Government and Political News: Walker to make an appearance regarding tourismWisconsin News
-- Governor Scott Walker this morning will be alongside Wisconsin native and Hollywood producer David Zucker known for the "Airplane" and "Naked Gun" movies.
Governor Scott Walker this morning will be alongside Wisconsin native and Hollywood producer David Zucker known for the "Airplane" and "Naked Gun" movies. The governor's office says also at Walker's appearance in Milwaukee will be a surprise cast member from "Airplane." State Tourism Secretary Stephanie Klett will help kick off the specially produced Wisconsin tourism ad, set to air next summer.
The U-S Supreme Court could rule this week on so-called Obamacare and a U-W legal expert says the decision could go a variety of ways. Assistant law professor Andrew Coan says the two extreme possibilities are the court invalidates the entire Affordable Care Act or upholds the entire law. Central to the issue is whether the law's mandate requiring people to buy health coverage is constitutional. Coan says, the High Court’s decision could have very significant implications for years to come, including on constitutional law, rule of the court, and the scope of national power versus state power. He says the impact of the law should be apparent relatively quickly after the decision, but the longer term legal implications will take some time to unfold.
Governor Scott Walker is heading to Chicago later today to talk to a civic group about pension reform. The governor's office is touting a recent PEW study that shows Wisconsin’s pension system is the only in the nation to be 100-percent funded and labeled a ‘solid performer’. Illinois’ pension system is only 45-percent funded, the lowest in the nation, and labeled ‘serious concerns’. Walker's early afternoon speech in the Windy City will be preceded by a Milwaukee appearance this morning regarding tourism.
The federal government has reimbursed Wisconsin for money spent on the now-defunct high speed rail from Milwaukee-to-Madison. Under then-Governor Jim Doyle the state spent nine-million-dollars of federal money for the link and the state was on the hook for another five-million. The project was set to go with more than 800-million-dollars allocated from the feds. However Governor Scott Walker, upon election, cancelled the train citing concern the state would handle the operating costs.
U-S Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack today is announcing funding for renewable energy projects. In a press release, Vilsack says hundreds of projects will be selected - focused on helping farmers and rural small business reduce energy consumption and integrate "green" technology. The program will also give money to producers to conduct feasibility studies on renewable power. Funding is from the Rural Energy for America Program, authorized by the 2008 Farm Bill.
An embattled former state lawmaker will head up the public/private agency spearheading Sheboygan County’s economic growth. Former state Senator Randy Hopper has been chosen for the county’s Economic Development Corporation, succeeding former Executive Director Patrick Drinian who left for a job with the Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation. Hopper was selected after a receiving letters of recommendation from Governor Scott Walker and former Governors Jim Doyle and Tommy Thompson. Hopper was elected to the Senate in 2010 but his term came to an early end during last summer’s recall elections targeting Republican lawmakers who backed the collective bargaining bill. The 46-year-old had also been under public scrutiny for a divorce and his girlfriend later receiving a state job for the Walker administration. Last October he was arrested for alleged first offense drunk driving but acquitted by a six person jury.