Reps in the News: TAD Programs, 2020 Congressional Calendar

Representative Joel Kitchens

Door County will be receiving funds for treatment-court and diversion (TAD) programs through the 2019-21 state budget. TAD programs allow district attorneys and judges to offer offenders options other than confinement in jail or prison, thereby saving taxpayer dollars. These programs include voluntary substance-abuse treatment and case management, plus other types of risk-reduction services.

“The treatment courts and diversion programs are not about being soft on crime,” Rep. Joel Kitchens said. “Instead, they provide an opportunity for nonviolent offenders to integrate back into society, rather than repeating the cycle and going back to prison.” 

Door County was awarded $140,000 to create an adult drug court to hear selected cases that involve substance-dependent offenders. Depending on which phase the participants are in, they must meet routinely with a judge throughout the duration of their case. Every step and measure of the program is designed to ensure that participants are taking the correct road to recovery. 

Source: Kitchens press release


Representative Mike Gallagher

Congress released its 2020 calendar last week, and Rep. Mike Gallagher was not impressed.

 “We just got the calendar for 2020 next year, and I did an analysis of the calendar, and we are only working one third of the calendar year in Congress,” Gallagher said. “We’re working less than all the last three years. So think about that: your elected members of Congress are working 33.3 percent of the time.”

At the Door County Economic Development Corporation’s annual luncheon in May, Gallagher said one of the top bipartisan opportunities for reform in Congress is simply changing the Congressional calendar. 

“Fix the schedule,” he said. “Force congress to get to work and pass the budget on time, and disallow fundraising while Congress is in session.” Gallagher suggested a callendar of three weeks in Washington followed by one week back in district that would mean “more time in your district and more time here. Just change the simple calendar. It will go a long way towards fixing Congress.”

Source: Gallagher press release

Senator Ron Johnson

Sen. Ron Johnson responded to a request from Reps. Jim Jordan (R-Ohio) and Devin Nunes (R-Calif.), the ranking members of the House Committee on Oversight and Reform and the Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence, respectively, to share his first-hand knowledge about the U.S.-Ukraine relationship as part of the impeachment proceedings. 

Johnson has worked closely on Ukraine issues during his time in the Senate and is chair of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee’s European Subcommittee. Johnson has refused suggestions that he should recuse himself from any impeachment proceedings because of his deep involvement in key portions of the Ukraine timeline. Johnson’s response included the following statement:

“America faces enormous challenges at home and abroad. My oversight efforts have persuaded me [that] there has been a concerted effort, probably beginning the day after the November 2016 election, to sabotage and undermine President Trump and his administration.

President Trump, his supporters and the American public have a legitimate and understandable desire to know if wrongdoing occurred directed toward influencing the 2016 election or sabotaging Trump’s administration.”

Source: Johnson press release

Senator Tammy Baldwin

U.S. Sens. Tammy Baldwin, Sherrod Brown (D-Ohio) and Bob Menendez (D-N.J.) led a group of Democratic colleagues urging Gannett News and GateHouse to recognize any union selected by a majority of workers in any GateHouse- or Gannett-owned newsroom.

The anticipated GateHouse-Gannett merger could have significant impacts on the companies’ newsrooms and their communities. Union representation will help employees to better advocate for pay, benefits and job security during the transition and give a voice to the communities that rely on those newspapers.

“In many communities, local newspapers are the primary source of news and information, yet the consequences of closing or hollowing out a newspaper are not considered by news executives seeking to maximize shareholder value and profit,” the senators wrote. “Through collective bargaining with the newsrooms, affected communities will have a voice in decisions about their newspapers.” 

The newly combined media company, which will continue to operate under the Gannett name, owns the Door County Advocate in addition to the Appleton Post-Crescent, Fond du Lac Reporter, Green Bay Press Gazette, Manitowoc Herald Times Reporter, Marshfield News Herald, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, Oshkosh Northwestern, Sheboygan Press, Stevens Point Journal, Wausau Daily Herald, Wisconsin Law Journal, and Wisconsin Rapids Tribune.

Source: Baldwin press release