MON AM News: Filling gaps in rural health care with nursing student placements; Dem presidential candidates joining Enbridge pipeline debate

— A partnership between Monroe Clinic-SSM Health and UW-Madison’s School of Nursing aims to fill gaps in care by placing nursing students in rural areas. 

“This relationship with the School of Nursing helps us recruit,” said Monroe Clinic CEO Mike Sanders. “We hear from people that they did not know you could have a practice like this in a small community, with access to technology and specialties but with a small-town feel.”

Monroe Clinic has 11 clinics in southwestern Wisconsin and Illinois, which receive more than 200,000 patients each year. They’re staffed by 85 physicians and up to 50 advanced practice practitioners, who are mostly nurses. 

These nurses-to-be need several field placements as part of their education, and UW-Madison says these placements are attracting nurse practitioners to stay and work at some of these clinics. These locations present an opportunity for nursing students pursuing a doctorate of nursing practice, according to the university.

Since the partnership began four years ago, three of the nursing students have returned to work at Monroe Clinic as nurse practitioners. 

One of those students, Sarah Smith, is now an adult-geriatric primary care nurse practitioner at the company’s central clinic in Monroe. Through the partnership program, she was placed at a branch in Illinois for two cycles. 

“It was a very small rural clinic, and I got to see a lot of different issues, which is what interested me in rural work in general and in Monroe Clinic in particular,” Smith said in a release. 

According to Pamela Ann McGranahan, director of the DNP program at UW-Madison and associate clinical professor of nursing, students placed at rural clinics often face challenges they might not expect. 

See more: 

— U.S. Sen. Bernie Sanders is calling for Enbridge to shut down a pipeline that transports oil and natural gas from Superior to Ontario, Canada by way of Michigan. 

The Vermont Independent in a tweet last week called on Enbridge to nix plans for a replacement tunnel for the 66-year-old Line 5, citing an oil spill nine years ago on a different Enbridge line. 

“Today, with the climate crisis worsening, we must #ShutDownLine5 pipeline in Michigan and ban all new fossil fuel infrastructure. What we need is a Green New Deal,” he tweeted. 

Sanders is the second Dem presidential candidate to call for the line to be shut down. Earlier this month, Washington Gov. Jay Inslee in a series of tweets described the tunnel and the pipeline as “a clear and present threat to the health of the Great Lakes and to our climate.” 

Line 5 is also facing legal challenges in Wisconsin after the Bad River Band of Lake Superior Chippewa Indians filed suit in federal court earlier this week in hopes of removing the pipeline from part of the 125,000-acre reservation in northern Wisconsin. The lawsuit alleges the pipeline is on the verge of spilling its contents into the surrounding environment. 

In a release, the Canadian company says it’s “surprised and disappointed” by the lawsuit but indicated it’s open to potentially rerouting the pipeline that passes through 12 miles of tribal land. 

See an earlier story on the lawsuit: 

See the Sanders tweet: 

See the Inslee tweets: 

See the latest comments from Enbridge: 

— Gov. Tony Evers has announced a host of appointments to the Task Force on Payroll Fraud and Worker Misclassification. 

Department of Workforce Development Secretary Caleb Frostman is set to lead the effort. The panel also includes officials from DWD’s divisions of worker’s compensation, unemployment insurance and equal rights. Assistant AG Michael Morris, DOR Assistant Deputy Secretary Maria Guerra Lapacek and OCI Examiner Andrew Stoughton round out the appointments from within the Evers administration. 

Sen. Dave Hansen of Green Bay and Rep. Chris Sinicki of Milwaukee will represent legislative Dems while Sen. Dale Kooyenga of Brookfield has been named the designee for the Senate majority caucus. 

The release listed the Assembly majority caucus representative as vacant. An Evers spokeswoman told that Speaker Robin Vos, R-Rochester, did not submit a nomination. But Vos spokeswoman indicated the Speaker’s office nominated Rep. Rob Brooks, R-Saukville, to fill the role. 

Also serving on the task force will be Andy Buck, who will serve as the workers representative, and Pete Braun, who will be the business community representative. Buck is the director of government affairs for the International Union of Painters and Allied Trades District Council 7. Braun is the owner and CEO of Wall-tech, a construction provider based out of DeForest. 

Five public members have also been appointed to the panel. 

See the release: 

— The state Department of Workforce Development is awarding more than $1.6 million in Fast Forward grants to employers around the state, supporting training efforts for nearly 900 workers. 

Green Bay Packaging is getting $400,000 to provide training to six unemployed individuals, 28 new hires and 152 existing workers. These employees will learn to operate the new equipment at the company’s mill, with training provided by Rockwell Automation and Voith. 

Gehl Foods, a manufacturer based in Germantown, is receiving $367,890 to train 50 new hires and 103 existing workers on new bottle-filling equipment. 

Stevens Construction Corp. is getting $269,188 to train 16 unemployed, 208 new hires and 78 existing workers. They’ll receive “specialized laborer training,” including fall protection, welding, concrete, carpentry and more. 

And Blackhawk Transport, based in Beloit, is getting $204,873 to partner with Blackhawk Technical College to provide commercial driver training for 60 unemployed individuals. Trainees will get 37 hours of training toward their license, also taking part in a 13-week ride-along training period. 

The other grants are for between $47,000 and $89,000, supporting training efforts in communities across the state. 

See a full list of grants: 

— NorthStar Medical Radioisotopes has been awarded $15 million in a cooperative agreement with the U.S. Department of Energy’s National Nuclear Security Administration. 

The DOE/NNSA will match NorthStar funding dollar for dollar, with the current agreement capped at $30 million in total funds from both parties.

“We greatly appreciate this new cooperative agreement award and the continued financial and technical support provided by DOE/NNSA, which will help NorthStar expand Mo-99 production capacity and efficiency, as well as support enhancements to the RadioGenix System to continue optimizing utility in radiopharmacies,” NorthStar CEO Stephen Merrick said in a statement.

See more at Madison Startups: 

— UW-Madison’s Office of Business Engagement is holding its Day on Campus event Aug. 15, featuring panelists from Foxconn, American Family Insurance and Lands’ End. 

OBE’s managing director, Amy Achter, will discuss the process for partnering with the university. Chris Johnson, director of the UW Flight Lab and an engineering professor, will give a talk on drones.  

Other speakers will touch on diversity and inclusion and design thinking, as well as applications for quantum science and mathematical modeling. And a campus showcase will highlight the work various departments are doing, with a focus on potential research partnerships. 

See more on the event and register here: 

Listen to a recent podcast with Achter: 

Listen to an earlier podcast with Johnson: 


# Railroad won’t support more Hiawatha trains without Illinois track improvements

# Dane manure digester purchased by California-based company to sell biogas

# Southeastern Wisconsin counties come out on top for 2019 tariff aid payments

# Bringing the Milwaukee Athletic Club into the 21st Century



– Dane County multi-farm digester sold to California firm

– Wisconsin Holstein State Fair Futurity now open to all breeds


– Couture developer won’t meet Friday HUD loan deadline, in another setback

– Couture developer lets HUD loan application deadline expire, still working on project financing

– Couture developer still seeking financing, lets HUD loan guarantee approval lapse

– Report: Construction costs fall, employment growth softens in 2Q


– Yelp data puts Milwaukee #1 for growth


– Milwaukee Film Festival expanding to two new theaters

– Milwaukee Film Festival will have more theaters, screens in use for 2019


– Wisconsin residents consider future recreation, natural resources on Mississippi River


– Modern Candy Company puts CBD in sweets


– Proposed meningococcal vaccine requirement for Wisconsin students faces pushback

– Suicide Prevention Task Force to meet in Marshfield


– MGIC makes leadership changes, names Tim Mattke CEO


– Milwaukee Journal Sentinel heads to reasonably priced offices in fashionable East Town


– Evers announces members of worker misclassification task force

– Bernie Sanders calls for shutdown of Michigan oil pipeline


– Condo in The Moderne sold for $1.2 million

– Racine could support $26M apartment development on the Root River

– Mixed-income 111-unit family and senior apartment complex proposed for north side–unit-family-and-senior-apartment-complex-proposed/article_fae4784b-3432-52ee-ab8f-db8e236cdee2.html


– Experts layout ideas for controlling CWD


– Pearl Mist returns to Port Milwaukee


– 17,000-panel solar array may be coming to Middleton; MGE will give city, schools access to power


<i>See these and other press releases: </i>

Enbridge: Committed to working with Bad River Band

Tax the Rich: Bus Tour joined by elected officials and local activists

Fox Cities Chamber: Announces Calkins as June Ambassador of the month

Wisconsin Department of Agriculture, Trade, and Consumer Protection: Statement from Sec. Brad Pfaff