategy of Neville Chamberlain that, if we give more and more ground, then the “other side” will eventually back off.
But appeasement failed in the 1930’s and 1940’s, and it still doesn’t work today. If we are going to defeat the gun control legislation that before Congress, we need to push forward solutions that will make the “other side” back off.
We shouldn’t be negotiating on Obama’s terms. If anti-gunners are going to try to ram gun control down our throats -- in violation of the Constitution -- the best defense is to force them, instead, to swallow some of our proposals (which will actually work).
That’s why Rep. Stockman’s bill (H.R. 35) is so important.
GOA Executive Director Larry Pratt, who twice demolished CNN’s Piers Morgan in heated debates recently, will address the crowd on Monday and make a strong case for passing H.R. 35. GOA's Vice Chairman Tim Macy will also speak and will be introducing Officer Rob Young to the Congress.
ACTION: Please click here to urge your Representative (and staff) to attend this important symposium on Monday. Moreover, ask him or her to cosponsor H.R. 35, the Safe Schools Act of 2013.
Please note that there are two different action responses for you to send, and the system will automatically send that response, depending upon whether your Representative is a Republican or Democrat.

Release: Coast Guard closes southern branch of Elizabeth River due to unexploded ordnance

News Release

Coast Guard closes southern branch of Elizabeth River due to unexploded ordnance

PORTSMOUTH, Va. — The Coast Guard Captain of the Port for the port of Hampton Roads has closed down all river traffic on portions of the southern branch of the Elizabeth River after receiving a report of unexploded ordnance being discovered in the area, Feb. 22, 2013.

Contractors working on the Gilmerton Bridge uncovered what is reported to be old, unexploded naval ordnance.
As a precautionary measure, the Captain of the Port closed the waterway to all maritime traffic from Money Point to the I-64 High Rise Bridge, while a Navy explosive ordnance disposal unit inspects the objects.
The Chesapeake Police Department has also blocked all train and bridge traffic along the route.
For road closure inquiries contact the Chesapeake Police Department at 757-240-0579.
For inquiries concerning the unexploded ordnance and the Navy EOD unit contact Navy Region Mid-Atlantic Public Affairs at 757-322-2853.
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Date: Feb 22, 2013

Office: (757) 398-6272

Rome Reports: A look at the Most Famous Window in the World

SNOOPIE Teams Keep USS John C. Stennis on Alert

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Release: Coast Guard searches for missing mariner off NC coast

News Release

Coast Guard searches for missing mariner off NC coast

PORTSMOUTH, Va. — The Coast Guard is searching for a man Wednesday who reportedly fell overboard from a merchant vessel approximately 50 miles east of Cape Hatteras, N.C.

The master of the 478-foot merchant vessel Ice River contacted Coast Guard watchstander's via satellite phone at approximately 10:30 a.m. stating that a 33-year old male crewmember was missing from the ship.

Coast Guard watchstanders at Sector North Carolina diverted a crew aboard an HC-130 Hercules from Air Station Elizabeth City, N.C., which was conducting training in the vicinity, to commence a search.

A second Hercules crew took off from the air station at approximately 1:30 p.m. to join the search.

A Navy E-2 Hawkeye crew from Squadron VAW 124 was also diverted to help in the search.

"Coast Guard and Navy aircraft are conducting a joint search to locate the missing person," said Lt. Cmdr. James Weaver, the chief of Incident Response at Sector North Carolina. "It is our hope that our combined efforts and resources will bring the missing person home safely."

The Ice River's crew is also assisting in the search.
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Date: Feb 20, 2013

Office: (757) 398-6272

GA Sheriff: No One Is Coming To Our State & Violating The Second Amendment! : Freedom Outpost

GA Sheriff: No One Is Coming To Our State & Violating The Second Amendment! : Freedom Outpost

Rand Paul: Obama ‘histrionics’ over cuts - Kevin Cirilli - POLITICO.com

Rand Paul: Obama ‘histrionics’ over cuts - Kevin Cirilli - POLITICO.com

Release: Coast Guard begins work to establish temporary channel to reopen Hatteras to Ocracoke ferry route

News Release

Coast Guard begins work to establish temporary channel to reopen Hatteras to Ocracoke ferry route

 The Coast Guard crew of ANT Wanchese loads buoys upon the deck of a 55-foot Aids to Navigation Boat while in Hatteras Inlet, N.C., Feb. 19, 2013. The crew had traveled down from Wanchese, N.C., to place buoys for a temporary ferry channel between Hatteras Inlet and Ocracoke Island. U.S. Coast Guard photo by Chief Petty Officer Paul Bertram.
 
PORTSMOUTH, Va. — The Coast Guard began work Tuesday placing temporary aids to navigation that is necessary to open a substitute route for the Hatteras to Ocracoke ferry.

Coast Guard Aids to Navigation Team Wanchese personnel are scheduled to place 14 new temporary aids to navigation with their 26-foot Trailerable Aids to Navigation Boat and 55-foot Aids to Navigation Boat by Friday, which will serve as a temporary channel until the main ferry route dredging can be completed by the scheduled date of March 31.

"Our close work with federal, state and local partners in placing these temporary aids to navigation is a great interim solution that will allow ferry service to resume," said Rear Admiral Steven Ratti, the Coast Guard's 5th District commander.

Army Corps of Engineers personnel identified an alternate temporary route Feb. 8. A subsequent request was made by the North Carolina Ferry Division to the Coast Guard, which initiated the Coast Guard's response in marking a temporary channel.

The Hatteras to Ocracoke ferry route was suspended on Jan. 18 due to severe shoaling.
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Date: Feb 19, 2013

Office: (757) 398-6272

Benedict XVI could change rules to move up start of conclave

Exercise CITADEL SHIELD 2013 Underway in Continental U.S.; Military Saves Week Approaches

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

PHOTO UPDATE: U.S. Coast Guard, NTSB launch investigation on the Carnival Triumph engine fire

News Release

PHOTO UPDATE: U.S. Coast Guard, NTSB launch investigation on the Carnival Triumph engine fire

WASHINGTON – The U.S. Coast Guard and the National Transportation Safety Board launched an investigation Tuesday into the circumstances surrounding a fire aboard the Carnival Triumph, that ocurred Sunday.

The Carnival Triumph experienced an engine room fire while on a four-day cruise in the Gulf of Mexico, and has been without propulsion in the Gulf of Mexico since. The ship’s automatic fire extinguishing systems activated and the fire was extinguished. No injuries to guests or crew members were reported in connection to the fire.

The ship is expected to arrive in Mobile, Ala., Thursday evening.

Because the Carnival Triumph is a Bahamian flagged vessel, the Bahamas Maritime Authority is the primary investigative agency. In accordance with international guidelines, the U.S. will participate in this investigation as a Marine Safety Investigative State.

Coast Guard members from both the Investigations and Cruise Ship Centers of Expertise, along with a representative from the Coast Guard Marine Safety Center will lead the U.S. investigation joined by a team of five investigators from the NTSB Office of Marine Safety and the Office of Research and Engineering. The purpose of the investigation is to identify causal and contributing factors that led to the incident. Additionally both the crew response and effectiveness of fire fighting systems will be evaluated to help prevent future incidents.

The U.S. team is expected to arrive in Mobile Wednesday. Results of the investigation will be released to the public once the investigation by the Bahamas Maritime Authority is complete.
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Date: Feb 18, 2013
U.S. Coast Guard Headquarters
Office: (202) 372-4630

Monday, February 18, 2013

VIDEO: US Coast Guard Commissions Cutter Robert Yered Naval Today

VIDEO: US Coast Guard Commissions Cutter Robert Yered Naval Today

Russia, Italy Revisit Developing S-1000 Naval Today

Russia, Italy Revisit Developing S-1000 Naval Today

Misstep in gun bill could defeat the effort | Local News | The Seattle Times

Misstep in gun bill could defeat the effort | Local News | The Seattle Times

What's the Pope doing? Details on his current spiritual retreat

Group to honor Benedict XVI with longest applause in history

Carrier Airborne Early Warning Squadron 77 to be Disestablished; PACT Sailors

Erick Erickson endorses Mark Sanford in South Carolina - The Hill's Ballot Box

Erick Erickson endorses Mark Sanford in South Carolina - The Hill's Ballot Box