One of the most important duties I have serving as your Governor is to provide you directly with updates related to the operation of our state government. I also frequently provide updates on Facebook (Governor Scott Walker) and Twitter (@GovWalker). Please feel free to share this update with your family, friends, and others who may be interested in state government operations.
Wisconsin Walleye Initiative Announced
Fishing is such an important part of Wisconsin's sporting heritage, and the demand for walleye continues to increase. With this historic investment, we are making long-term improvements to Wisconsin's lakes and our state's fishing and tourism industries. I thank Senator Joe Leibham (R-Sheboygan) and Representative Dan LeMahieu (R-Cascade) for their work on this initiative.
The Wisconsin Walleye Initiative includes the following:
· $8.2 million in existing unencumbered bonding authority to expand hatchery capacities.
· $1.8 million for operating costs over the biennium.
· $2 million over the biennium for a competitive grant program for private organizations to expand walleye production and to cover operational costs.
· $160,000 in one-time funds for the UW-Extension to continue their work with private aquaculture through the end of fiscal year 2014.
· $500,000 annually beginning in fiscal year 2015 to contract with organizations to acquire additional walleye fingerlings.
· $250,000 annually to expand the summer Tribal Youth Program. The program is a state-tribal partnership giving high school-aged tribal youth the opportunity to work on natural resource-related projects.
Under this initiative, production is estimated to increase from 60,000--120,000 large walleye fingerlings to well over 500,000 by 2016.
I look forward to getting out on Lake Namakagon tomorrow to celebrate the Governor's Fishing Opener and the beginning of the fishing season. Hopefully, the fish will be biting.
Developing our Workforce for the Jobs of Tomorrow
This week, the Department of Workforce Development (DWD) hosted the Southeast Wisconsin Career Expo at the University of Wisconsin-Parkside's Sports & Activity Center. Over 70 employers and hundreds of job seekers attended the event, which is the third such event hosted by DWD. Prior to the event, all of the job seekers completed a pre-screening process, including developing a resume and cover letter and one-on-one counseling to ensure they have the skills they need to begin work today.
Secretary Newson knows of at least 200 job offers that were extended during the Expo. The following are positions registered employers are looking to fill: CNC Machinists, IT Technician, Registered Nurses, firefighters and police officers, and sales representatives.
As of today, there are 44, 371 job openings posted on the DWD's Job Center website. You can find information about current job openings by clicking here.
Career expos are just one way the Department is working to connect workers with jobs. Wisconsin's apprenticeship program has a long history of training workers for jobs. Secretary Newson visited Sargento Foods on Monday to highlight the program and draw attention to the tools it provides. Sargento Foods currently has two apprentices-in-training and has graduated a total of 14 individuals since 1993.
The apprenticeship program is a four- to five-year program and, upon completion, graduates are able to find good-paying jobs. In addition to training with the employer, apprentices are able to take classes at local technical colleges. In 2012, 9,608 apprentices took part in training in over 200 occupations. You can learn more about the apprenticeship program by clicking here.
Kickoff of the Law Enforcement Torch Run
I joined Attorney General J.B. Van Hollen on Wednesday at the 27th annual Law Enforcement Torch Run kickoff for the Special Olympics.
Law enforcement officers will carry the Flame of Hope all around the state prior to the State Summer Special Olympics. The run is a great opportunity to highlight the Special Olympics and raise awareness about the summer games.
Devastating Tornado in Oklahoma
We are overwhelmed with grief for the lives lost and the lives destroyed by the tornadoes in Oklahoma. Tonette and I send our prayers to the victims and to those left behind to pick up the pieces, and we send our wholehearted support to the communities affected by this disaster.
Happy Memorial Day
Tonette and I wish everyone a safe and happy Memorial Day. While Memorial Day is a great chance to grill some brats and celebrate the beginning of summer, it is an honor to take this time to thank our veterans and service members for their sacrifices and service to our country. Their selflessness protects those of us here at home and the freedoms we hold so dear. Thank you to all of those who have served and to their families.
It has been a pleasure communicating with you. It is an honor to serve as your Governor and represent the residents of Wisconsin.
Governor Scott Walker