Representative Joel Kitchens
Kitchens received an award at the Wisconsin Association of Campground Owners (WACO) State Convention in Stevens Point for his efforts in passing Assembly Bill 174, which helps to protect campground owners in cases where a camper is injured at no fault of the campground owner. Private campground owners will no longer need to battle frivolous cases when the claimant was injured by an “inherent risk of camping,” such as swimming, hiking, other outdoor activities, and methods beyond the owner’s control. “Private campground owners are an important part of Wisconsin tourism,” said Kitchens. “AB 174 will help campground owners avoid frivolous lawsuits that inhibit their ability to grow their business. Promoting a fair legal environment for these business owners will promote our tourism industry and its ability to thrive.”
Source: Kitchens press release
Governor Scott Walker
The Governor signed Assembly Bills 786, 787, and 790 into law March 22 at Options for Independent Living in Green Bay. All three bills focus on building dementia-friendly communities throughout Wisconsin. AB 786 works to help counties create better response plans for dementia patients who experience a crisis. AB 787 provides $1 million in additional funding for respite care that is distributed to all 72 counties. AB 790 provides $250,000 for the Department of Health Services to award grants for mobile crisis teams to better respond to dementia-related crises.
Source: Walker press release
Senator Tammy Baldwin
Baldwin and U.S. Representatives Ron Kind, Gwen Moore and Mark Pocan sent a letter to Governor Scott Walker calling on him to immediately restore food assistance to thousands of Wisconsinites by requesting and reinstating the federal waiver for 20 counties and 10 cities with high unemployment rates. Recent reports have concluded that poverty in Wisconsin has reached alarming levels and the highest rates in years in many parts of the state. Currently, 20 counties and 10 cities in Wisconsin have unemployment levels that would allow them to qualify for an exemption waiver to the food assistance restrictions for certain low-income Wisconsinites. For more than a decade, Wisconsin, along with many other states, has instituted a federal waiver to exempt vulnerable individuals in areas of high unemployment from these time limits on food assistance eligibility. But, Governor Walker has now decided to remove this exemption and force many vulnerable Wisconsinites to lose access to the food they need.
Source: Baldwin press release
Senator Ron Johnson
Johnson joined the 94-1 majority last week in approving the Comprehensive Addiction and Recovery Act, a bill to begin addressing opioid and heroin addiction. Johnson said this after the vote: “America’s insatiable demand for drugs creates so many problems. As I travel around Wisconsin and talk to public safety officials, I ask them the biggest problem they’re dealing with. They tell me drug abuse, citing the crime and the trail of broken lives and broken families that addiction leaves in its wake. The committee I chair has spent more than a year investigating the harm inflicted on veterans by the over-prescription of opioids in the health system that is supposed to be taking care of them. We’ve also held 14 hearings on border security – only to discover the intimate link between drug trafficking and the fact our southern border is not secure.”
Source: Johnson press release
President Barack Obama
Obama called for the U.S. embargo against Cuba to be lifted and for Cubans themselves to embrace change in a historic address from Havana. “It’s time to lift the embargo,” Obama told Cuban officials and dignitaries gathered at the Grad Teatro de la Habana Alicia Alonso, including President Raúl Castro. “But even if we lifted the embargo tomorrow, Cubans would not realize their potential without continued change here in Cuba.” Obama’s landmark visit to Cuba follows the Dec. 17, 2014, agreement to begin normalizing relations between the U.S. and Cuba after a more than a half-century of estrangement. He is the first sitting president to visit Cuba since 1959.