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Winter 2011 Newsletter

Winter 2011 Newsletter

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Published by 1000friends

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Published by: 1000friends on Feb 15, 2012
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 Volume 15, Number 2
Celebrating 15 Years
 They started with the trains...
1000 Friends of Wisconsin 2
1000 Friends of Wisconsin
Created to advocate and promoteuses of land, water and air that shape healthy communities wherepeople want to live, work, and play.Our work focuses on helping peoplemake the connection betweenour land use and transportationdecisions and our state’s economic,environmental and cultural health.
Board of Directors
 John Clancy,
 Milwaukee, President 
Kine Torinus,
West Bend, Past President 
Steve Born,
Margaret Burlingham,
David Cieslewicz,
Sheila Cohen,
Franc Fennessy 
 , Madison
Stan Gruszynski,
Steve Hiniker,
Lynn Hobbie,
Edward Huck 
 , Sun Prairie
Tom Lyon,
 Jean Wells,
Carla Wright,
Cross Plains
Steve Hiniker,
 Executive Director 
Kate Morgan,
Water Policy Director 
Deborah Nemeth,
 Development Director 
 John Stolzenberg,
Green Tier Consultant 
Matt Colvert Sonja Reichertz
 The Director’s Desk 
Our website has a new look.www.1kfriends.org 
Check it out!
 Friend us on FACEBOOK 
 A ew years ago we coined the term Anecdocracy or the practice o a governmentthat developed legislation based on anecdotes. We were appalled by the number o bills that were justifed by relying on various inaccurate stories and anecdotes.Sadly, that term is outdated and now even seems a little quaint. We no longer havelegislators that make up laws based on anecdotes. Now they simply make up theirown acts to justiy legislation. Tis practice deserves it own term:
Fauxtacracy: (Fōh-tock´-ră-see) Government based on alsehoods, literally “alsegovernment”. Te practice o making up acts to justiy wide ranging policy decisions based on stories, alsehoods or lies. From the French “aux,” meaning alseand “acracy” meaning system o government. Antonym: Democracy Our once proud tradition o seeking innovative policies to protect our naturalresources has gone the way o bipartisanship. Te majority party is dismantlingsuccessul environmental programs based on blatantly alse premises. Tey claimthat we can’t have a good environment and a good economy. (What a aux pas!)For example, two northern legislators (one is the Assembly Majority Leader) wantto get rid o the state’s comprehensive planning law (Smart Growth.) In order toappeal to colleagues, they maintain that Smart Growth takes away local control(actually, it guarantees local control by requiring local development decisions toinclude local input.) Tey claim that Smart Growth tells people where to live and what industry a community can have (completely alse.) Ater those alse statements they ignore any testimony that disagrees with theirpredetermined conclusion. Tey then use their majority status to pass the legislation with no minority support. Another example is a “jobs creation” bill to allow waterront property owners theability to remove several dump trucks worth o dredged material rom the lake everyear without a permit. (How will this create jobs? Tey don’t say.) Te legislatorsclaim that this will have no adverse aect on the lake. Tat’s not what the fsh think.Tis legislation would also limit the ability o the public to request a hearing on apermit application and it would require automatic approval o permit applicationsthat take “too long” to issue. (20 days is too long?)Tese same legislators always proclaim at the beginning o hearings that they are interested in protecting the environment and that they, themselves areenvironmentalists.Let’s just say that these so-called “environmentalists” are unlikely to fnd themselvesvoted into the Wisconsin Conservation Hall o Fame in Stevens Point.
3 Winter 2011
 Steve Hiniker 
It was a memorable year for the disruption, the chaosand the savage attacks on environmental programs.Nothing about 2011 was normal.
Regional Passenger Rail System
Te siege on environmental priorities actually began inDecember o 2010 when Governor-elect Scott Walkeramously turned down $810 million o ederal aid to res-establish regional passenger rail to Wisconsin. Te frstleg o the system would have linked Madison to Chicagovia Milwaukee. Te next leg would have linked thosecities to Minneapolis and St. Paul.Passenger rail had long been a bipartisan priority or thestate (ormer Republican Governor ommy Tompsonhad championed the system or more than a decade andso did Democratic Governor Jim Doyle.) Walker claimedthat the money would go back to Washington or debtrelie. It didnt - it was reallocated to Michigan and otherstates that today are putting thousands to work buildinga regional rail system that will help bring more jobs tothose states.
Despite record increases in transit ridership and the losso ederal unds or at least one major transit system in Wisconsin, Governor Walker proposed cuts that threatenthe ability o several systems to continue. Te Governorproposed taking transit unding out o the ransportationFund which would have made transit systems compete orgeneral unds with schools systems and social programs. Healso cut operating assistance by 10% starting in 2012. Whilethe legislature stopped the unds rom moving rom theransportation Fund, they approved his cuts.Representative Robin Vos - a staunch opponent o transitsystems - used his position as co-chair o the Joint FinanceCommittee to repeal Wisconsin Regional ransit Authority legislation - leaving transit systems with state cuts and no way o using local unds to replace those state cuts.
More jobs in Michigan - but not in Wisconsin. Where’s the bus?

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