Afternoon State News Briefs: Prosser demands collegue recuse herself from his caseWisconsin News
-- State Supreme Court Justice David Prosser demanded today that Justice Ann Walsh Bradley withdraw from Prosser’s disciplinary case.
MADISON - State Supreme Court Justice David Prosser demanded today that Justice Ann Walsh Bradley withdraw from Prosser’s disciplinary case.
The state Judicial Commission charged Prosser last month with violating the judicial code of ethics, for allegedly putting a choke-hold on Bradley last June. And a panel of three appeals judges will make a recommendation to the Supreme Court about Prosser’s possible discipline. Prosser filed a formal motion today asking Bradley to recuse herself from the case. Prosser said she was a direct witness to the incident – and she has orchestrated a public relations campaign against him. Bradley has not commented. Prosser claims that he was just trying to defend himself when Bradley charged toward him. The incident occurred the night before the Supreme Court issued its controversial ruling which upheld the state law that virtually ends collective bargaining for most public employee unions in Wisconsin. A few days after the Judicial Commission’s charges, Prosser hinted that he might ask all the other Supreme Court justices to recuse themselves, thus dismissing his case.
Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett received his first union endorsements today in his Democratic bid for governor. Barrett said he got the backing of the Amalgamated Transit Union, Local 317 of the Operating Engineers, and the North Central States’ Iron-workers’ District Council. Together, those unions represent around five-thousand people. One of Barrett’s primary opponents, Kathleen Falk, has received a lot of union support after promising to veto the entire next state budget until it includes the return of collective bargaining for most public unions. Barrett says he won’t go that far, promising only that he would call a special legislative session on the issue. Falk, a former Dane County executive, has received endorsements from the state AFL-CIO, the state’s largest teachers’ union, and the largest statewide public employee union. Falk, Barrett, Secretary of State Douglas La Follette, state Sen. Kathleen Vinehout, and fake Democrat Gladys Huber are squaring off in the May eighth Democratic primary. The winner advances to the general election June 5.
The Wood County coroner blames probable drowning and hypothermia for the death of a man who body was found in Lake Wazeecha March 13th. Greg Senn had been missing for two months. The 29 year old man was last seen in Grand Rapids in mid-January. Officials think he may have taken a short cut across the lake while walking to his home in Wisconsin Rapids. Though his blood alcohol content was measured at point-two percent, the coroner says that could have been inflated because he was in the water.
Governor Scott Walker tells people attending the International Meeting of Dairy Manufacturers a new state initiative to increase Wisconsin’s milk output is good for the industry. Walker spoke to the annual gathering in Milwaukee earlier today. He says Wisconsin cheesemakers account for one-fourth of all the nation’s cheese production. Walker says the industry is very strong here, but it could be even stronger with a better supply of milk. As it stands now, 10 percent of the milk used in Wisconsin cheese comes from elsewhere. The governor says that’s why he introduced the Growing Wisconsin Dairy 30-by-20 program in March. It’s goal is to have the state produce 30 billion pounds of milk by the year 2020. That total was 26.1 billion pounds last year.
The Milwaukee Common Council has approved plans for a 20-story hotel at the Potawatomi Bingo Casino costing a total of $98 million. The hotel would have 380 rooms and would front the casino on West Canal Street. Casino officials say it would include a casual dining restaurant with 180 seats, a spa and a four-story parking garage. Potawatomi officials are promising the project would create a thousand jobs in construction and 230 more permanent hotel jobs. The common council gave the project the needed approval yesterday.
The head of a Wisconsin business group says one reason employers cannot find skilled workers is that too many of them are failing drug tests. Jim Morgan of the Wisconsin Manufacturers-and-Commerce Foundation says more companies are giving drug tests to job applicants – especially in factories, due to safety concerns. Morgan says it’s a long-term problem that’s helping cause a shortage of skilled workers. And he says some communities are trying to solve it, like Manitowoc. Annie Short coordinates a project that aims to get Manitowoc County residents healthier – and she says up to half of companies’ potential employees are failing drug tests. Short told the Manitowoc Herald Times Reporter it’s a vicious cycle. She says some people are turning to drugs to cope with being unemployed – but they cannot get a job because they cannot pass a drug test.
Private investigator Ira Robins was given a spot on the ballot today for the lieutenant governor’s recall election. The Government Accountability Board said Robins had technical problems with his nominating petitions – and he was given until tomorrow to fix them. The petitions had enough names, but some were not dated properly. Robins fixed the problems, and Board staffers ruled today that he had 2,023 valid signatures – barely more than the two-thousand needed to get on the ballot. Robins, state fire union chief Mahlon Mitchell, and fake Democrat Isaac Weix are on the May eighth Democratic primary ballot. The winner will try to unseat Republican Lieutenant Governor Rebecca Kleefisch on June 5.