TUE News Summary: Evers announces plan to increase Medicaid enrollment

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FRIDAY: WisPolitics.com and WisBusiness.com discussion: Closing the urban-rural health care gap

The recent 2019 County Health Rankings report showed gaps in health care between suburban-urban areas and rural counties in Wisconsin. In southwestern Wisconsin, La Crosse County was ranked 6th among the state’s 72 counties in terms of health factors that drive healthy lifestyles such as lower tobacco and alcohol use; access to quality care, education, employment and social support; plus housing and water-air quality. But surrounding counties ranked between 19th and 59th.

Join us for a discussion on coping with these gaps in rural-urban health care. The cost to attend is free, thanks to the support of Health Tradition.

But you must register in advance.

WHAT: Closing the rural-urban health care gap

WHEN: Friday June 7, 11:30 a.m. to 1:15 p.m. with the program going from noon to 1:15 p.m.

WHERE: The Waterfront Restaurant & Tavern l 328 Front Street South Ste. 100, La Crosse WI 54601

FORMAT: Dr. Tim Bartholow, Chief Medical Officer of Health Tradition, will provide opening remarks, and then a panel of four experts will add commentary. The panelists include Senate Minority Leader Jennifer Shilling of La Crosse, Wally Orzechowski of the Southwest Community Action Program, Dr. Paul S. Mueller, chair of Mayo Clinic’s general internal medicine, and Dr. Erik Gundersen, medical director of Kwik Trip Center for Health and incoming president of the Wisconsin Medical Society.

The event is organized by WisPolitics.com and WisBusiness.com, non-partisan news organizations that regularly convene discussions of important public issues. Sponsored by Health Tradition.

To register, visit: https://eventbrite.com/e/closing-the-urban-rural-health-care-gap-tickets-62264248042



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Evers seeks existing ways to increase insurance coverage
… Flanked by members of the groups Covering Wisconsin and Kids Forward at a state Capitol news conference, Evers talked about using [OCI-DHS] resources … to help people connect with BadgerCare, private insurance sold on the Affordable Care Act marketplace and coverage offered at work. “We’re taking this opportunity to expand outreach on our own,” Evers said. “Clearly I can’t imagine the Legislature or the leaders in the Legislature are going to oppose us working together to make sure everyone can find their place in the health care world.” DHS Sec. Palm the groups will help connect 290K uninsured with resources “to improve enrollment in both the marketplace and BadgerCare.” OCI Commish Afable set educational outreach to focus on those between 100-200% of poverty. JFC to take up DHS budget today, sans Evers Medicaid expansion. By Mills, WPR

How could Evers use his partial veto authority to rewrite GOP budget?
… [answers to] What are the limits of the Wisconsin governor’s line-item veto? [according to LRB] … When have governors have used their partial veto authority? [since outlawing “Frankenstein veto”] … What about splitting the budget into two bills? … GOP lawmakers have pointed out that in 2011, they split Act 10 into two separate bills — one on policy and one on appropriations — after Senate Democrats left the state in protest. By Reilly, CAPITAL TIMES

Evers won’t rule out paying for roads without gas tax hike
… Republicans say they are looking at raising a variety of other fees by an unspecified amount. Evers on Monday wouldn’t say whether he would support or oppose the roads plan without a gas tax hike. Evers said if Republicans can “magically” improve roads without raising the gas tax, he will look at it. … wants to review the entire budget before making any decisions and “it’s not soup yet.” JFC debating roads on Thursday. By AP, WPR


– Rep. Duffy: Mexico Tariffs Will Push Action on Immigration … “The bottom line, Mexico is a great friend of ours,” Duffy told MSNBC’s “Morning Joe.” “The problem is that they’re allowing caravans of people to come from Central America in and across our country to our border, where they come in and they don’t show up for their hearings.”

– MSNBC hosts repeatedly bust GOP lawmaker’s claims about Trump tariffs in brutal interview: ‘You don’t believe that’

– GOP Rep Tries to Deny That Tariffs Raise Prices During MSNBC Interview … Journalist Willie Geist pressed the congressman from Wisconsin, asking: “So you don’t believe a tariff forces companies to raise prices and pass that on to consumers?” “You know what I think it does, it’s going to create a realignment of the supply chain away from China to other parts of the world,” [Duffy] said.

– Talking with Mexico hasn’t worked: GOP. rep. on tariffs, Rep. Sean Duffy, R-Wis., discusses the president’s plans for imposing a five percent tariff on all goods from Mexico as a response to migrants crossing the border. Rep. Duffy refuses to say if he believes tariffs represent a tax on Americans. 12:30 video

– New Poll Shows Voters Disagree on Impeaching Trump … Harvard CAPS/Harris Poll [of] 1,295 registered voters … 37% agreed with impeachment and removing President Trump … 43% of those polled favored “no action,” and 60% of Democrats polled agreed with impeaching the President and removing him … only 36 percent of Independents are in favor.” … “twenty percent of voters say Trump should be censured by Congress.” … Wisconsin rep. Sean Duffy (R) [on FBN] noted that this continued push could not only come back to bite Democrats in the Presidential election but it could also lead to Republicans taking back control of the House. … warned Democrats that “Americans want you to fight for them. Americans don’t want you to fight Donald Trump.”

– John Nichols: If Democrats Pull Their Punches, Donald Trump Will Knock Them Out, Tepid Democratic candidates calling for middle ground are doomed to fail.

– John Nichols: Impeachment affirms the will of the people

– Bice: Mandela Barnes says he was unaware of his unpaid 2018 fine for outstanding parking tickets … Barnes has had state security officials to chauffeur him around the state. … because … Barnes took the parking tickets to Milwaukee Municipal Court last year instead of paying them. Judge Valarie Hill then found him guilty in June 2018 and fined him $108. Barnes was given two months to pay. … missed the deadline … could not renew his vehicle … until he paid the fine. … sold the car — a black 2007 Chevy Impala — to a friend of his mother’s in November. … has not been renewed. … “One hundred percent unaware — 100%,” Barnes said. “I would have gladly taken care of it. … Don’t own car (Impala). Don’t owe anything.” … Wispolitics.com reported recently that Barnes … had nine times more hours of security protection during his first two months in office than [Lt. Gov. Kleefisch] had all of last year. RPW’s Nichols: “This isn’t a security issue. This is an issue of Barnes not being allowed to drive because he is either too incompetent or too irresponsible to follow basic traffic laws.”

– Pocan releases office hours

– Congressman visits Rio Grande Valley to see immigration issues up close: US Reps. Cloud, Grothman and Hice

– Sen. Ted Cruz, Rep. Ocasio-Cortez Join Forces To Prevent Lawmakers From Lobbying: UW prof. Neff Powell to discuss bill

– Wisconsin Rapids considers anti-bullying ordinance; parents could pay fine

– City receives almost $154K in PRAT receipts, May payment brings 2019 revenue to $307K

– Mayor Rhodes-Conway: City must address $9.5 million budget gap for 2020

– Senator Johnson sympathetic to farmers and manufacturers’ straits: with audio

– Hello, Udder Tuggers: Timber Rattlers to temporarily rebrand to salute America’s Dairyland: In National Dairy Month tribute, will play their June 20 game as Wisconsin Udder Tuggers.

– Food Banks Win in Trump Trade War … Part of the farmer bailout includes a $1.4 billion program to buy surplus commodities affected by the trade tariffs and distribute them to food banks, schools and other outlets that serve low-income people. The purchases include beef, grapes, lentils, oranges, pistachios, pork, strawberries and tomatoes. … Cornell [prof. Barrett] emphasized that the food bank component of the trade aid “isn’t a food waste reduction program,” but rather “a farm support payments program.”

– Lutheran pastor from Racine congregation, husband deported to Colombia by ICE: Betty Rendón and Carlos Hincapie deported May 28. DACA-protected daughter Paula Hincapie has been released. In a Facebook post, SYNod Bishop Paul D. Erickson urged supporters to keep the couple and all refugees seeking asylum in their prayers, “as we work to fashion a system that respects the dignity of people and creates a more just and humane immigration policy.” Rendon on Facebook: “You are a blessing of God for my family and me. I love all of you.”

– Landlord seeks to evict [Rastafarian] ‘church’ that took ‘donations’ for marijuana

COURTS ^top^
– Swiss resident charged in 2001 rare car theft in Milwaukee, fraudulent sale in 2015 … outcome of that case is pending before the Wisconsin Supreme Court. Federal prosecutors announced last week that a five-count indictment had been returned against Christopher C. Gardner, 63, of Mont-sur-Rolle, Switzerland. There are four counts of wire fraud and one of transporting a stolen motor vehicle in international commerce.

– Ixonia woman refiles therapy goat suit against Jefferson County

– Where are binge and heavy drinking most common around Wisconsin?

– Uline planning to build $90M distribution center in Kenosha

– Organizations support local communities while battling receding growth

– ‘You are wonderful, wonderful people’: Graduates of the Kenosha eSchool turn their tassels

– Baraboo students talk social justice, equity at regional leadership forum

– League of Women Voters to meet June 11 … at the Minocqua Public Library … focus on climate change as it affects the Northwoods. … speaker will be [WI GreenFire’s] Nancy Turyk

ENERGY ^top^
– Wisconsin Sees Growing Interest In Wind Production, Declining Costs, Federal Incentives Driving Factors … [Duluth Seaway’s] Hron … said they’ve already seen two shipments of tower components. … expect about 15 ships from overseas carrying wind cargo for projects out west this year. … [RENEW WI’s Vickerman] said three wind projects are currently being considered in southwestern Wisconsin. … Texas is constructing the most wind capacity so far this year … In the Midwest, Wisconsin trails behind neighboring states Michigan, Minnesota and Iowa in wind production.

– Public Feedback Sought On DNR’s Trout Management Plan, Next Meeting Is Monday In Wausau

– Conservation Groups Threaten Federal Suit To Protect Lake Sturgeon, Petition Seeks Protected Or Endangered Listing … Mark Templeton [representing national Center for Biological Diversity, as well as environmental organizations in Illinois and Indiana] who say pollution and hydroelectric dams have impeded the ancient fish from reproducing. … Templeton said the USFWS has missed deadlines to respond. A representative for the agency said they cannot comment on litigation.

– WI civil contractor [Kraemer N.A.] awarded $17M for Lock and Dam repairs

– Vocal Foxconn Opponent Accuses Mount Pleasant Fire Chief Of Cyberstalking … [Kelly] Gallaher is one of the creators of the Facebook page, A Better Mt. Pleasant — which is described as a group “working to bring honest and frank discussions about Mount Pleasant politics, elected officials and current events.” … alleges [MPFD chief] Stedman created a mock website, “Let’s Make A Better Mt. Pleasant,” on May 11, 2017, for the sole purpose to harass her and [Trustee Feest, ex-trustees Hansen and Otwaska.] The site has 58 comments, which Gallaher said are demeaning and verbally abusive. … … was unable to determine the author of the website until a glitch revealed “fchief1951” as the creator. Stedman was born in 1951. … also maintains Yahoo, Flickr and WordPress accounts using “fchief.” Stedman did not respond, Village Admin. Murphy said only MPPFC can comment on personnel matters.

– Evers launches plan to boost health insurance enrollment, hedges on GOP road funding plan … [DHS’] Goodsitt said the department will use existing financial resources, as well as staff time, expertise and data, to increase enrollment. She also said [CMS] expects to award $200,000 in 2020 and 2021 to Wisconsin navigators who help individuals find coverage through the Affordable Care Act. … “Clearly the people of Wisconsin told us during the campaign to fix the damn roads,” Evers said. “If Republican leadership has an idea on how we can magically do that without increasing the gas tax, we will certainly be looking for that.”

– Evers continues to push Medicaid expansion despite Republican opposition … “Cooperation that is going on between these two important agencies [OCI, DHS] representing different sectors of the health care community is really important regardless of Medicaid expansion,” Evers told reporters Monday. … Evers’ campaign staff also distributed small posters Saturday at [DPW] convention in Milwaukee asking Democrats to list reasons why they support expanding Medicaid using federal funds. Beyer for Vos: “Speaker Vos and his Republican colleagues don’t support the expansion of any welfare program in this state. The speaker is interested in investing in outreach … without putting more people on government benefits at a time when there’s record unemployment and unfilled jobs.” JFC co-chair Nygren agreed with Evers’ ends but not means, “Instead of forcing individuals into government-run healthcare, we should prioritize connecting those who … already are eligible.” Baldauff for Evers: “”Instead of asking why the governor is fighting for the will of the people, the better question is for Republican leaders — why won’t they listen to the people?” Vos, Fitzgerald reps did not respond. On road funding, Evers said, “The people of Wisconsin told us during the campaign to fix the damn roads. Now if Republican leadership has an idea how we can magically do that without increasing the gas tax, we’ll certainly be looking for that.”

– Evers announces new health care partnership to increase access, affordability … [WILL’s Szafir] knocked Evers and his administration for “obsessively pursuing Medicaid expansion” and pledged to ensure any actions Evers takes complies with the law.

– Wittke pushed on Medicaid; Area legislators answer questions on budget: GOP Rep. Wittke joined Dems Neubauer, McGuire and Wirch at GTC listening session, believe they will have something to vote on by early July. “We’re off to a bad start,” Wirch said, but cited agreement on PD boost. Wittke: “we’re not off to much of a start at all. Is there common ground? It depends on how you view common ground. More money doesn’t solve everything.” Neubauer pushed for reconsidering Medicaid expansion, “a real common sense policy that will really benefit Racine. We are simply accepting federal money … we paid this money, but right now we’re not able to make use of it.” Wittke warned against one-time funding for ongoing expense, disputed Dem claim of 82K more insured, “Wisconsin does not have an access issue. Of the 82,000, there are only 38,000 that would apply. … doubts … that accepting the Medicaid money will solve all of the health issues across Wisconsin,” said insurance offered through the ACA marketplace or BadgerCare are other options for people seeking care. Wirch: “Republicans have done everything they possibly could to undermine ACA, and now we’re hearing that’s a viable alternative.”

– IL guv poised to sign legal sports betting, casino expansion, legal pot

– 2 Counties Pull Out Of Plans To Build Regional Youth Prison, La Crosse, Fond Du Lac Counties Say Building Is Too Cost-Prohibitive

– Human trafficking victims worked in Wisconsin, grand jury indictment charges … Five people were indicted by a grand jury for allegedly forcing 14 Mexican immigrants to work on farms in the two states in 2016.

– Racine man reportedly modified Glock pistol to fully automatic

– Manitowoc Co. bald eagle shooting: Reward now $5K for info leading to arrest

– Sex offender sent back to prison in new Baraboo sexual assault case

– Mercury Marine expands 23,500 square feet with diecast addition

– Construction firm owner Brian Ganos agrees to plead guilty to federal contracting fraud charges

MEDIA ^top^
– Bliss Communications to sell newspapers, radio stations: including JG to Adams Publishing Group and its radio stations [WCLO, WJVL] to Ben Thompson, CEO of Big Radio

– [GM] O’Brien to retire from helm of WCLO-WJVL radio

– APG to buy Janesville Gazette, Bliss Printing

– EagleHerald owner announces sale of newspapers, radio stations

– VFW Post 1230 disbands as post commander retires

– Minnesota Court Reverses Approval Of Line 3 Environmental Review, Court: Review Doesn’t Consider Impact Of Possible Spill On Lake Superior Watershed

– Bipartisan Push To Reduce Tick-Borne Disease Underway In Legislature … [Cowles-Miller-Mursau-Milroy bills] circulating for co-sponsors, would require [DNR] to post signs at state parks and trails warning users about ticks and the illnesses they carry and make bug spray available for purchase at parks. … also add an epidemiologist at [DHS] and establish a task force to study ways to reduce the number of illnesses spread by ticks.

– Police investigate metal object discovered inside apple sold at Baraboo Kwik Trip

– County works to tighten rules on riparian replacement homes, Staff cites abuse of building new home to replace existing one

RETAIL ^top^
– Hunt on to replace Spooner Shopko

TAXES ^top^
– Walmart and city settle dark store lawsuit … will cost the city about $4,800 a year in refunded taxes

– State historical society visits Al Capone’s fabled ‘Hideout’

– [Transit X] proposes ‘flying solar pods’ as new public transit alternative in Madison, The proposed 108-mile network of pods would whisk residents around the city at up to 45 miles per hour on rails 20 feet above city streets. … met with skepticism Monday at a city Transportation Policy and Planning Board meeting, where a transit planner’s review included 10 reasons the project isn’t currently feasible in Madison.

– Evers won’t say whether he’ll support budget without gas tax hike [Reilly]

– Evers won’t rule out paying for roads without gas tax hike [Bauer of AP]

– BDN editorial: The Constitution is not partisan … ON TUESDAY, speaking to the Chamber of Commerce in Paducah, Kentucky, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell was asked this question: “Should a Supreme Court justice die next year, what will your position be on filling the spot?” McConnell responded, with a smile: “Oh, we’d fill it.” .. [but McConnell nixed even hearings on Garland in Obama’s final year] … Four years later, why is there a different answer? A McConnell spokesperson explained that, “This time, both (White House and Senate) are controlled by the GOP.” … [but Constitution] does not say anything about limiting a president’s appointment power because an election is approaching. … When constitutional principle no longer prevails, replaced by the raw exercise of partisan power, future generations surely stand to inherit a very different country.

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