Governor Scott Walker
Gov. Walker visited the Mosinee School District to announce 252 school districts in Wisconsin were awarded $7.8 million in Technology for Educational Achievement (TEACH) Information Technology Infrastructure grants. Since the program was created in 2016, the program has awarded more than $13 million in grants. Through an application process, grants for fiscal year 2018 were available to eligible school districts with 16 or fewer students per square mile. Funding amount available to a school district was determined by the number of students within the district. Area districts that received funding include the Algoma School District, $30,000; Gibraltar Area School District, $29,949; Kewaunee School District, $38,946; Luxemburg-Casco School District, $4,700; Sevastopol School District, $15,471; and Washington Island School District, $26,150.
Source: Walker press release
Congressman Mike Gallagher
Rep. Gallagher voted last week in support of the House Amendment to the VA MISSION Act of 2018 (S. 2372), a historic package of legislation designed to modernize the VA’s health care system and increase the quality of care for veterans. Key parts of the legislation include: an overhaul of the Veterans Choice and Community Care programs to increase access to care, a prescription drug monitoring program to help combat veteran opioid abuse, and plans for an assessment of VA facilities across the country to ensure quality of care. Importantly, this bill also expands the Comprehensive Family Caregiver Program to pre-9/11 veterans who are currently ineligible under existing law. “After putting their lives on the line to defend our nation, our veterans deserve world-class care,” Gallagher said. “Unfortunately, recent abuses, systematic failures, and shocking scandals at the Veterans Administration have failed them. The legislative package we passed today in the House is a bold and innovative departure from past failed policies that brings long-overdue transparency, accountability, and modernization to the VA. I urge my colleagues in the Senate to act quickly and pass this legislation because looking out for our veterans is a mission we cannot afford to fail.”
Source: Gallagher press release
Senator Tammy Baldwin
Sen. Baldwin this week joined a bipartisan group of 30 U.S. Senators in urging the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to increase the funding cap for a program aimed at improving the quality of health care available to patients in rural areas. In a letter to FCC Chairman Ajit Pai, the Senators highlight the need to strengthen the Rural Health Care (RHC) Program to address the shortage of broadband connectivity for rural health care providers. The program has been improving the quality of health care available in rural America since 1997, but has never seen a funding increase despite increased demand. “In 2016, for the first time ever, the demand for RHC funding exceeded the cap and funding to recipients was reduced by 7.5 percent,” the Senators wrote. “Further, it was recently announced that RHC applicants will suffer a devastating cutback in funding of 16 to 26 percent in funding year 2017 because of continued growth in demand. Unless the spending cap is raised appropriately to account for current needs and future growth, health care providers in rural areas will encounter severe rate increases for their broadband services, making it even harder for rural health care practitioners to engage in life-saving telemedicine.”
Source: Baldwin press release
Senator Ron Johnson
Sen. Johnson said this after voting against reinstating federal regulation of the internet: “The Obama administration’s heavy-handed Title II regulations were a solution in search of a problem. As a result, investment in high-speed broadband actually declined for the first time since the invention of the internet. Reduced investment stifles innovation and rural broadband expansion in Wisconsin. I opposed the Democrats’ political show vote today because while ‘net neutrality’ is a clever slogan, the future of the internet will be better under a light-touch regulatory structure that worked well for more than two decades.”
Source: Johnson press release
President Donald Trump
President Trump’s personal lawyer, Michael Cohen, received a secret payment of at least $400,000 to fix talks between the Ukrainian president and President Trump, according to sources in Kiev close to those involved. The payment was arranged by intermediaries acting for Ukraine’s leader, Petro Poroshenko, the sources said, though Cohen was not registered as a representative of Ukraine as required by U.S. law. The meeting at the White House was last June. Shortly after the Ukrainian president returned home, his country’s anti-corruption agency stopped its investigation into Trump’s former campaign manager, Paul Manafort.
Source: BBC News