MADISON April 24, 2013 – Today, a group of Assembly Democratic Legislators announced the formation of a Rural Caucus whose focus will be raising awareness and advocating on behalf of the people and communities of rural Wisconsin. The Rural Caucus will kick off with a series of listening sessions on the 2013-2015 Wisconsin State Budget.
“Too often, the needs of rural communities are ignored or put behind the needs of urban and suburban areas of the state. Working together, rural legislators will have the political clout and the numbers to balance the influence that legislators representing more populous parts of the state have,” noted State Representative Janet Bewley (Ashland), who will serve as chair of the group. “The Rural Caucus can be a focal point and direct avenue for rural residents and organizations to get their message across to the entire Wisconsin State Legislature,” added Representative Janis Ringhand (Evansville), who is serving as vice-chair.
“Unfortunately, the debate in the Legislature frequently centers on just Madison and Milwaukee. This is unfair to all the residents who live in other parts of the state,” said Representative Amy Sue Vruwink (Milladore). “The challenges rural communities face are different than the ones urban and suburban communities face. I felt it was important that rural Wisconsin be adequately represented, especially during budget negotiations, which is why I’ve joined the Rural Caucus,” added Representative Fred Clark (Sauk City).
In an effort to ensure that this state budget represents all Wisconsinites, members of the Rural Caucus will be holding budget listening sessions in rural communities across the state. The first four are listed below. The listening sessions are open to the public and legislators who represent these areas have been invited to attend. “This is just the first step in the process,” explained Representative Chris Danou (Trempealeau), “the Rural Caucus intends to continue meeting on important rural issues, including broadband, schools, local road aids and healthcare access.”
Saturday, May 11th
1:30- 3:30 pm
Monroe City Hall, Lower Level
1110 18th Ave, Monroe, WI 53566