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Conservatively Speaking

State Senator Mary Lazich (R-New Berlin) represents parts of four counties: Milwaukee, Waukesha, Racine, and Walworth. Her Senate District 28 includes New Berlin, Franklin, Greendale, Hales Corners, Muskego, Waterford, Big Bend, the town of Vernon and parts of Greenfield, East Troy, and Mukwonago. Senator Lazich has been in the Legislature for more than a decade. She considers herself a tireless crusader for lower taxes, reduced spending and smaller government.

Governor's Weekly Radio Address: A New Year, A Better Wisconsin

A New Year always brings with it new hope and optimism and this year that may be more true than ever,  as we look forward to more growth and greater successes as we continue on our path of reform.  We made great strides in 2013, and we’ll continue with our big, bold reforms in 2014. 

Last year, we passed our biennial budget, which focused on attaining more prosperity, better performance, and true independence for all Wisconsinites.  The budget includes nearly $1 billion in tax relief for Wisconsin families and business.  And we didn’t stop there – a few months later, thanks to higher than expected growth in state revenues, we passed an additional $100 million in property tax relief for Wisconsin property owners including families, farmers, seniors, and small businesses.  One of my main priorities for 2014 is to cut taxes again, so you can keep more of your own money.

This New Year, we’re embracing the opportunities available to us.  We continue to focus on developing our workforce, and ensuring our workers have the training they need for the jobs of today and tomorrow.

The outlook for our state is bright – Unemployment is down.  Revenue is up.  Small business owners are creating jobs and feeling optimistic about the future.  My goal, as your Governor, is to help make sure the young people in our state, including my own sons, inherit an even better Wisconsin than the one we did, and we are right on track.

Tonette and I wish each of you and your families, a safe and healthy 2014.  Together, we are moving Wisconsin forward.

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State Senator Lazich's Weekly Insight

OpenBook Wisconsin Website Launched
The website OpenBook Wisconsin, launched January 2, 2014, allows public access to state expenditures displaying payments for state of Wisconsin goods and services beginning fiscal year 2008 to the present time.  The website includes search capabilities by vendor, state agency, or expenditure category. 

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DNR Seeking Nominations for the Annual Hunters Ethics Award

The Department of Natural Resources is looking for sportsman and/or sportswomen going out of their way to ensure a safe and ethical hunt for themselves and their hunting party.  

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2014 Free Winter Fishing Weekend January 18 and 19, 2014

The Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources (DNR) announced the 2014 Free Fishing Weekend is January 18 and 19, 2014.  During Free Fishing Weekend, fishing clinics and ice fishing equipment are available without cost to the user at many Wisconsin state parks and Wisconsin DNR offices. Click here for more information about the 2014 Free Fishing Weekend.

Governor's Weekly Radio Address: Moving Wisconsin’s Economy Forward

The statewide chamber of commerce just released a survey of employers that show that 95 percent said that Wisconsin was headed in the right direction.  Back in 2009, that number was just 4 percent.  Our positive reforms are helping the people of Wisconsin create more jobs.  The private sector job growth from April to November last year, was the best since 1994 and Wisconsin was ranked as the fourth best state in personal income growth from the second to the third quarter in 2013.  That’s positive news for Wisconsin, but there is still much more work to be done.

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State Senator Lazich's Weekly Insight

Legislature’s Joint Finance Committee
This week Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation (WEDC) representatives testified to the Joint Finance Committee (JFC) requesting release of $44.7 million dollars allocated to WEDC within the 2013-2015 state budget.

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Senate Calendar for January 14, 2014

First Order.                         Call of Roll.

Second Order.                     Chief clerk's entries.

Third Order.                        Introduction, first reading and reference of proposals.

Fourth Order.                      Report of committees.

Fifth Order.                         Petitions and communications.

Sixth Order.                         Referrals and receipt of committee reports concerning proposed administrative rules.

Seventh Order.                    Advice and consent of the Senate

QUESTION:          Shall the appointment be confirmed?

Anderson-Meger, Jennifer, of La Crosse, as a Professional Advanced Practice representative on the Marriage and Family Therapy Professional Counseling and Social Work Examining Board, to serve for the term ending July 1, 2017.   

Arnold, Eva, of Beloit, as a member of the Board on Aging and Long Term Care, to serve for the term ending May 1, 2017

Connors, Dr. Victor, of Lodi, as a Optometrist 5 on the Optometry Examining Board, to serve for the term ending July 1, 2017.   

Dominiczak, Lori, of Brown Deer, as a Physical Therapist 3 on the Physical Therapy Examining Board, to serve for the term ending July 1, 2017

Fielding, Kurt, of Green Bay, as the Athletic Trainer 4 on the Athletic Trainers Affiliated Credentialing Board, to serve for the term ending July 1, 2015

Johnson, Barbara, of De Pere, as aAudiologist 1 on the Hearing and Speech Examining Board, to serve for the term ending July 1, 2017

Krier, Thomas, of Allenton, as a Hearing Instrument Spec 2 on the Hearing and Speech Examining Board, to serve for the term ending July 1, 2017.   

Lancaster, Dr. Shanyn C., of Milwaukee, as a Doctor on the Athletic Trainers Affiliated Credentialing Board, to serve for the term ending July 1, 2016.   

Larson, Scott, of Onalaska, as a Hearing Instrument Spec 1 on the Hearing and Speech Examining Board, to serve for the term ending July 1, 2017

Lindsey, Charles V., of Sun Prairie, as a Professional Counselor 3 on the Marriage and Family Therapy Professional Counseling and Social Work Examining Board, to serve for the term ending July 1, 2016.   

Meyer, Tanya, of Gleason, as a member of the Board on Aging and Long Term Care, to serve for the term ending May 1, 2017

Michaelis, Marla, of Jefferson, as a Funeral Director/Embalmer 3 on the Funeral Directors Examining Board, to serve for the term ending July 1, 2017

Phillips, Dr. Michael, of Oconomowoc, as a Doctor-Medicine 9 on the Medical Examining Board, to serve for the term ending July 1, 2017.   

Pietz, Dr. Wendy, of Milwaukee, as a Dentist 2 on the Dentistry Examining Board, to serve for the term ending July 1, 2017.   

Schulz, Dr. Robert, of Appleton, as Optometrist 1 on the Optometry Examining Board, to serve for the term ending July 1, 2016.   

Schulz-Stangl, Renee, of Marshfield, as a member of the Council on Domestic Abuse, to serve for the term ending July 1, 2014.   

Sippel, Susan, of Manitowoc, as a member of the Council on Domestic Abuse, to serve for the term ending July 1, 2014.   

Stensberg, Dean, of Middleton, as a member of the Funeral Directors Examining Board, to serve for the term ending July 1, 2017.   

Underbakke, Gail, of Madison, as a member of the Dietitians Affiliated Credentialing Board, to serve for the term ending July 1, 2015.   

Vergamini, Gregory, of Superior, as a Athletic Trainer 1 of the Athletic Trainers Affiliated Credentialing Board, to serve for the term ending July 1, 2016.

Eighth Order.                      Messages from the Assembly.

QUESTION:          Shall the Assembly amendment be concurred in?

Senate Bill 208.  Relating to: experience requirements for real estate brokers and granting rule-making authority. By Senators Gudex, Erpenbach, Schultz, Kedzie, Cowles, L. Taylor and Shilling; cosponsored by Representatives Steineke, Spiros, Bewley, Ohnstad, Knudson, Riemer and Krug. 

Senate Bill 270.  Relating to: motorcycle operator's licenses and rider courses. By Senators Petrowski, Grothman, L. Taylor and Lehman; cosponsored by Representatives Stone, Ripp, Ballweg, Brooks, Knodl, Mursau, Spiros, Tittl and Weatherston. 

Ninth Order.                        Special Orders.

Tenth Order.                       Consideration of motions, resolutions, and joint resolutions not requiring a third reading.

QUESTION:          Shall the joint resolution be concurred in?

Assembly Joint Resolution 66.  Relating to: the life and service of former Lawrence University president Richard Warch. By Representatives Bernard Schaber, Richards, Berceau, Bewley, Bies, Jorgensen, Kahl, Kaufert, Murphy, Murtha, Ohnstad, A. Ott and Wright; cosponsored by Senators Ellis, T. Cullen, Lassa, Lehman and Miller.

Eleventh Order.                  Second reading and amendments of senate joint resolutions and senate bills.

QUESTION:          Shall the bill be ordered to a third reading?

Senate Bill 63.  Relating to: the composition of the State Capitol and Executive Residence Board. By Senators Risser, Schultz and Olsen; cosponsored by Representatives Loudenbeck, Stroebel and Hintz

Senate Bill 245.  Relating to: applications for public assistance programs, offenses in public assistance programs, granting rule-making authority, and providing a penalty. (FE) By Senators Darling, Gudex, Grothman, Kedzie, Lazich, Leibham and Olsen; cosponsored by Representatives Nygren, Krug, Knodl, Endsley, Jacque, Kaufert, Kerkman, Kestell, Kleefisch, Nass, J. Ott, Pridemore, Sanfelippo, Schraa and Strachota. 

Senate Bill 280.  Relating to: expenditure of $217,499 from the general fund in payment of a claim against the state made by J & L Steel and Electrical Services. (FE) By Senator Harsdorf; cosponsored by Representative Knudson. 

Senate Bill 311.  Relating to: a dental hygienist's administration of nitrous oxide inhalation analgesia and practice of dental hygiene. (FE) By Senators Harsdorf, Vukmir, Tiffany, Lehman and Grothman; cosponsored by Representatives Severson, Bernier, Bewley, Bies, Kooyenga, Mason, Pridemore, Spiros, Swearingen, Thiesfeldt, Tittl, Wachs, Weatherston and Wright. 

Senate Bill 345.  Relating to: the authority and responsibilities of the Department of Safety and Professional Services and the various boards under that department, the membership of the Cosmetology Examining Board, professional licensure of pharmacists, the Pharmacy Examining Board's operation of the prescription drug monitoring program, authorizing the construction, installation, alteration, operation, and inspection of elevators and other similar conveyances, and licensing requirements for elevator mechanics, inspectors, and contractors. (FE)  By Senators Lasee, Cowles and Grothman; cosponsored by Representatives Kooyenga, Nygren, Craig, LeMahieu, Marklein, Kleefisch, Tittl, Petryk, Bies, Williams and Strachota. 

Senate Bill 370.  Relating to: state procurement and construction contracts with disabled veteran-owned businesses. (FE) By Senators Farrow, Carpenter, Lassa and Shilling; cosponsored by Representatives Weatherston, Barnes, Bernier, Bewley, Brooks, Endsley, Hebl, Johnson, Kolste, T. Larson, Marklein, Milroy, Petryk, Ringhand, Wright and Ohnstad

Senate Bill 391.  Relating to: allowing health care providers licensed outside the state to participate in and requirements on nonprofit agencies in the volunteer health care provider program. (FE) By Senator Vukmir; cosponsored by Representative Severson. 

Senate Bill 395.  Relating to: cosmetologist training hours and exemption of makeup artists from barbering and cosmetology licensure requirements. (FE) By Senators Harsdorf, L. Taylor, Grothman and Tiffany; cosponsored by Representatives Knudson, Kooyenga, Krug, Murphy, Tittl, Ohnstad, Knodl and Murtha. 

Senate Bill 463.  Relating to: ratification of the agreement negotiated between the state of Wisconsin and the Professional Employees in Research, Statistics, and Analysis for the 2013-14 fiscal year, covering employees in the professional research, statistics, and analysis collective bargaining unit, and authorizing an expenditure of funds. (FE) By joint committee on Employment Relations. 

Senate Bill 464.  Relating to: ratification of the agreement negotiated between the state of Wisconsin and the Wisconsin State Attorneys Association for the 2013-14 fiscal year, covering employees in the professional legal collective bargaining unit, and authorizing an expenditure of funds. (FE) By joint committee on Employment Relations. 

Senate Bill 465.  Relating to: ratification of the agreement negotiated between the state of Wisconsin and the Service Employees International Union, for the 2013-14 fiscal year, covering employees in the professional patient care collective bargaining unit, and authorizing an expenditure of funds. (FE) By joint committee on Employment Relations. 

Senate Bill 466.  Relating to: ratification of the agreement negotiated between the state of Wisconsin and the Wisconsin State Building Trades Negotiating Committee, for the 2013-14 fiscal year, covering employees in the building trades crafts collective bargaining unit, and authorizing an expenditure of funds. (FE) By joint committee on Employment Relations. 

Senate Bill 467.  Relating to: ratification of the agreement negotiated between the state of Wisconsin and the Wisconsin State Employees Union, for the 2013-14 fiscal year, covering employees in the professional education collective bargaining unit, and authorizing an expenditure of funds. (FE) By joint committee on Employment Relations. 

Senate Bill 475.  Relating to: changing the timing of eligibility changes and other changes to BadgerCare Plus. (FE) By joint committee on Finance. 

Twelfth Order.                    Second reading and amendments of assembly joint resolutions and assembly bills.

QUESTION:          Shall the bill be ordered to a third reading?

Assembly Bill 284.  Relating to: the length limit for certain vehicle combinations operated on the highway without a permit. (FE) By Representatives Spiros, Ripp, Ballweg, Brooks, Murphy, Vruwink and Weatherston; cosponsored by Senators Petrowski, Lassa and Olsen. 

Thirteenth Order.               Third reading of joint resolutions and bills.

Fourteenth Order.               Motions may be offered.

Fifteenth Order.                  Announcements, adjournment honors, and remarks under special privilege.

Sixteenth Order.                 Adjournment.

Four Eagle Scouts Honored

Sunday, January 12, 2014, four young men celebrated Eagle Scout status during a ceremony at Holy Apostles Catholic Parish, New Berlin.  Daniel Engsberg, Daniel Griese, Eric Rivard, and Dallas Thompson attained the highest, most honorable rank awarded by the Boy Scouts of America.  They accomplished earning Eagle Scout by displaying outstanding dedication and service to scouting. 

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Governor's Radio Address: "Progress in Wisconsin"

Three years ago, when I delivered my first State of the State address, Wisconsin’s fiscal house was a mess.  We were facing a $3.6 billion budget deficit, we owed millions to Minnesota from the tax reciprocity agreement, and we owed $233 million payment for past raids to the Patient Compensation fund.

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Natural Resources Board January Agenda Available

The Natural Resources Board January 22, 2014, meeting agenda is available.  Members of the public have until 11:00 AM January 17, 2014 to pre-register to testify. 

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Prudent and Wise Fiscal Management Results in Victory Lap for Taxpayers

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New Berlin Public Library Awarded Grant Funding

The Wisconsin Humanities Council awarded the New Berlin Public Library grant funding for the book discussion program Money & Banking beginning during spring 2014.

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Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection Releases Smart Tax Filing Recommendations

The Wisconsin Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection (DATCP) issued guidelines for people to protect themselves from identity theft and fraud during this tax season. Click here for  DATCP’s recommended smart tax filing practices.

Senate Calendar for January 22, 2014

First Order.                         Call of Roll.

Second Order.                     Chief clerk's entries.

Third Order.                        Introduction, first reading and reference of proposals.

Fourth Order.                      Report of committees.

Fifth Order.                         Petitions and communications.

Sixth Order.                         Referrals and receipt of committee reports concerning proposed administrative rules.

Seventh Order.                    Advice and consent of the Senate

QUESTION:          Shall the appointment be confirmed?

Byerly, Francis, of Barron, as a member of the Livestock Facility Siting Review Board, to serve for the term ending May 1, 2015.  

Engelbrecht, Lee, of Two Rivers, as a member of the Livestock Facility Siting Review Board, to serve for the term ending May 1, 2017. 

Gaska, Jerome, of Columbus, as a member of the Livestock Facility Siting Review Board, to serve for the term ending May 1, 2014   

Jackson, James, of Waukesha, as a Private Business/Ind Rep 2 on the Prison Industries Board, to serve for the term ending May 1, 2015. 

Selk, Robert, of Madison, as a member of the Livestock Facility Siting Review Board, to serve for the term ending May 1, 2014.  

Topel, Bob, of Waterloo, as a member of the Livestock Facility Siting Review Board, to serve for the term ending May 1, 2016.   

Eighth Order.                      Messages from the Assembly.

Ninth Order.                        Special Orders.

Tenth Order.                       Consideration of motions, resolutions, and joint resolutions not requiring a third reading.

QUESTION:          Shall the joint resolution be adopted?

Senate Joint Resolution 63.  Relating to: honoring the life and public service of James Jeskewitz. .

QUESTION:          Shall the joint resolution be concurred in?

Assembly Joint Resolution 29.  Relating to: the life and public service of Judge William J. Duffy. 

Eleventh Order.                  Second reading and amendments of senate joint resolutions and senate bills.

QUESTION:          Shall the bill be ordered to a third reading?

Senate Bill 375.  Relating to: the use of an epinephrine auto-injector on school premises or at a school-sponsored activity. 

Senate Bill 389.  Relating to: indexing for inflation of, and making other changes to, the college savings plan income tax deduction.  

Senate Bill 416.  Relating to: a pupil's possession and use of an epinephrine auto-injector. 

Senate Bill 449.  Relating to: authorizing the transfer of certain tax credits earned in connection with economic development in this state.

Twelfth Order.                    Second reading and amendments of assembly joint resolutions and assembly bills.

QUESTION:          Shall the bill be ordered to a third reading?

Assembly Bill 17.  Relating to: the restoration of information from an original birth certificate after adoption.  

Assembly Bill 360.  Relating to: emergency detention, involuntary commitment, and privileged communications and information.  

Assembly Bill 435.  Relating to: admission of minors for inpatient treatment. 

Assembly Bill 450.  Relating to: grants for crisis intervention team training and making an appropriation.

Assembly Bill 452.  Relating to: child psychiatry consultation program and making an appropriation.  

Assembly Bill 453.  Relating to: uses and disclosures of protected health information. 

Assembly Bill 454.  Relating to: creation of a primary care and psychiatry shortage grant program, exempting from taxation amounts received from such a grant program, granting rule-making authority, and making an appropriation. 

Assembly Bill 455.  Relating to: grants to counties to contract for peer-run respite centers and making an appropriation. 

Assembly Bill 456.  Relating to: reporting on county performance on providing core mental health services and requiring the exercise of rule-making authority. 

Assembly Bill 458.  Relating to: mental health benefits and reimbursement for mental health services under the Medical Assistance program.

Assembly Bill 459.  Relating to: individual placement and support program for employment of individuals experiencing mental illness and making an appropriation. 

Assembly Bill 460.  Relating to: grants to mental health mobile crisis units and making an appropriation.

Assembly Bill 488.  Relating to: involuntary commitment proceedings and limited appearance by corporation counsel. 

Thirteenth Order.               Third reading of joint resolutions and bills.

Fourteenth Order.               Motions may be offered.

Fifteenth Order.                  Announcements, adjournment honors, and remarks under special privilege.

Sixteenth Order.                 Adjournment.

State of the State Address Tonight at 7 PM

Governor Walker’s 2014 State of the State address to the Joint Convention of the State Legislature is scheduled January 22, 2014, at 7 PM.  The 2014 State of the State Address is scheduled to be live on the internet at http://www.wiseye.org/,  Time Warner Cable Channel 363, Charter Cable Channel 995, and Wisconsin Public Television Stations throughout Wisconsin.

Preview of Governor Walker’s State of the State Address

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State Senator Lazich’s Statement on State of the State Address

State Senator Mary Lazich (R-New Berlin) released the following statement about Governor’s Walker’s State of the State address.

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Veteran Status Indicator for Wisconsin Driver's Licenses and Indentification cards

June 24, 2013, Governor Walker signed into law 2013 Wisconsin Act 17 allowing a veteran applying for a motor vehicle operator’s license or identification card to have his or her veteran status indicated on the license or card.

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Investing in Wisconsin’s Taxpayers and Workers; Senator Lazich's Weekly Insight

Investing in Wisconsin’s Taxpayers and Workers
Governor Walker laid out a simple, yet significant plan to provide tax relief to all Wisconsin residents during his State of the State address.  I applaud the Governor’s plan to apply $332.6 million in withholding table adjustments.  The effect on returning this money to its rightful owner will be immediate.  Workers are going to keep more of their paycheck and hard-earned money, putting more money in the hands of consumers, spurring economic and job growth throughout the state.

The Legislative Fiscal Bureau announced a projected $912 million surplus by the end of the 2013-2015 biennium.  This surplus must not be withheld from Wisconsin’s families, seniors, farmers, and business owners.  Wisconsin residents have been living in a tax hell far too long, it’s about time we get off the backs of taxpayers and provide them much needed relief.  This is taxpayers’ hard earned money; bureaucrats do not deserve to spend it.

Last fall, the legislature approved $100 million in property tax reductions.  I look forward to continuing to deliver property tax relief by voting for the Governor’s proposal to reduce property taxes by an additional $406 million.

While a vast majority of the surplus will be used to deliver much needed tax relief to all taxpayers, Governor Walker also proposed making targeted investments in worker training and education.  His proposal will invest $35 million in the Wisconsin Fast Forward program.  The investment will provide support for dual enrollment programs between school districts and technical colleges, increased funding for manufacturing, agricultural, and IT at technical colleges, and additional programs for supporting people with disabilities to enter the workforce.

I am anxious for the legislature to start work approving Governor Walker’s proposals and rapidly returning money back into your pocket.  Visit prosperity.wi.gov to use the Tax Savings Calculator to see the amount of money you may expect back, and view Governor Walker’s Blueprint for Prosperity.

The State Senate this Week
The State Senate met Wednesday with a full docket of bills.  During session the senate approved a package of  12 bills addressing mental health issues,  a bill reinstating original birth certificate information, legislation providing parents and relatives greater opportunities and incentives to set aside money in college savings programsAs a sponsor I am pleased my colleagues joined me in approving Senate Bill 375, allowing the use of epinephrine auto-injector on school premises or at a school-sponsored activity. 

Thursday, as Chair of the Senate Committee on Elections and Urban Affairs I chaired a public hearing about six bills.  Public testimony was heard for the Assembly and Senate bill about nomination paper requirements, proof of residence while registering to vote, counting votes for write-in ballots, lowering signature requirements for local officials in second and third class cities to appear on the ballot, and creating a property tax exemption for nonprofit youth baseball associations.

While the legislature is not scheduled to be on the floor until February 11, 2014, the next two weeks will be filled with committee meetings.    Click here to view the schedule of upcoming committee hearings.  

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Great News for Taxpayers; Senator Lazich's Weekly Insight

Great News for Taxpayers

The Legislative Fiscal Bureau calculates Governor Scott Walker’s tax proposals provide the average taxpayer $177 income and property tax relief.  The Tax Savings Calculator at prosperity.wi.gov allows you to calculate the amount of money you may expect.  You may also view Governor Walker’s Blueprint for Prosperity at the link.  

I am anxious for the legislature to approve Governor Walker’s proposals and return money to your pocket.  The nearly $2 billion tax relief this biennium will directly stimulate economic activity across the state.  Our economy is showing consistent growth as the Governor continues to work with the legislature to relieve residents from Wisconsin’s heavy tax burden.  

Southeast Wisconsin Home to Wisconsin’s Manufacturing Industry 
Wisconsin’s manufacturing industry continues to show growth.  The State gained over 3,000 manufacturing jobs during July 2012 to July 2013, according to the 2014 Wisconsin Manufacturers Register.  

There are over 500,000 Wisconsinites employed in Wisconsin’s manufacturing industry, with over 300,000 of these jobs located in Southeast Wisconsin.

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