TUE AM News: Bill aims to expand farm exports; under 18 group leading weekly case counts

— Republicans and ag groups have rolled out legislation aimed at expanding the state’s farm exports by at least 25 percent in coming years.

State Rep. Tony Kurtz of Wonewoc and Sen. Joan Ballweg of Markesan in a press conference promoted the bill as a means to help raise ag prices and protect farmers by expanding and diversifying market demand.

“Now more than ever it is important that we do everything we can to ensure the vitality of these markets into the future,” Ballweg told reporters.

The bill would require the Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection in partnership with the Wisconsin Economic Development Corp. to develop a plan to boost dairy, meat and crop values by at least 25 percent in the next five years. It would require DATCP to spend $5 million on the effort and request that the Joint Finance Committee allocate the agency funding for the program.

Additionally, at least 15 percent of the funding would have to go toward grants for Wisconsin exporters.

Read the full story at WisBusiness.com: https://www.wisbusiness.com/2021/bill-aims-to-expand-farm-exports/ 

— Preliminary data from the Department of Health Services show those under 18 have been leading all other age groups for raw weekly case counts for over a month. 

Early data from DHS show that this group brought in more confirmed cases — 4,225 — than any other age group for over a month. This was followed by residents aged 25-34, who had about 3,610 confirmed cases. 

Wisconsin started seeing an upward curve in daily case averages in early March. Since the beginning of March, the average number of daily cases has more than doubled, from a seven-day average of under 400 cases per day in early March to 789 today.

The 25-34 age group leads for the most COVID-19 cases since the start of the pandemic. That group has led since mid-October. 

Last week was the 10th consecutive week the 65 and older group had the least amount of new cases of any other age group. But individuals under the age of 18 account for the least amount of cumulative confirmed cases of all other age groups.

Wisconsin reported 402 new COVID-19 cases coming into today and three new deaths from the virus, according to the Department of Health Services.

The state reports 8,428 active cases and 585,710 cases since the start of the pandemic.

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— Construction Business Group is launching a new public information campaign to educate the public on worker misclassification and payroll fraud in the construction industry.

The campaign, titled #FightTheFraud, focuses on the 15,000 workers who are misclassified by their construction companies each year in Wisconsin. It also highlights the impacts on those workers and the state’s tax revenues. 

“Most people are unaware of what is going on behind closed doors for thousands of construction workers across Wisconsin,” CBG Executive Director Robb Kahl said. “From workers getting paid in gift cards to having no benefits, action is needed to remedy these unfair practices.”

The campaign aims to both educate the public and achieve legislative changes this budget cycle. CBG will be running radio and digital ads, producing unique social content, and engaging with media and lawmakers to get the word out to all corners of the state. 

CBG will highlight three major items in its campaign including $200 million in lost tax revenue, insurance fraud and wage theft.

See recent WisBusiness.com stories on the issue:

“Union rep urges state Legislature to tackle payroll fraud:” https://www.wisbusiness.com/2021/union-rep-urges-state-legislature-to-tackle-payroll-fraud/ 

“Construction groups support proposals to combat worker misclassification:” https://www.wisbusiness.com/2021/construction-groups-support-proposals-to-combat-worker-misclassification/ 

— The second virtual event of the New North Summit series is Wednesday. 

Every year, New North, Inc. hosts a regional summit event to bring together business, education and community leaders statewide to network and share economic development updates. Each year, the New North Summit draws nearly 700 attendees.

This year’s theme “Playbook for Recovery” is unlike any other summit. Three virtual events lead up to the in-person summit at Lambeau Field. The virtual “pre-game” was held March 11.

Wednesday from 9-10 a.m. is the business and community growth training camp. Register here: https://events.r20.constantcontact.com/register/eventReg?oeidk=a07ehb7s6ysb8da682d&oseq=&c=&ch 

The next training camp event is May 12. The summit will wrap up in-person at Lambeau Field on June 10.

— The Wisconsin Startup Coalition is in the midst of  advocacy week, which aims to increase awareness of the role startups play in growing the state’s economy.

Happening now through Thursday, Wisconsin Startup Coalition members will hear from Wisconsin Economic Development Corp. Secretary and CEO Missy Hughes. Then, members will connect with more than 30 lawmakers on issues related to growing the amount of startup activity in the state.

The coalition is pushing policies to attract technology talent, venture capital and other resources startups need to thrive in Wisconsin. Founded in 2020 the coalition represents nearly 100 members across the state of Wisconsin who are founding, investing in or supporting startup companies. 

— Accounting firm BDO says the Wisconsin Family Business of the Year Awards won’t happen this year. 

The company cited the patchwork of reopening guidelines nationwide across states and municipalities for making the decision. Instead, the global firm hopes to see its signature event continue in May 2022. 

In lieu of the awards, BDO is hosting a Wisconsin Family Business Ambassador Roundtable. This virtual event brings the firm’s Wisconsin Family Business leaders together to connect with other business leaders and share how they are managing through the current crisis and beyond. 

See more: http://familybusinessaward.com/ 


# Some Wisconsin school districts begin planning for early start date this fall 


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# Visit Milwaukee teams with Wisconsin Center District on campaign to attract business meetings 




– Online Championship Cheese Auction Raises $39,000 http://wisconsinagconnection.com/story-state.php?Id=368&yr=2021


– PNC names new regional president, head of corporate banking for Wisconsin https://www.bizjournals.com/milwaukee/news/2021/04/12/pnc-names-new-regional-president-wisconsin.html


– Kraus-Anderson building 593-seat arts auditorium in Wisconsin https://rejournals.com/kraus-anderson-building-593-seat-arts-auditorium-in-wisconsin/

– Federal funding expected to help state road repairs https://www.apg-wi.com/price_county_review/free/federal-funding-expected-to-help-state-road-repairs/article_18f7c082-9b92-11eb-89b3-238cb68bcad4.html


– Wisconsin local governments to receive $2.3 billion over next 2 years https://www.superiortelegram.com/news/government-and-politics/6980680-Wisconsin-local-governments-to-receive-2.3-billion-over-next-2-years

– Wisconsin Lawmakers Hold 1st Of 4 Public Hearings On State Budget https://www.seehafernews.com/2021/04/12/wisconsin-lawmakers-hold-1st-of-4-public-hearings-on-state-budget/


– Wisconsin’s Child Care System Doesn’t Work Well For Anyone — And The Pandemic Made It Worse https://www.wpr.org/wisconsins-child-care-system-doesnt-work-well-anyone-and-pandemic-made-it-worse

– State orders Burlington schools to fix racial environment https://www.channel3000.com/state-orders-burlington-schools-to-fix-racial-environment/


– Time to weigh in on Wisconsin’s fall deer hunt https://www.duluthnewstribune.com/northland-outdoors/6975681-Time-to-weigh-in-on-Wisconsins-fall-deer-hunt

– Wisconsin Supreme Court hears arguments in key environmental cases https://madison.com/wsj/news/local/environment/wisconsin-supreme-court-hears-arguments-in-key-environmental-cases/article_7dd32a48-88f2-547e-b6d4-dac4c2f32863.html


– With ample supply, Wisconsin Center accepts walk-ins for COVID-19 vaccine https://www.wisn.com/article/wisconsin-center-accepting-walk-ins-for-vaccine-ample-supply/36088673


– Local Governments Will Get Billions In COVID-19 Relief. Now, They’re Figuring Out How To Spend It https://www.wpr.org/local-governments-will-get-billions-covid-19-relief-now-theyre-figuring-out-how-spend-it


– White House Convenes Summit To Address Supply Shortage Crippling Auto Plants https://www.wpr.org/white-house-convenes-summit-address-supply-shortage-crippling-auto-plants


– White House gives report cards on states’ infrastructure needs; Wisconsin gets a ‘C’ https://wkow.com/2021/04/12/white-house-gives-report-cards-on-states-infrastructure-needs-wisconsin-gets-a-c/


– Real estate spotlight: Inventory shortage could mean difficult months ahead for Milwaukee-area housing market https://biztimes.com/real-estate-spotlight-inventory-shortage-could-mean-difficult-months-ahead-for-milwaukee-area-housing-market/

– Taco John’s, Scooter’s Coffee proposed in West Milwaukee, Aloha Poke opens https://www.bizjournals.com/milwaukee/news/2021/04/12/taco-johns-scooters-coffee-proposed-quick-bites.html


– AutoZone store planned on East Capitol Drive https://biztimes.com/new-autozone-store-planned-on-east-capitol-drive/


– Steve Cahalan: Resale shop opens downtown on Saturday https://lacrossetribune.com/business/steve-cahalan-resale-shop-opens-downtown-on-saturday/article_73f8f1e4-4f57-5f6e-b342-cc564ee6e7b9.html


– Green Bay Packers’ Titletown District office building lands its second tenant https://www.greenbaypressgazette.com/story/money/2021/04/12/miron-lease-space-green-bay-packers-titletown-district-office-building/7163824002/


– Madison College first in Wisconsin to use virtual reality learning https://wqow.com/2021/04/12/madison-college-first-in-wisconsin-to-use-virtual-reality-learning/


– Milwaukee Public Museum’s proposed new home could get a $150,000 state grant to help fund its site preparation work. https://www.jsonline.com/story/money/real-estate/commercial/2021/04/12/milwaukee-public-museum-seeks-150-000-state-grant-new-site-work/7191211002/


– Lane to be closed on Wisconsin Ave. in Grand Chute https://fox11online.com/news/local/lane-to-be-closed-on-wisconsin-ave-in-grand-chute

– Highway 23 eastbound off-ramp at 57 closed this week https://whbl.com/2021/04/12/highway-23-eastbound-off-ramp-at-57-closed-this-week/


– Millions granted in energy assistance as disconnections to resume https://www.fox6now.com/news/millions-granted-in-energy-assistance-as-disconnections-to-resume


<i>See these and other press releases: 

https://www.wisbusiness.com/press-releases/ </i>

– Dept. of Military Affairs: Revamped comprehensive health and wellness leaders course gives Wisconsin National Guard leaders the tools to help troops find balance

– PSC: Urges consumers to seek assistance before moratorium on utility disconnections end

– DHS: Reaffirms that every Wisconsinite can get COVID-19 vaccine

– Construction Business Group: Launches campaign to combat worker misclassification