Friday, May 03, 2013

Press Release: Tiffany Calls on WI Congressional Delegation to Investigate Environmental Protection Agency Practices

Tiffany Calls on WI Congressional Delegation to Investigate Environmental Protection Agency Practices
Environmental Protection Agency will not require Bad River Band to comply with Clean Water Act for new permit
 
Madison…Today State Senator Tom Tiffany (R-Hazelhurst) called on Wisconsin’s Congressional Delegation to look into practices at the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) after new reports have surfaced that the EPA will not require the Bad River Band of the Lake Superior Tribe of Chippewa to comply with the Clean Water Act before issuing a new 5-year wastewater discharge permit. Earlier this year, news outlets from around Wisconsin reported on the repeated discharging of wastewater from the tribe’s Odanah based facility that included suspended solids, e-coli and phosphates into the Bad River that flows into Lake Superior. “I am calling on Wisconsin’s Congressional delegation to look into this matter. Why would the EPA consider giving them a new permit given their violations of the Clean Water Act?” asked Tiffany.

During the debate over new ferrous mining regulations for the State of Wisconsin, mining opponents repeatedly claimed that a proposed mine in Iron and Ashland counties would pollute Wisconsin’s waterways. EPA records have shown that e-coli levels in wastewater discharges from the Odanah treatment plant, a facility operated by these same opponents, either exceeded federal limits or were just not reported 42 times in a 57-month period.

In 2009, the EPA granted the Bad River Band Treatment as State (TAS) authority to set water quality standards within the Bad River watershed. This allows the tribe to set more stringent limitations on Wisconsinites, despite the demonstrated inability of Odanah to meet basic federal requirements itself. The EPA is currently weighing the possibility of granting air regulatory authority similar to the water TAS. “Is now the appropriate time to grant this authority given what has transpired at their wastewater facility?”Tiffany questioned. “Bureaucratic inconsistencies and double standards at the EPA have been the status quo for too long. The time has come for our federal representatives to start asking tough questions about their decision making process.”

The EPA’s public comment period for the discharge permit closes on Monday May 6, 2013. At this time there is no public hearing scheduled.
# # #

Sam Brownback Brushes off Eric Holder’s Opinions on 2nd Amendment Protection Act – Tenth Amendment Center Blog

Sam Brownback Brushes off Eric Holder’s Opinions on 2nd Amendment Protection Act – Tenth Amendment Center Blog

Bill Nullifying Acts Violating The Second Amendment Passes Missouri Senate 26-6 – Tenth Amendment Center Blog

Bill Nullifying Acts Violating The Second Amendment Passes Missouri Senate 26-6 – Tenth Amendment Center Blog

Kansas to Eric Holder: We’re Not Backing Down! – Tenth Amendment Center Blog

Kansas to Eric Holder: We’re Not Backing Down! – Tenth Amendment Center Blog

USS Mobile Bay Arrives in San Diego

Tourism spending rises in state : Wsj

Tourism spending rises in state : Wsj

Anchorage Completes Transit to Namesake City for Commissioning

Anchorage Completes Transit to Namesake City for Commissioning

ANCHORAGE, Alaska (May 1, 2013) George Holly, right, and Alaskans from villages around south central Alaska perform as the Ida'ina Dance Group during a welcoming ceremony for the San Antonio-class amphibious transport dock ship Pre-Commissioning Unit (PCU) Anchorage (LPD 23) at the Port of Anchorage. Anchorage is in its namesake city of Anchorage, Alaska for its commissioning ceremony May 4. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 1st Class James R. Evans/Released)


By Mass Communication Specialist 1st Class Aramis X. Ramirez, USS Anchorage (LPD 23) Public Affairs
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (NNS) -- The future San Antonio-class amphibious transport dock ship USS Anchorage (LPD 23) moored pierside, May 1, at the Port of Anchorage in her namesake city during a welcome ceremony hosted by officials from the Municipality of Anchorage.

The welcome ceremony kicks off a four-day celebration that will lead into the ship's commissioning, May 4, at the Port of Anchorage.

Anchorage Mayor Dan Sullivan, who spent the night on the ship after being flown on in an MV-22 Osprey, praised the crew on their hospitality and professionalism.

"I had a chance to meet these hardworking Sailors and Marines, and I am without a doubt impressed by their drive and devotion to their duty," he said. "We are humbled to have this opportunity to host the crew in our fine city and show them who they represent. We cannot thank them enough for their service."

During the welcome ceremony, the ship received a blessing from local Native Alaskans representing the various Deni'Ina and Athabascan villages that surround the municipality of Anchorage.

"We honor those who accept the responsibility for our care," said Dena'Ina Elder Alberta Stephen. "To us, this is simply returning the favor, and we pray for the safe keeping of those who keep us safe."

For a majority of the Sailors and Marines aboard, this is their first visit to Alaska's largest city and the furthest north they have traveled.

"It might take a few extra layers of clothes, but I'm definitely excited to be here and meet the people," said Seaman Michael Gakungu, who hails from Embu, Kenya. "Visiting new places, and seeing new people is why I joined the Navy. Anchorage, and Alaska in general, has intrigued me because it's so far from where I come from and we saw some beautiful mountains during the transit up."

Following the welcome ceremony, crewmember families and distinguished visitors, which included ship sponsor Annette Conway, were given a special tour of the ship.

The voyage to Alaska was filled with anticipation for the upcoming festivities, but the nine-day transit also offered an opportunity to prepare for the ship's post-commissioning events that will include final contract trials in July.

The ship is also host to more than 100 Sailors from various ships and pre-commissioning units in San Diego, giving them a chance to work on qualifications and training that can only be completed while underway.

"The partnership among the commands is what makes our Navy great," said Cmdr. Joel Stewart, commanding officer of Anchorage. "By taking care of each other, training each other and offering these avenues for learning, we make a better fleet. Just as the pre-commissioning units before us took care of Anchorage Sailors, now it's our turn."

Anchorage is the seventh San Antonio class amphibious transport dock. She was built at the Huntington Ingalls Industries Shipbuilding site in Avondale, La., and delivered to the U.S. Navy, Sept. 17. She is the second ship to be named for Alaska's most populous city.

For more information about USS Anchorage, visit our Web site at: http://www.public.navy.mil/surfor/lpd23/ Or visit us on Facebook: www.facebook.com/anchoragelpd23
>

For more news from USS ANCHORAGE (LPD 23), visit
www.navy.mil/local/LPD23/ .

Rand Paul 2016, More and More Obvious

Rand Paul 2016, More and More Obvious

U.S. military plane crashes in Kyrgyzstan - Washington Times

U.S. military plane crashes in Kyrgyzstan - Washington Times

Paul chief of staff moves to campaign role ahead of possible White House bid - The Hill's Ballot Box

Paul chief of staff moves to campaign role ahead of possible White House bid - The Hill's Ballot Box

Paul Ryan flip-flops, now supports gay adoption | LifeSiteNews.com

Paul Ryan flip-flops, now supports gay adoption | LifeSiteNews.com

Marines Conduct Combat Live-Fire Squad Assault Exercise

STRATFOR: Saudi Arabia's Demographic Challenge

FreedomWorks On Tap "Exclusive Interview with Gary Johnson"

Thursday, May 02, 2013

FreedomWorks On Tap "Defeating Common Core" Ft Glenn Beck

Release: Senator Grothman and Representative Kaufert Introduce Private School Tuition Tax Credit Proposal

Senator Grothman and Representative Kaufert Introduce Private School Tuition Tax Credit Proposal

Today Senator Glenn Grothman and Representative Dean Kaufert introduced legislation to provide a tax credit to parents for private school tuition expenses. This tax credit will give parents the ability to have an alternative to the public schools.

“Private schools throughout the state are struggling. Parents want options for their children and this tuition tax credit is a step forward in providing educational diversity in Wisconsin,” commented Grothman.

The bill will be phased in beginning taxable year 2014 starting at a $1,000 tax credit for parents of elementary students and a $1,500 tax credit for each child attending high school. The credit, when fully implemented, will be $1,500 for elementary children and $2,500 for high school students. This bill has been co-sponsored by 28 members of the legislature and has garnered widespread support throughout Wisconsin.

Kaufert added, “I am glad to be the co-author of this legislation in the Assembly. I have supported this tax credit for many years. Families in my district are eagerly awaiting the passage of this important piece of legislation.”

Historic meeting between Pope and first Russian ambassador to Vatican

Hayden K. Smith: The Battle Against Common Core Standards

The Battle Against Common Core Standards

By Hayden K. Smith on March 27, 2013

Quietly and almost without notice, an initiative which significantly erodes local and state control of school curriculum has passed in 46 states. The Common Core Standards Initiative sets Math and English curriculum in every participating state at the same level. In adopting this “common core” states are relinquishing their right to compose their own education requirements.

Only Alaska, Nebraska, Virginia, and the great state of Texas have refused adoption of the Common Core Standards. State legislators in Indiana, Georgia, Alabama, and South Dakota have introduced repeal measures, but it is so far unclear how successful these measures will be.

One state however has a very real chance to throw off the “one size fits all” standard and preserve a measure of independence in their curriculum. Which state would have the nerve, foresight, intelligence, and independent spirit required for such an effort? Michigan.

Continue: http://www.freedomworks.org/blog/rousseau/the-battle-against-common-core-standards?source=twitter

Pope welcomes Benedict XVI to the Vatican

ReasonTV: How Protectionism Hurts Hawaii: Why It's Time to Repeal the Jones Act


Speaker Robin Vos: Listening Sessions Monday!

Listening Sessions Monday!


There's a great deal happening at the Wisconsin State Capitol from the Joint Finance Committee taking votes on the state budget to the important bills being discussed. Next week the state Assembly will vote on AB 110 on Tuesday. It requires FoodShare recipients to select healthier food options with their taxpayer-funded benefits. On Wednesday, the Assembly will take a final vote on AB 85, which reforms the Milwaukee County Board. These are two examples of how Assembly Republicans continue to work to reform government and protect the interests of taxpayers. I invite you to watch both of these legislative sessions on WisconsinEye. We begin each session day at one o'clock.

I also want to remind you about my three listening sessions taking place in the district on Monday. The most important part of my job is to listen to my constituents and I want to hear your thoughts on Governor Walker's proposed budget. It's finally spring at the state Capitol: the tulips are about to bloom.

Listening Sessions, Monday, May 6th

Mt. Pleasant Village Hall, 12:30 p.m.-1:30 p.m.

Union Grove Village Hall, 2:30 p.m.-4:00 p.m.

Burlington City Hall, 5:00 p.m.- 6:00 p.m.

I hope you can attend one of the sessions. If you can't, I invite you to send your questions or concerns to Rep.Vos@legis.wi.gov or (608) 266-9171. I look forward to hearing from you soon.

Finally, my spring questionnaire has hit mailboxes throughout the district. Please take a moment to fill out the paper survey or take the survey on-line at my website, www.speakervos.com.

Enjoy your weekend!







UPDATE: Leaky Matagorda Island oil rig tank emptied

News Release

UPDATE: Leaky Matagorda Island oil rig tank emptied

CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas — The Sabco Operating Company has completed the safe removal of all liquids from a leaking holding tank, Thursday, about 5 miles off the coast of Matagorda Island, Texas.
 
The Coast Guard along with local, state, and federal agencies, stood up an incident management team to closely monitor the actions being taken by Sabco Operating Company and to ensure any environmental impact was minimized in response to the reported leak. All transfer operations have been completed without an oil sheen having been observed or reported.
 
By design, the tank consisted of more than 300,000 gallons of medium crude oil product that sat on more than 150,000 gallons of water, which acts as a buffer to prevent the release of oil in the event of a leak such as this. The oil platform had three replenishment pumps, each of which was able to replace the water in the tank faster than it was leaking. The leak was estimated at three-gallons-per-minute from the partially plugged half-inch size hole.
 
The oil barge Andrea 2604 arrived today at approximately 6:30 a.m. and completed the removal of all liquids from the tank at 1:50 p.m. Responders were on standby to quickly respond if needed throughout the removal process.
 
“We are extremely thankful that the response plans in place and coordinated efforts by all agencies involved and the responsible party went flawlessly with minimal impact, if any, to our environment,” said Coast Guard Capt. Randal Ogrydziak, the federal on-scene coordinator for the response. “The Coast Guard and the Texas General Land Office will be working with the Sabco Operating Company to ensure repairs and follow-on preventative measures are completed and in compliance with federal and state regulations.”
 
 
Coast Guard crews aboard the Cutter Amberjack and MH-65 Dolphin helicopters were on scene throughout the operation to validate that all proper actions were taken. The Coast Guard thanks the cooperation of all boaters in keeping a safe distance from the oil platform while responders worked to resolve this potential threat.
 
For more information, contact Lt. Cmdr. Brendan Evans at (361) 438-0176 or Mr. Tim O’Leary, on behalf of Sabco Operating Company, at (281) 352-7740.
###

USS ANCHORAGE UNDERWAY TIME LAPSE

OSPREY TIME LAPSE ON USS ANCHORAGE

Free Speech Sees Victory in Wisconsin Institute for Law and Liberty Lawsuit | MacIver Institute

Free Speech Sees Victory in Wisconsin Institute for Law and Liberty Lawsuit | MacIver Institute

U.S. Navy Photo of the Day



COOK INLET, Alaska (May 1, 2013) Sailors watch from the port bridge wing as the San Antonio-class amphibious transport dock ship USS Anchorage (LPD 23) approaches the city of Anchorage, Alaska. Anchorage is en route to its namesake city for its commissioning ceremony May 4. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 1st Class James R. Evans/Released)

Poll: Four in 10 Americans would give up civil liberties to fight terror - The Hill's Blog Briefing Room

Poll: Four in 10 Americans would give up civil liberties to fight terror - The Hill's Blog Briefing Room

Poll: 29% of Registered Voters Believe Armed Revolution Might Be Necessary in Next Few Years | CNS News

Poll: 29% of Registered Voters Believe Armed Revolution Might Be Necessary in Next Few Years | CNS News

Inside the Ring: Russia builds up, U.S. down - Washington Times

Inside the Ring: Russia builds up, U.S. down - Washington Times

USCCB official: FDA 'acted irresponsibly' in lowering age for contraceptives | National Catholic Reporter

USCCB official: FDA 'acted irresponsibly' in lowering age for contraceptives | National Catholic Reporter

Missionary Nun talks about Christians who flee from the Holy Land...and those who migrate there

STRATFOR: Continued Violence in the North Caucasus

FOUNDATION ACTION: Teacher Wins Settlement after Union Violated Her Constitutional Rights

Teacher Wins Settlement after Union Violated Her Constitutional Rights

Case demonstrates why Wisconsin reforms were need to protect state workers
 
GREENWOOD, WI - A former Greenwood, Wisconsin, teacher has won a settlement from a local teacher union and the school district for refusing to honor her constitutional rights and for failing to follow federal disclosure requirements.

Spanish teacher Amy Anaya taught in the School District of Greenwood for a year. When Anaya was first hired by the district in August 2011, Greenwood Education Association (GEA) union officials illegally told her that she “had to” sign the union’s membership form. When GEA union officials demanded Anaya join the union, she told them that she had no desire to become a union member.

Continue: http://www.nrtw.org/en/blog/foundation-action-teacher-wins-settlement-aft-4262013

MacIver Institute: Governor Scott Walker's Tax Cut Likely to Attract More Money to Wisconsin

Obama Continues His War on the Fourth Amendment

Obama Continues His War on the Fourth Amendment

BREAKING: Docs Show Janet Napolitano Thanked Missouri Governor For Breaking State Law – Tenth Amendment Center Blog

BREAKING: Docs Show Janet Napolitano Thanked Missouri Governor For Breaking State Law – Tenth Amendment Center Blog

U.S. Pacific Fleet Welcomes a New Fleet Master Chief

U.S. Pacific Fleet Welcomes a New Fleet Master Chief

PEARL HARBOR, Hawaii (April 30, 2013) Outgoing Fleet Master Chief John Minyard, left, pins the Fleet Master Chief insignia onto oncoming Fleet Master Chief Marco Ramirez during the Fleet Master Chief turnover as Adm. Cecil D. Haney, commander of U.S. Pacific Fleet presides over the ceremony. The world's largest fleet command, U.S. Pacific Fleet encompasses 100 million square miles from the west coast of the Unites States into the Indian Ocean. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 1st Class Amanda Dunford/Released)


By U.S. Pacific Fleet Public Affairs
PEARL HARBOR, Hawaii (NNS) -- Commander, U.S. Pacific Fleet welcomed a new fleet master chief at the Pacific Fleet headquarters in Pearl Harbor, April 30.

Command Master Chief Marco Ramirez officially relieved Fleet Master Chief John Minyard in a small ceremony attended by Adm. Cecil D. Haney, commander of U.S. Pacific Fleet.

"This job has been one of the most challenging jobs in the fleet, just because of the sheer area of responsibility," said Minyard. "We have 100 million square miles of ocean and commands from the east coast of the United States to the east coast of Africa. Every region and every area is different, but the one thing that hasn't changed is the dedication and commitment of our Sailors. That's what I think I'll miss the most."

Minyard, who reported in June 2009 after being the command master chief at U.S. 3rd Fleet, went on to talk about the constant changes in the Navy and his concerns for Sailors.

"Today's work environment is challenging. What the Sailors are doing each and every day is in the news. They're worried about the budget, about job security, the constant changes in personnel systems and programs," said Minyard. "It's easy for Sailors to become distracted from what their primary job is - being ready to go to sea and fight the next war."

Minyard who is retiring after 29 years of service, noted how much he enjoyed being the Pacific Fleet's fleet master chief.

"I enjoyed the challenge, but as I look back and reflect, I really enjoyed the Sailors," said Minyard. "Experiencing their views and challenges and being able to be a part of this extremely elite team."

He added that words will never express the appreciation he has for them and their families for what they do every day.

Prior to this assignment, Master Chief Ramirez served as the U.S. 6th Fleet command master chief in Naples, Italy.

"I'm proud to join this mighty team," said Ramirez. "I look forward to advancing our nation's interests across the Pacific Fleet with a focus on readiness."

The U.S. Pacific Fleet, the world's largest fleet command, encompasses 100 million square miles, more than half the Earth's surface, from the West Coast of the United Sates into the Indian Ocean. The Pacific Fleet consists of approximately 180 ships, nearly 2,000 aircraft and 140,000 Sailors and civilians.

For more information, visit www.navy.mil, www.facebook.com/usnavy, or www.twitter.com/usnavy.
>
For more news from Pacific Fleet, visit
www.navy.mil/local/cpf/

Marines Shoot Weapons in Latvia

Wednesday, May 01, 2013

Coast Guard, Texas General Land Office oversee response to leaking oil platform

News Release

Coast Guard, Texas General Land Office oversee response to leaking oil platform

http://www.dvidshub.net/news/106176/ http://www.dvidshub.net/news/106176/
A small leak is visible in this photo of the oil platform holding tank. U.S. Coast Guard photo.
 
CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas — Federal, state and local agencies and responders are working Wednesday to mitigate possible impact from an oil platform that has a small leak of water coming from a large tank that also contains crude oil and is located about 5 miles off Matagorda Island, Texas.

Tuesday, the Sabco Operating Company notified the Coast Guard of the leak on the bottom of a holding tank on Matagorda Island 629L fixed oil platform. The Coast Guard, partnering with local, state, and federal agencies, stood up an incident management team, to closely monitor the actions being taken by Sabco Operating Company and to ensure any environmental impact is minimized.
The tank consists of more than 300,000 gallons of medium crude oil product sitting on more than 150,000 gallons of water that acts as a buffer to prevent the release of product in the event a leak. Water is currently being pumped into the tank faster than the estimated three-gallon-per-minute release rate from the partially plugged half-inch size hole.

Sabco Operating Company arranged for the oil barge Andrea 2604 to arrive Thursday and is expected to have the product removed by Thursday afternoon. Responders are on standby to quickly respond if needed throughout the evolution.

“Although presently anticipated to have minimal impact to the environment, Coast Guard Sector Corpus Christi will be aggressively working with the responsible party and all of our partner agencies to properly execute the response to this potential threat,” said Coast Guard Capt. Randal Ogrydziak, the federal on scene coordinator for the response.

The incident management team consists of the Coast Guard, Texas General Land Office, Sabco Operating Company, Texas Parks and Wildlife Department, Texas Commission on Environmental Quality, U.S Fish and Wildlife Service, National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Administration, and the National Park Service.

The company has ceased all operations at the platform and is waiting for ultrasound testing of the material around the hole before attempting repairs to prevent further damage and greater discharge rates.

The Coast Guard Cutter Amberjack and Coast Guard MH-65 Dolphin helicopters will be on scene throughout this operation for crews to validate that all proper actions are being taken. The Coast Guard is asking all boaters to keep a safe distance of at least one half mile from the oil platform while responders work to resolve this potential threat.

For more information, contact Lt. Cmdr. Brendan Evans at (361) 438-0176 or Mr. Tim O’Leary, on behalf of Sabco Operating Company, at (281) 352-7740.
###

NASA Image of the Day

Springtime in the Bay of Biscay


Springtime in the Bay of Biscay, off the coast of France, as in most places, is a season of abundant growth. On April 20, 2013, the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) aboard NASA's Aqua satellite captured this true-color image of the dynamic growth of a springtime phytoplankton bloom.

The swirling colors indicate the presence of vast numbers of phytoplankton – tiny plant-like microorganisms that live in both fresh and salt water. Although these organisms live year-round in the Bay of Biscay, it is only when conditions are right that explosive blooms occur. In spring, the lengthening sunlight, the increased nutrient load swept into the Bay from ocean currents and from snowmelt carried by freshwater rivers, combined with warming waters create the perfect conditions to spur phytoplankton in to tremendous growth. The result is a swirling, multi-hued discoloration that can be easily seen from space.

Each year, typically from March through April, such blooms occur in the Bay of Biscay. By May, however, conditions are not as favorable and the blooms fade, then disappear.

Image Credit: NASA GSFC

Navy to Commission Amphibious Transport Dock Ship Anchorage

Navy to Commission Amphibious Transport Dock Ship Anchorage

GULF OF MEXICO (May 15, 2012) The amphibious transport dock ship Pre-Commissioning Unit (PCU) Anchorage (LPD 23) conducts builder's sea trials. (U.S. Navy photo courtesy of after Huntington Ingalls Industries/Released)



From Department of Defense
WASHINGTON (NNS) -- The Navy will commission amphibious transport dock ship, Anchorage, in her namesake city of Anchorage, Alaska, May 4, at 10 a.m. (AKDT), during a ceremony at the Port of Anchorage.

Anchorage is named in honor of the largest city in Alaska.

Adm. Cecil Haney, commander, U.S. Pacific Fleet, will deliver the ceremony's keynote address. Annette Conway, wife of retired Gen. James T. Conway, the 34th commandant of the Marine Corps, is serving as the ship's sponsor. In a time-honored Navy tradition, she will give the order to "man our ship and bring her to life!"

"Like the previous USS Anchorage, I am confident LPD 23 and her crew will represent the United States with distinction around the world for many decades to come," said Secretary of the Navy Ray Mabus. "As we execute our nation's defense strategy and our Marine Corps returns to its traditional maritime roots, the improved warfighting capability Anchorage brings to the fleet will be critical."

The first USS Anchorage (LSD 36) was commissioned in 1969, earning the Meritorious Unit Commendation and six battle stars for Vietnam service, receiving the Navy Unit Citation and the Southwest Asia Service Medal (2 stars) for Operation Desert Storm, and supporting Operation Iraqi Freedom. When decommissioned in 2003, the first USS Anchorage was the most decorated dock landing ship on the West Coast.

Designated LPD 23, Anchorage is the seventh amphibious transport dock ship in the San Antonio class. As an element of future expeditionary strike groups, the ship will support Marine Corps ship-to-shore mobility, which consists of the landing craft air cushion vehicle, amphibious assault vehicles and the Osprey tilt-rotor aircraft. Anchorage will provide improved warfighting capabilities, including an advanced command-and-control suite, increased lift-capability in vehicle and cargo-carrying capacity and advanced ship-survivability features. The ship is capable of embarking a landing force of up to 800 Marines.

Cmdr. Joel G. Stewart is the commanding officer and will lead a crew of more than 360 officers and enlisted Navy and Marine Corps personnel. The 24,900-ton Anchorage was built by Huntington Ingalls Industries - Avondale Shipyard in Louisiana. The ship is 684 feet in length, has an overall beam of 105 feet, and a navigational draft of 23 feet. Four turbo-charged diesels power the ship to sustained speeds in excess of 22 knots.

Media may direct queries to the Navy Office of Information at 703-697-5342. For additional information about this class of ship, please visit the Navy Fact File at http://www.navy.mil/navydata/fact_display.asp?cid=4200&tid=600&ct=4.

The commissioning will be streamed live at http://navylive.dodlive.mil.

USS Chosin Deploys

One of the most shocking videos ever shows huge Boeing 747 crashing after take off from Bagram

One of the most shocking videos ever shows huge Boeing 747 crashing after take off from Bagram

U.S. Navy Photo of the Day



NORFOLK (March 27, 2010) The Virginia-class nuclear attack submarine USS New Mexico (SSN 779) is the sixth Virginia-class submarine, commissioned during a ceremony at Naval Station Norfolk on March 27, 2010. New Mexico will homeported in Groton, Ct. (U.S. Navy photo by Alan Baribeau/Released)

Reason.tv: DIY Law Enforcement in Cash-Strapped Oregon County


WI DNR: Cash reward offered in poaching case; Wardens find decapitated bear in St. Croix County

Cash reward offered in poaching case; Wardens find decapitated bear in St. Croix County


Published: May 1, 2013 in Crime Stoppers

By: Bureau of Law Enforcement

A Wisconsin game organization is offering a $500 reward to the person whose tip to the DNR conservation wardens results in the conviction of the person or persons responsible for a February poaching of a black bear in St. Croix County.

DNR wardens were called about a dead bear discovered on February 24. The wardens found the body of the bear, which had been freshly killed and missing its head, in a ditch just off Rice Lake Road in Somerset Township.

Wardens report evidence at the scene indicates the bear was illegally shot while hibernating inside a culvert west of Star Prairie on County Highway H, then dragged from the culvert and taken to another location where its head was removed. Since the bear’s weight was estimated to be 250 to 300 pounds, the wardens say it would have taken more than one person to remove and to transport the bear.The Star Prairie Fish & Game organization is offering the cash reward, and says the tip must be made to the Department of Natural Resources. The organization will make its award through the DNR wardens. If you have any information related to this crime, please contact the DNR Hotline at 1-800-TIP-WDNR. Callers can remain anonymous.

If you have information regarding natural resource violations, please call: VIOLATION HOTLINE: 1-800-TIP-WDNR or 1-800-847-9367. The hotline is in operation 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Trained staff relay reported information to conservation wardens. Anyone who calls the Violation Hotline or provides information can remain anonymous.

Joint Prisoner of War/Missing in Action Accounting Command Honors Fallen Service Members

Democrats open wallets against Sanford in South Carolina House race - The Hill's Ballot Box

Democrats open wallets against Sanford in South Carolina House race - The Hill's Ballot Box

RGIII: Americans ‘Held Hostage By The Tyranny Of Political Correctness’ « CBS DC

RGIII: Americans ‘Held Hostage By The Tyranny Of Political Correctness’ « CBS DC

Every Clime and Place: Marines take part in cold weather training

Press Release: Johnson Calls for New Senate Hearings on Benghazi

May 01 2013

Johnson Calls for New Senate Hearings on Benghazi

Oshkosh, WI – Senator Ron Johnson (WI) made the following comments regarding the ongoing developments in the Benghazi terrorist attacks:

“During the hearing on Benghazi before the Senate Committee on Foreign Relations, I asked former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton why she made no effort to personally speak with participants who were on the ground during the course of the assault. She responded in part, ‘What difference at this point does it make?’ I think it makes a huge difference, then and now. In fact, eight months after Benghazi, too many important questions remain unanswered regarding the level of security leading up to the Benghazi assault, the Administration’s response during the attack and how the State Department and Administration reacted publicly after the attack.

"Press reports indicate that whistle-blowers who were on the ground have substantial information that can bring clarity to what happened in Benghazi for the American people. There are also news reports that some people feel intimidated by the Administration to remain silent.

"I was shocked that President Obama, in his press conference yesterday, revealed that he was ignorant of these developing events. This leads me to believe that this administration has no interest in providing answers to the American people. The House will be conducting new hearings on May 8th. I strongly urge the Senate to hold new hearings on Benghazi and include in those hearings people who were on the ground in Libya during the attacks.”

###

USS Chosin Departs for Western Pacific Deployment

USS Chosin Departs for Western Pacific Deployment

By Mass Communication Specialist 3rd Class Dustin W. Sisco
PEARL HARBOR (NNS) -- Sailors aboard the Hawaii-based Ticonderoga-class guided-missile cruiser USS Chosin (CG 65) departed their home port of Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam (JBPHH) April 30 for a scheduled Western Pacific deployment.

While deployed, Chosin is scheduled to conduct theater security operations with partner nations while providing deterrence, promoting peace and security, preserving freedom of the seas and providing humanitarian assistance/disaster response.

"A little over a year ago I realized a lifelong dream when I assumed command of this mighty warship and its exceptional crew," said Chosin Commanding Officer Capt. Patrick Kelly. "The crew of Chosin has prepared well for this deployment. We are trained, we are focused, and we are ready to operate forward."

Kelly added, "We are privileged to be part of the Navy's presence in the Asia-Pacific Region and to represent Surface Group MIDPAC and U.S. Pacific Fleet. We look forward to operating with our allies, partners and friends in the months ahead, wherever we are needed."

Seaman Victor Pass, assigned to Chosin, expressed his feelings toward going on his first deployment.

"I know a lot of people that got to say bye to their families, and it's going to be real hard on them, I'm sure," said Pass. "But we're getting ready to go on deployment, so we're pretty excited, kind of nervous, but we're doing a good thing for this country, so it's worth it."

Chosin is one of 11 surface ships of Commander, Naval Surface Group Middle Pacific. USS Chosin is the first U.S. Navy warship named in commemoration of the First Marine Division's heroism at the Chosin Reservoir in the Korean War. The ship's motto is "Invictus," Latin for invincible or unconquered.

"The fine team aboard USS Chosin, led by Capt. Kelly, is well-trained, well-equipped and exceptionally capable of carrying out their mission," said Rear Adm. Fernandez Frank Ponds, commander of Navy Region Hawaii and Naval Surface Group Middle Pacific. "They have my complete confidence. I also want to recognize and thank the family members and shipmates here on the waterfront for their support of this fine warship and all that she stands for", Ponds said.

"USS Chosin represents our commitment to the CNO's (Chief of Naval Operations) Sailing Directions: Warfighting first, operate forward, be ready," added Ponds.

U.S. Navy guided-missile cruisers perform primarily multi-mission [Air Warfare (AW), Undersea Warfare (USW), Naval Surface Fire Support (NSFS) and Surface Warfare (SUW)] surface combatants capable of supporting carrier strike groups, amphibious forces, or of operating independently and as flagships of surface action groups.

Commander, U.S. Naval Surface Group Middle Pacific leads and manages the overall warfighting capability of the Surface Combatant Force homeported at JBPHH to achieve the highest levels of combat readiness; to coordinate with external organizations for products and services to directly support Surface Combatant Force mission readiness; and to support the Type Commanders and Numbered Fleet Commanders in the development of Surface Warfare requirements, policies, programs, standards, and business practices to meet operational readiness goals.

For more news from Navy Public Affairs Support Element West, Det. Hawaii, visit www.navy.mil/local/pacenhawaii/.

RIA Novosti: In a First, a Russian Warship Docks in Israel

RIA NovostiIn a First, a Russian Warship Docks in IsraelIn a First, a Russian Warship Docks in Israel
15:39 01/05/2013 Russia’s large landing ship Azov entered the Israeli port of Haifa on Wednesday, marking the first time a Russian warship calls at an Israeli port.>>

WI DNR - Wardens: Legal use of Alabama, Umbrella rigs in state rests with use

Wardens: Legal use of Alabama, Umbrella rigs in state rests with use


Published: April 30, 2013 in Outdoor Recreation
By: Joanne M. Haas/Bureau of Law Enforcement


Alabama fishing rig
Alabama fishing rig
 
Wisconsin conservation wardens again are fielding questions from anglers wondering if the Alabama Fishing Rig and the Umbrella Fishing Rig are legal to use in this state. The answer remains the same as it was during the 2012 season. It depends upon how you use these rigs.

The Alabama Fishing Rig or Umbrella Rig involves one fishing line that has five separate baits or lures attached. Each has its own single hook. In the water, the rig simulates a small school of bait fish and is capable of catching multiple fish at one time.

Wisconsin rules restrict anglers to no more than three hooks, three baits or three lures. That means this rig would not be legal to use in Wisconsin if the angler has a separate hook, bait or lure attached to each of the five wires as shown in advertisements and You-Tube videos.

However, the rig would be legal if not more than three hooks, baits or lures are attached. An angler then could place hookless spinners to the other two wires if desired. Remember, though, if three hooks, baits or lures are attached to this rig, you would not be allowed to fish with any other lines at the same time.

This type of fishing rig is different than using a single lure with multiple treble hooks which is designed to catch just one fish. Largemouth bass, northern or musky type lures equipped with multiple hooks are considered a single hook, bait or lure, just as a treble hook is considered a single hook for the purposes of the Wisconsin three-hook, three-bait or three-lure restriction.

A rig like the Alabama rig is different in that it uses multiple separate one hook lures all attached to one line, each of which has the ability to catch a different fish.

Interior increases estimate of oil potential in Dakotas, Montana | McClatchy

Interior increases estimate of oil potential in Dakotas, Montana | McClatchy

Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Case Worker: Illegal Aliens Got Food Stamps by the “Vanload” | Judicial Watch

Case Worker: Illegal Aliens Got Food Stamps by the “Vanload” | Judicial Watch

For decades the U.S. government has knowingly given illegal immigrants food stamps, according to a former certification case worker who denounced the costly practice back in the 1980s but was essentially ordered to keep a lid on it.

The retired assistant case manager, Craig McNees, was in charge of vetting food-stamp applicants in north Florida and Indiana in the ’80s and says the program was infested with fraud and corruption that was perpetually ignored by management. “Illegals would come in by the vanload and we were told to give them their stuff,” McNees said. “Management knew very well they were illegal. It was so rampant that some employees would tell their illegal relatives to come get food stamps.”

Continue: http://www.judicialwatch.org/blog/2013/04/case-worker-illegal-aliens-got-food-stamps-by-the-vanload/

‘Obamacare’ Poll Finds 42% of Americans Unaware It’s Law

‘Obamacare’ Poll Finds 42% of Americans Unaware It’s Law: A new poll finds that many Americans are confused about the health care overhaul legislation commonly called “Obamacare.” The Kaiser Family Foundation released results of a non-partisan study today finding more than 40 percent did not even know the law was in place. “Four in...

A Libertarian Case for Expanding Gun Background Checks? I Am Still Waiting to Hear One.

A Libertarian Case for Expanding Gun Background Checks? I Am Still Waiting to Hear One.

Ontonagon: Coast Guard Helps In Rescue

Wis U.P. North  Ontonagon: Coast Guard Helps In Rescue

U.S. Navy Photo of the Day



PACIFIC OCEAN (July 17, 2012) The aircraft carrier USS Nimitz (CVN 68) comes alongside the Military Sealift Command fleet replenishment oiler USNS Henry J. Kaiser (T-AO 187) to receive biofuel during the Great Green Fleet demonstration portion of the Rim of the Pacific (RIMPAC) 2012 exercise. Nimitz took on 200,000 gallons of biofuel in preparation for the Great Green Fleet demonstration during Rim of the Pacific (RIMPAC) 2012. Twenty-two nations, more than 40 ships and submarines, more than 200 aircraft and 25,000 personnel are participating in RIMPAC exercise from June 29 to Aug. 3, in and around the Hawaiian Islands. The world's largest international maritime exercise, RIMPAC provides a unique training opportunity that helps participants foster and sustain the cooperative relationships that are critical to ensuring the safety of sea lanes and security on the world's oceans. RIMPAC 2012 is the 23rd exercise in the series that began in 1971. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class Eva-Marie Ramsaran/Released)

The USS Anchorage Will Be Here Tomorrow for Commissioning Ceremony

Way Up North: The USS Anchorage Will Be Here Tomorrow for Commis...: From KTUU-TV , Anchorage: A new Navy ship named after Alaska’s largest city is a few days away from its arrival here, with plans to...

WIDNR: Fire season is here! Several counties set high fire danger risk today

Published: April 30, 2013 in Outdoor Recreation
By: Joanne M. Haas/Bureau of Law Enforcement & Division of Forestry

Wardens, Foresters say today's breezy, dry conditions elevate fire risks

Several counties today declared fire danger as high or very high in addition to suspending fire permits in some central counties as wildfire season arrives with breezy conditions.

That's the word from DNR wildfire experts who join DNR conservation wardens in urging everyone to be aware of today's summer-like conditions with changing winds in front of a cold front which could fuel erratic fire behavior.

"Please avoid burning and keep a close on eye on burning restrictions," DNR Wildfire Prevention Specialist Catherine Koele says. "Also please remain aware of the fire danger as conditions change quickly."

Wardens ask everyone working outdoors or in the woods to remain alert to these fire risk conditions. Roughly half of the state is experiencing high to very high fire risk today. To see which counties, please visit this website:

http://dnr.wi.gov/topic/ForestFire/restrictions.asp

"This April is one of the lowest on record for wildfire activity," Koele says. "The late start to the fire season is due to the snow and rains."
Strong southwest winds and temperatures in
 the 70s and 80s will be in advance of a cold front, which is expected to move across the state that will shift the winds to the northwest.

To learn more, visit: dnr.wi.gov and search keyword, fire.

Release: Coast Guard hosts memorial run in Baltimore helping families in need

News Release

Coast Guard hosts memorial run in Baltimore helping families in need

http://www.dvidshub.net/image/916948/coast-guard-yard-baltimore-hosts-fifth-annual-nate-bruckenthal-memorial-run
Nate’s Run: Run in freedom, for freedom
By PA1 Tasha Tully

The 5th Annual Nate Bruckenthal Memorial Run was held at the Coast Guard Yard in Baltimore April 27. More than 80 people participated in the five-kilometer event in honor of Coast Guard Petty Officer 3rd Class Nathan Bruckenthal. Bruckenthal was killed in Iraq in 2004.

Each year the event is coordinated by the Coast Guard Yard’s Morale, Well-being and Recreation Program, the Chief Warrant Officers Association, the Chief Petty Officers Association, the Coast Guard Enlisted Association and the Greater Baltimore Area Coast Guard Spouses Association. 
 
“This is the second year in a row that we have brought a group from [Coast Guard] Station Philadelphia,” said Petty Officer 1st Class Michael Lennox, a maritime enforcement specialist. “Though I didn’t know Nate, I worked in the same unit that he did in Miami and I feel like I had to come to honor him.”

Awards and prizes were given to the top two male and female finishers in the following age categories: 15 & under, 16-18, 19-29, 30-39, 40-49, 50-59, 60 and over. The best overall times for male and female runners will have their name placed on a plaque in the Coast Guard Yard Galley.
“I came to support a good cause,” said overall winner Matt Franco of Baltimore. “It is a nice event every year.”

All proceeds from the run will go to support Nate’s Open Door, a non-profit baby pantry that helps military members and civilian employees in the Baltimore area.

http://www.dvidshub.net/image/917068/bruckenthal-family-visits-nates-open-door

Nate’s Open Door pantry

By PA1 Tasha Tully
Coast Guard Petty Officer 3rd Class “Nate” B. Bruckenthal, a damage controlman, was killed April 24, 2004, while serving a second deployment in Iraq during Operation Iraqi Freedom. Nate was killed along with two Navy petty officers, Petty Officer 1st Class Michael Pernaselli, of Monroe, N.Y., and Petty Officer 2nd Class Christopher Watts, of Knoxville, Tenn., when the group intercepted a waterborne suicide attack on the Khawr Al Amaya Oil Terminal off the coast of Iraq. Nate was the first Coast Guardsman to be killed during wartime since the Vietnam War.

“Nate’s Open Door was started in Baltimore in 2004 by [Coast Guard] Chief Petty Officer Teresa Padilla, Chaplain Michael Tomlinson and me,” said co-founder Ramona Vazquez. “I knew Nate when we worked together in Miami. Since then I have become very close with his family and I learned what an incredible humanitarian he was.”

Nate’s wife, Pattie, was pregnant with their daughter, Harper, at the time Nate was killed. Pattie’s sudden loss and unforeseen hardship inspired Vazquez to continue assisting struggling families.
“I am a Coast Guard wife and we are a Coast Guard family, and I understand needing help from time to time and having no family nearby,” confessed Vazquez. “Nate’s Open Door just helps take the edge off the financial struggle for those who need it.”

With support from the command at the Coast Guard Yard in Baltimore, Nate’s Open Door moved from being a closet in the chaplain’s office to its current location, a large room, near the exchange at the yard in 2005. The Open Door is run by the Greater Baltimore Area Coast Guard Spouse Association.

“Everything is offered to families for free, no strings attached. Another thing is that the doors are always open, we never lock them,” said Vazquez. “Nate’s father, Ric, once said ‘When one door closes, another door opens.’ He was referring to his son’s death, and the birth of his new granddaughter, but we feel that it may be true for the pantry too. It can be difficult for some families to accept help and we keep the doors open so that people can maintain anonymity if they want to.”
The pantry offers baby clothes from zero months to 6T, along with furniture, diapers, wipes and other donated items. 
 
“It is also an exchange,” added Vazquez. “When you’re done using the clothes, and if they are still in good condition, you can exchange them for the next size up.”

Donations to Nate’s Open Door are always needed and always welcome. For more information on how you can contribute, visit http://www.coastguardspouseassociation.org/WhatWeDo/NatesOpenDoorPantryandExchange.aspx

###

Monday, April 29, 2013

Stennis Strike Group Arrives In San Diego

Stennis Strike Group Arrives In San Diego

PACIFIC OCEAN (April 28, 2013) Sailors celebrate as the last aircraft prepares for launch on the flight deck aboard the aircraft carrier USS John C. Stennis (CVN 74). The John C. Stennis Carrier Strike Group, consisting of John C. Stennis, Carrier Air Wing (CVW) 9, Destroyer Squadron 21 and the guided-missile cruiser USS Mobile Bay (CG 53), is returning from an eight-month deployment to the U.S. 5th and 7th Fleet areas of responsibility. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist Seaman Apprentice Ignacio D. Perez/Released)


By Commander, U.S. Third Fleet Public Affairs
SAN DIEGO (NNS) -- The John C. Stennis Strike Group (JCSSG) returned to San Diego Apr. 29, marking the end of a successful deployment for Carrier Air Wing (CVW) 9 and the guided-missile cruiser USS Mobile Bay (CG 53) to the U.S. Navy's 5th and 7th Fleet areas of responsibility (AOR).

While deployed, JCSSG conducted theater security operations with partner nations in the Western Pacific and U.S. Central Command AOR while providing deterrence, promoting peace and security, preserving freedom of the seas and providing humanitarian assistance/disaster response.

JCSSG steamed more than 66,000 nautical miles, conducted 28 replenishments at sea and flew more than 10,000 sorties totaling 30,400 flight hours during their eight-month deployment.

"We know we made a positive difference," said Capt. Dell Bull, commander of CVW-9. "We leave with our heads held high knowing that our fellow service men and women on the ground in Afghanistan depended on us and we never let them down. I could not be more proud of this air wing and the professionalism and dedication they've shown throughout our back-to-back deployments."

Mobile Bay served as the air defense commander for Stennis during JCSSGs deployment where they supported maritime security operations and participated in theater security cooperation exercises.

"I am extremely proud of the collective accomplishments and sacrifices of this team and everything they have done from preparation through execution of their eight-month surge deployment," said Capt. Timothy Kott, the ship's commanding officer. "To a person, they have exhibited great resiliency, morale, and a selfless commitment to the success of each other. Equally important to the success of Mobile Bay are the amazing families and friends who have supported their Sailors through everything they have experienced in the past 14 months. This day, homecoming, truly belongs to them."

The Nimitz-class aircraft carrier USS John C. Stennis' (CVN 74) will stop in San Diego before returning to her homeport at Naval Base Kitsap in Bremerton, Wash.
USS John C. Stennis Carrier Strike Group consists of USS John C. Stennis, CVW-9, Destroyer Squadron (DESRON) 21 and guided-missile cruiser USS Mobile Bay (CG 53).

CVW 9 is based at Naval Air Station Lemoore, Calif., and leads nine squadrons: Strike Fighter Squadron (VFA) 41 "Black Aces," VFA-14 "Tophatters," VFA-97 "Warhawks,"" VFA-192 "World Famous Golden Dragons," Electronic Attack Squadron (VAQ) 133 "Wizards," Carrier Airborne Early Warning Squadron (VAW) 112 "The Golden Hawks," Fleet Logistics Support Squadron (VRC) 30 "Providers," Helicopter Sea Combat Squadron (HSC) 8 "Eightballers," and Helicopter Maritime Strike Squadron (HSM) 71 "Raptors."

U.S. Third Fleet leads naval forces in the Eastern Pacific from the West Coast of North America to the international date line.

For more information on the JCSSG, visit www.stennis.navy.mil or www.facebook.com/stennis74
>
For more news from Commander, U.S. 3rd Fleet, visit
www.navy.mil/local/c3f/.

USS Chosin Ready to Deploy, Operate Forward

USS Chosin Ready to Deploy, Operate Forward



By Naval Surface Group Middle Pacific Public Affairs
JOINT BASE PEARL HARBOR-HICKAM (NNS) -- Sailors aboard the Hawaii-based Ticonderoga-class guided-missile cruiser USS Chosin (CG 65) will depart Pearl Harbor April 30 for a scheduled Western Pacific deployment.

While deployed, Chosin will conduct theater security operations with partner nations while providing deterrence, promoting peace and security, preserving freedom of the seas and providing humanitarian assistance/disaster response.

"A little over a year ago I realized a lifelong dream when I assumed command of this mighty warship and its exceptional crew," said Chosin Commanding Officer Capt. Patrick Kelly. "The crew of Chosin have prepared well for this deployment. We are trained, we are focused, and we are ready to operate forward."

Kelly added, "We are privileged to be part of the Navy's presence in the Asia-Pacific Region and to represent Surface Group MIDPAC and U.S. Pacific Fleet. We look forward to operating with our allies, partners and friends in the months ahead -- wherever we are needed."

Chosin is one of 11 surface ships of Commander, Naval Surface Group Middle Pacific. USS Chosin is the first U.S. Navy warship named in commemoration of the First Marine Division's heroism at the Chosin Reservoir in the Korean War. The ship's motto is "invictus," Latin for invincible or unconquered.

U.S. Navy guided-missile cruisers perform primarily multi-mission [Air Warfare (AW), Undersea Warfare (USW), Naval Surface Fire Support (NSFS) and Surface Warfare (SUW)] surface combatants capable of supporting carrier strike groups, amphibious forces, or of operating independently and as flagships of surface action groups.

For more information about USS Chosin, visit www.chosin.navy.mil
>
For more news from Commander, Navy Region Hawaii, visit
www.navy.mil/local/cnrh/.

Pope to visit world's largest Marian shrine at Aparecida during WYD trip to Brazil

RIA Novosti: First Project 11356 Frigate to Join Russian Navy Next Year

RIA NovostiFirst Project 11356 Frigate to Join Russian Navy Next YearFirst Project 11356 Frigate to Join Russian Navy Next Year
11:53 29/04/2013 Russia's first Project 11356 frigate, the Admiral Grigorovich, will join the Black Sea Fleet in 2014, Vice-Admiral Alexander Fedotenkov said on Monday.>>

E-update From Rep. Jeff Mursau

eUpdate – April 29, 2013
 
 
 
 
 
The Legislative Fiscal Bureau reported last week that the UW Madison reserve funds almost doubled since 2009, mainly from tuition revenues. At the same time, the UW System raised tuition at a 5.5 percent annual rate, the highest allowed by law.
The state’s fiscal bureau found that the surplus grew to $648 million in 2012, including $207 million without a specific funding destination.
 
 
UW System Program Revenue Appropriation Balances
 
Since the news broke last week, there has been much discussion as to what will happen with the UW system in regards to tuition and the $181 million that was request in the Governor's proposal. To sum it up, members from both sides of the aisle are in favor of a two-year tuition freeze. As for the $181 million, some Senators have come out saying to take it all and others are taking a more "wait until we have more information" approach. Here are some issues you should keep in mind. Please keep in mind that if the legislature uses the $181 million to help fund any other program, it will increase Wisconsin’s structural deficit because it is "one-time" money as a tuition freeze will prevent this money from re-accumulating.
 
 
 
Budget Updates
 
The first Executive Session was able to cut bonding by $50 million and eliminate 33 vacant positions at the DNR.
The JFC will continue its votes on the budget bill Tuesday, with the Department of Transportation, Department of Veterans Affairs, WHEDA, the Wisconsin Historical Society, State Fair Park, the Board on Aging and Long-Term Care, the Board for People with Developmental Disabilities, and budget management and compensation reserves.
Items voted on in Joint Finance’s first Executive Session:
· Child Abuse and Neglect Prevention Board
· Military Affairs
· Environmental Improvement Fund
· Natural Resources – Department wide
· Board of Commissioners of Public Lands
· Fox River Navigational System Authority
· Lower Wisconsin State Riverway Board
· Tourism
The following reductions were made to the Governor’s proposed budget:
· $3.1 million all funds
o $800,000 in GPR
· 33.1 positions
· $52 million in overall bonding
 
Investment Capital Bill
 
This bi-partisan bill would create a state-leveraged “fund of funds” to invest in some of Wisconsin’s most promising early stage companies. The Investment Capital legislation will set the stage for a $25 million state investment in a fund that would require a 2-to-1 private investment match over time.
Modeled after similar funds in other states, the fund will spur company creation and job growth while building safeguards to protect the interests of taxpayers.
Targeted growth sectors:
  • Agriculture – Examples are food processing; packaging and safety; urban agriculture; sustainable production; field surveillance and crop management.
  • Information Technology – Examples are software; mobile applications; computing systems; internet networking; electronic health records and medical informatics.
  • Engineered Products – Examples are nanotechnology; materials science; controls, circuits and processors; energy generation and conservation; natural resource management.
  • Advanced Manufacturing – Examples are product and process design and improvement; robotics; automated systems; composite materials; power systems; RFID and supply chain integration.
  • Medical Devices and Imaging – Examples are devices include instruments, implants and apparatus used to diagnose, prevent or treat disease or other conditions. Imaging includes techniques and processes (such as X-rays, MRIs and CAT scans) used to create images of the human body, or its parts and functions, to reveal diagnose or examine disease.
 
Around the Country
 
All five living past and present U.S. presidents gathered in Dallas for the dedication of the George W. Bush Presidential Library and Museum Thursday, an event that saw the men share a rare bond that transcends partisan differences. "There was a time in my life when I wasn't likely to be found at a library, much less found one," Bush quipped, before thanking his predecessors and successor for the "kind words" and the "examples you set."
Former President Bush thanked his mother Barbara Bush for teaching him to live life to the fullest, and his father, the 41st president, for "teaching me how to be a president ... and how to be a man."
The House Judiciary Committee announced Thursday that it would introduce a series of bills beginning this week to overhaul the nation’s immigration system. The House bill will probably offer a 15-year path to citizenship, rather than the 13-year path offered in the Senate plan, though both bills would allow immigrants to earn a green card in 10 years. Immigration bills stemming from the House are widely expected to adopt a more conservative approach than what was put forward in the Democratically-held Senate.
 
 
Interesting Reads of the Week
 
Wall Street Journal: The Evil in Boston