State Senator Mary Lazich (R-New Berlin) represents parts of four counties: Milwaukee, Waukesha, Racine, and Walworth. Her Senate District 28 includes New Berlin, Franklin, Greendale, Hales Corners, Muskego, Waterford, Big Bend, the town of Vernon and parts of Greenfield, East Troy, and Mukwonago. Senator Lazich has been in the Legislature for more than a decade. She considers herself a tireless crusader for lower taxes, reduced spending and smaller government.
Here is a press release issued by Ament Industrial Truck and the New Berlin Chamber of Commerce:
Once again this year Ament Industrial Truck and The New Berlin Chamber of Commerce & Visitors Bureau will be working closely with The United States Marine Corps Reserve, the Marine Corps League Badger Detachment, FM 106, CBS 58 and The Salvation Army in their TOYS for TOTS Program for 2007. Each year, the generosity of individuals, families and businesses make it possible to serve thousands of needy children in Southeastern Wisconsin. For most of these kids it’s the one bright spot in their holiday. So, while you’re out Christmas shopping this year pick up some extra toys for children who need your help. Starting November 6th you can drop off the NEW toys, unwrapped, at our office located at 2140 South Calhoun Road, New Berlin. Our office hours are weekdays from 7:30 AM to 4:30 PM. We ask that all donations be dropped off by December 14th so we have time to deliver them to the Toys for Tots distribution center.
If you cannot drop off your donation, please feel free to contact us at 262-785-9890 and we will be happy to pick them up.
So please do it soon. Together lets make this the biggest year yet.
To make a monetary contribution, make your check payable to “Marine Toys for Tots Foundation”
They can be dropped off at our office or mailed to us at:
Ament Industrial Truck
2140 S. Calhoun Rd.
New Berlin, WI 53151
God Bless You and Merry Christmas!
Ament Industrial Truck
New Berlin Chamber of Commerce & Visitors Bureau, Board of Directors
7th District Alderman, New Berlin
Understand, there is nothing wrong with parades and Packer games. However, we need to remember that Thanksgiving is much more
Like Christmas, the Thanksgiving holiday is under attack from those who wish to tarnish its tradition, even questioning its very origin.
Sadly, some historians are claiming the first Thanksgiving was not a religious gathering to give praise. The contention is that in 1621, the Pilgrims partied with a large feast. When shots were fired to add to the celebration, nearby natives crashed the festivities.
I prefer the thoughts of Yale professor David Gelernter who wrote the following in the Wall Street Journal in 2004:
“The First Thanksgiving is one of those heartwarming stories that every child used to know, and some up-to-date teachers take special delight in suppressing. It is especially sad when children don't learn the history of Thanksgiving, which is that rarest of anomalies--a religious festival celebrated by many faiths. The story of the first Thanksgiving would inspire and soothe this nation if only we would let it--this nation so deeply divided between Christians and non-Christians or nominal Christians, where Christians are a solid majority on a winning streak and many non-Christians are scared to death, of "Christian fundamentalists" especially.
Christian fundamentalists were the first European settlers in this country, and Thanksgiving is their idea. Many Americans are afraid that fundamentalists are inherently intolerant and want to stamp out all religions but their own. Yet that first thanksgiving was celebrated by radical Christian fundamentalists, and American Indians were honored guests--as every child used to know.
But that long-ago First Thanksgiving still speaks to and for every American, and we ought to listen. It speaks to Christians; they thought it up. It speaks to Jews--Pilgrim Christianity was a profoundly "Hebraic" Christianity. Thanksgiving speaks for Americans too: it is just like us to set a day aside for a national thank you to the Lord, or (anyway) to someone. Americans continue to be what Lincoln called us, the "almost chosen people," struggling to do right by man and God.”
Amidst the various television offerings and never-ending assortment of goodies, please remember the true, and yes, religious significance of Thanksgiving.As we reflect on our own blessings after a year of news stories about war and terrorism, those blessings certainly seem very clear. Pause and appreciate what we have: family, friends, individual liberties and freedom, and for those truly fortunate, rewarding employment and fine health. The most joyous season we are about to enter should be a reminder to all of us not to take any of what we enjoy each and every day for granted.
While we consider what we truly are thankful for, we should take time to also hope that those who are not as blessed may find whatever it takes to make their lives better. Far too many in our country and abroad have suffered great hardships this past year. They should not be forgotten. They need to be remembered in our thoughts and prayers.
Watch TV. Root for the Packers. Eat and eat some more. But carve out some time to gather as a family, ponder your many blessings, and give thanks, for that is the true meaning of this wonderful holiday.
Wisconsin needs to get involved in the Google-government trend, a movement that has tremendous benefits for taxpayers. A quick and easy Internet clearinghouse would throw a laser beam on government spending, the increased focus having great potential for significant savings.
I am in the process of researching this issue and to draft legislation to create a system that’s easy to use and understand that eliminates taxpayer frustration and reduces the perception of abuse. Transparency provides greater disclosure and elevates public participation in their government, making for a better informed citizenry.
Wisconsin needs to do a much better job of taking advantage of the Internet to provide greater transparency. Our state receives only an average grade of using the Internet to inform the public in a new report on government transparency.
A report entitled The State of State Disclosure has been released by the Corporate Research Project of Good Jobs First.
According to a Good Jobs First press release, “The Good Jobs First study evaluates the quantity and quality of state government online disclosure in three categories: economic development subsidies, state procurement contracts and lobbying activities at the state level. It rates each state’s Web sites in the three areas on criteria such as ease of searching (especially for company-specific data), level of detail, scope of coverage and currency of data. Using these criteria, it assigns a score (0 to 100 percent) to the states’ performances in each of the three areas and overall, and translates the percentages into school-style letter grades (A through F).”
Wisconsin got a grade of C+ with a score of 77%, slightly above the national average of a D- at 60%.
In the category of lobbying, Wisconsin with a website produced by the state Ethics Board (http://ethics.state.wi.us/LobbyingRegistrationReports/LobbyingOverview.htm) gets a perfect score of 100%.
The report states, “We rate Wisconsin's as the best lobbying disclosure site in the nation. All of the data we sought are fully disclosed, searchable, hot-linked and current. There are links to the texts of bills lobbied by individuals or principals and to money spent and hours spent lobbying. A "bills lobbied" table includes type of lobbying activity, time and dollar estimates, position taken, and comments. Keyword search by issue produces a list with notes about principal organizations' business interests with links to a list of all bills lobbied. In addition to keyword, the user can search by issue, bill, administrative rule, topic of a not-yet introduced bill or rule, chapter or statue affected by a bill, and by changes in the last ten days. The user can view prior year reports of "greatest lobbying effort" sorted by organization, hours, and dollars. Prior year summaries are available by organization, bill, bill subject and administrative rule. Finally, a user can subscribe to the FOCUS service for daily email updates on any of the searchable terms.”
Wisconsin scores lower in the other two categories.
In contracting, Wisconsin scores 79%. The report says the Wisconsin Bureau of Procurement “provides a list of state contracts that is organized alphabetically by commodity or contractual service. It also provides a copy of the Notice of Intent to Award Contract with vendor name and price list or a copy of the contract with detailed vendor information and pricing. University of Wisconsin System Purchasing contracts, University of Wisconsin-Madison contracts and the City of Milwaukee contracts are listed on separate sites. Users cannot search by vendor name. Wisconsin recently created the "Contract Sunshine" Web site (http://ethics.state.wi.us/contractsunshine/contractsunshineagentlistings.html) that includes links to contract lists for individual agencies for specific periods of time. It does not, however, provide detailed vendor information or copies of contracts.”
Finally, in the category of subsidies, Wisconsin scores only 52%.
On this category, the report states, “The Wisconsin Department of Commerce is required to submit an annual report to the legislature on the performance of Industrial Revenue Bond (IRB) financing. The report must measure the effects of IRB financing on employment in the state, including jobs created by IRB financed projects and relocation of firms receiving IRBs within the state. The Department of Commerce last published such a report (http://commerce.wi.gov/BDdocs/BD-IRB-2003Report_000.pdf) with 2003 data. The report lists data on company name, business activity, bond issuer, volume cap, total project cost, taxable property, new and retained jobs and average wage. The report also includes narratives on each project and details on firms relocating within the state. Although the department's website lists the allocation status of IRB loans awarded in 2007, the new list does not meet the reporting requirements of disclosing jobs and relocation data.”
Here is the data on Wisconsin.
Wisconsin’s overall score of 77% is deceiving, bolstered by the outstanding work being done by the Ethics Board. The state is following a national pattern of achieving limited progress when it comes to using the Internet to improve and augment the public’s right to know. Major progress can be made with a user-friendly website that provides comprehensive data on state spending.
The Milwaukee Journal/Sentinel Editorial Board has written an excellent editorial in today’s edition, stating the sale of much-needed public drinking water from the city of Milwaukee to New Berlin should not be predicated on approval of the Great Lakes Compact.
The editorial position by the newspaper is right on the money and I commend the Editorial Board for taking this stance.
Here is the editorial.
I want to remind all Scouts about participating in a once-in-a lifetime-chance to be part of Boy Scouts of America (BSA) history. Scouts are invited to compete in the BSA 100th Anniversary Celebration National Logo Contest.
Every registered Scout is eligible to participate. The winning design will become the official symbol for the 100th anniversary of the BSA and placed on all official celebration materials. The winning logo will become a cherished BSA symbol for generations to come.
Centered on the theme, Celebrating the Adventure. Continuing the Journey, the winning logo design will be chosen by a select panel of judges for use as the official symbol of the 100th anniversary beginning in 2008 and for the duration of BSA’s widespread celebration culminating in 2010.
Deadline for entries is November 30, 2007.
Here is more information.