Thursday, March 21, 2013
The rent-to-own industry has fought for decades to free itself from some provisions of Wisconsin law, spending money on campaign donations and lobbying to do so—and it appears the work may be paying off.
For more than two decades, the rent-to-own industry, which leases such goods as televisions, appliances and furniture, has been fighting to free itself from certain provisions of Wisconsin law. Throughout, it has lubricated the gears of change with campaign donations and lobbying outlays. “It’s something you have to do — what everybody does,” says Jeff Lebakken, president of the Wisconsin Rental Dealers Association, the main group pushing this change. Lebakken, the owner of an Eau Claire-based rent-to-own company with 11 state stores, has given more than $33,000 to Wisconsin political candidates since 1999, according to the Wisconsin Democracy Campaign’s searchable database. Overall, an analysis shows $235,000 in donations of $100 or more…
Monday, February 18, 2013
Most of the cash in high court campaign will spent by conservative and liberal outside groups — not the candidates themselves.
On Tuesday, Wisconsin will hold a primary election for state Supreme Court, narrowing the field from three candidates to two. Then the race will begin in earnest. Justice Patience Roggensack, who has already served one 10-year term on the state’s highest court, is expected to survive the cut. Her challengers are Ed Fallone, a Marquette University Law School professor, and Vince Megna, a Milwaukee lawyer specializing in suing auto companies. The general election is April 2. Between Jan. 1 and Feb. 4, according to the most recent reporting, Roggensack had raised about $200,000, compared to Fallone’s $75,000 and Megna’s $0. Roggensack reported having $219,154 cash on hand, compared to Fallone’s $63,713 and Megna’s $5,340. Most of Megna’s …
Thursday, January 24, 2013
Backers and opponents of mining legislation filled a more than 100-seat hearing room and two overflow rooms in the Capitol to be heard on the prospect of a mine in the state.
Last March, one Republican lawmaker held up passage of a GOP-backed bill that would have paved the way for construction of an iron ore mine in northern Wisconsin. With a majority in the state Assembly and Senate this legislative session, GOP lawmakers labeled mining legislation a top priority and began their push with an all-day public hearing Wednesday. Backers and opponents of the mining legislation filled a more than 100-seat hearing room in the Capitol and two overflow rooms to be heard on the prospect of a mine in the state, according to the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. Those backing the legislation say it would bring jobs to a local economy that currently doesn’t offer many opportunities, while the opposing faction says the bill …
Monday, January 21, 2013
Pewaukee police chief is one of five candidates running in special primary election on Feb. 19.
Monday, January 21
Name: Ed Baumann Address: 1010 N. Shore Drive, Pewaukee Age: 60 Occupation: Village of Pewaukee police chief Family: Fiancee, Betty; three sons How long have you lived in district? 21 years Have you held political office? No Related experience:
Project manager who has lived in district for more than 30 years makes first attempt for public office.
Monday, January 21
Name: Todd Greenwald Address: 835 Laureate Drive, Pewaukee Age: 40 Occupation: Project/account manager Family: Married with 7-year-old daughter How long have you lived in district? Over 30 years Have you held political office? No Related experience: Lake Park Home Owners Association Board member, including president for one year.
Former stockbroker and longtime Waukesha County resident seeks Assembly seat in Feb. 19 GOP special primary election.
Monday, January 21
Name: Matt Morzy Address: 2321 Imperial Lane, Waukesha Age: 29 Occupation: Candidate; former stockbroker Family: Married to Abbie; no children How long have you lived in district? Less than one year; 12 years in Waukesha County Have you held political office? No Related experience: Member, Pewaukee Kiwanis; licensed stockbroker and registered principle
Active volunteer is seeking her first elective office in special GOP primary on Feb. 19.
Monday, January 21
Name: Jeanne Tarantino Address: 204 Dairy Ave., Waukesha Age: 48 Occupation: Candidate for state Assembly Family: Single; three children ages 13, 15, 16 How long have you lived in district? 22 years Have you held political office? No Related experience: Active parent volunteer at St. William’s Elementary School and Bethesda Elementary School in Waukesha, helping in classroom, organizing annual silent auction fundraisers, Kenya sister school liaison
Tuesday, January 15, 2013
Republican governor doubles down on goal to create 250,000 jobs by 2015 in his State of the State address, but Democrats remain skeptical.
Vowing to "put more money in the hands of the hard-working taxpayers," Gov. Scott Walker Tuesday night promised to push for middle-class tax cuts and double downed on his pledge to create 250,000 jobs by 2015. Addressing the state Legislature in his annual State of the State message, Walker acknowledged that Wisconsin is still a long way off meeting the jobs goal that he campaigned on in 2010. He noted that others have pointed out "plenty of reasons" why job creation in the state has been difficult, including the slow recovery at the national level and well as ongoing concerns about the impact of the Affordable Care Act. "But in Wisconsin, we don't make excuses... We get results," the governor said. To move in that direction, Walker urged …
Thursday, December 27, 2012
From Scott Walker emerging as the only governor to survive a recall and Paul Ryan being selected as Mitt Romney's running mate for president, a national spotlight shined bright on Wisconsin this year.
Divisive — from recalls to recounts, it became a buzzword for Wisconsin politics in 2012. A national spotlight shined bright on Wisconsin this year, as it was a historic one for politics. Scott Walker became the first governor in U.S. history to survive a recall. U.S. Rep. Paul Ryan of Janesville became a national household name after being selected as Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney's running mate and state voters elected Tammy Baldwin to fill Herb Kohl's seat, making in her the first openly gay woman in the U.S. Senate. On the heels of a slew of recall elections and large-scale protests on the steps of the state Capitol building, the year kicked off with more recall attempts, including one aimed at Gov. Scott Walker. …
Wednesday, December 19, 2012
Even though Republican governor raised the idea last month, he said the cost of eliminating same-day voter registration makes it a non-starter.
Gov. Scott Walker on Wednesday apparently drove the final nail into the coffin of calls to end same-day voter registration in Wisconsin, vowing to veto any such bill that imposed additional costs. “If it has a price tag, absolutely,” Walker told the Wisconsin Center for Investigative Journalism in an interview at the Executive Residence, when asked if he would use his veto pen. “There’s no way we’re spending money on something like that." The idea of ending same-day voter registration gained currency after Walker made a speech in California last month in which he suggested ending the state’s practice of letting voters register on Election Day, citing the burden it placed on poll workers. Two Republican lawmakers began seeking sponsors on a…