December 8, 2017
Wisconsin's 12th Senate District contains communities in Florence, Forest, Langlade, Lincoln, Marathon, Marinette, Menominee, Oconto, Oneida, Shawano, and Vilas Counties.

Committee Assignments:
  • Joint Committee on Finance
  • Sporting Heritage, Mining, and Forestry Committee (Chair)
  • Agriculture, Small Business, and Tourism Committee (Vice-Chair)
  • Revenue, Financial Institutions, and Rural Issues Committee
  • Joint Survey Committee on Tax Exemptions
Legislative Update
I had the opportunity to testify this week in front of the Assembly Committee on Natural Resources and Sporting Heritage in favor of AB 626, relating to establishing an open season for hunting deer with muzzle-loading firearms within the Apostle Islands National Lakeshore.

I co-authored this legislation with Representative Beth Meyers (D-Bayfield) to address unintended consquences of 2011 Wisconsin Act 50. This act banned a gun deer season prior to the Saturday before Thanksgiving with the exception of the youth hunt, disabled hunter deer hunt, and the Learn to Hunt programs. 

Traditionally, the Apostle Islands muzzleloader season takes place in October allowing for ease of boat travel to the island that wouldn't be possible in November. This legislation provides a solution that allows the DNR to establish a fall open season for hunting deer within the Apostle Islands National Lakeshore prior to the Saturday before Thanksgiving.
Rep. Meyers and I testified in front of the Assembly Committee on Natural Resources and Sporting Heritage on Tuesday.
US 8/WIS 47

The Wisconsin Department of Transportation (DOT) will be hosting a public involvement meeting to discuss the proposed reconstruction of the US 8/WIS 47 intersection in Rhinelander.

The DOT is conducting the meeting to receive public input on two proposals to address the safety needs of the intersection:
  • Reconstructing the intersection, keeping it signalized, and making modifications to its operations.
  • Reconstructing the intersection as a roundabout.
The DOT has not formally decided on a proposal, but they intend the final project to occur in 2019. I have included the details for the meeting below:

Tuesday, December 12 from 5:30 to 7:00 p.m.
Rhinelander City Hall
135 S Stevens Street, Rhinelander

For more information about the project or the meeting, please click here.
Vilas County SafeRide

Vilas County became the newest county to begin a SafeRide program. The SafeRide progam allows Tavern League members to provide free taxi rides for people who are too intoxicated to drive. The program is available to all bar patrons, not just the drivers. 

The Wisconsin Department of Transportation has awarded Vilas County with a $10,000 grant to begin the program. The Vilas County Tavern League will also help provide financial support for the program.

I believe that the start of this program will help people get home safely, while keeping our roads safer. This is great news for Vilas County! I'd like to thank Dan Ullsperger, owner of Buckshot's in Eagle River, for his leadership in starting this program.

For more infromation about the SafeRide program, please click here.
White Space

Fast, reliable internet access gives businesses increased opportunities to create jobs and reach beyond their current marketplace. Additionally, the same access increases educational opportunities for individuals of all ages. It is imperative that in today's world, we seek to expand access to fast, reliable internet. 

There are communities across the 12th Senate District that have seen the tremendous transformation that broadband can provide. Unfortunately, the expansion process can be timely and many of our communities remain without reliable access.

Representative Felzkowski (R-Irma) and I believe that while the state is working with communities to successfully expand broadband access to underserved communities, we need to look towards additional options for expansion. With that goal in mind, we sent a letter to the FCC asking them to adopt regulations that will allow for the use of TV white space (unused spectrum between TV stations) to broadcast high speed internet.

If the FCC approved the regulations, internet providers would be able to deliver internet that is four times faster than Wi-Fi. White space technology has been successfully tested in 20 pilot efforts connecting 185,000 people.

This week, Governor Walker echoed these sentiments by also calling on the FCC to finalize rules that would allow the use of white space technology. The FCC is currently considering adopting rules that would allow at least three white space channels in every U.S market to provide broadband internet. 

I believe that this could be transformational for many communities in the 12th Senate District. I look forward to continuing this conversation so that those currently living without access can have this opportunity afforded to them.
Bald Eagles
The 45th annual bald eagle nest survey results have been released. This year, Wisconsin saw a 5.7% increase in nests bringing the total to 1,590, a state record. When the survey began in the early 1970s, there were 108 bald eagle nests statewide. 

In addition to breaking the state record, the 2017 survey also found the first bald eagle nest in Kenosha County. As of now, 70 of the 72 Wisconsin counties have at least a single bald eagle nest. Walworth and Milwaukee counties remain without a nest. Vilas and Oneida County have the highest populations of eagles in the state.

This year's survey results were significant because they indicate that some of the northern counties may be nearing their biological carrying capacity. For example, for the first time since 1974, no new eagle nests were found in Oneida County.

For more information on the survey results, please click here.
2017-18 Blue Books
The 2017-18 Wisconsin Blue Books recently arrived. If you would like to request a copy of the 2017-18 Wisconsin Blue Book, please reply to this email with your full mailing address. My office will be processing the requests over the next couple weeks prior to shipping them across the 12th Senate District. 

You can view previous versions of the Wisconsin Blue Book online by clicking here.
District 12 Events
Start Date Upcoming Event Location
December 10 Christmas Crunch Bizarre Phelps
December 10 Brunch with Santa Cecil
December 15 Olde Time Community Christmas Presque Isle
December 21 Sno-Eagles Guided Snowmobile Rides Eagle River
December 25 Annual Christmas Day Dinner Amberg
December 26-31 Marvel in Manitowish Waters Manitowish Waters
December 31 Red Hot Fun New Year's Celebration Woodruff
December 31 Legion New Year's Eve Party Three Lakes
January 1 Annual Polar Plunge Tomahawk
January 12-14 Trig's Smokehouse Vintage World Championship Derby Eagle River
January 13 Arctic Warrior Race St. Germain
January 13 Lake Nokomis AMVET Fishing Tournament Nokomis
January 13 Laona Lions Annual Predator Hunt Cavour
January 27 Paul Bunyan Snow Fun Day Lakewood
January 27 Roberts Memorial Ski Race Florence
January 27-28 Winterfest Sled Dog Race Merrill
February 3 Bridge Runners Classic Cruise Vintage and Antique Snowmobile Ride Deerbrook
February 3 Ice Fishing Jamboree Conover
February 3 10th Annual Frozen Tozen Boulder Junction
February 3-4 Dog Days of Winter Festival Doty
February 7-8 Annual Groomer Show St. Germain
February 9-11 13th Annual Labatt Blue Adult Pond Hockey Championship Eagle River
February 10 Keyes Peak Snowmobile Championship Races Florence
February 17 Northwoods Blizzard Blast Conover
February 17 43rd Annual Red Arrow Fish-a-Ree Townsend
Contact Me:
Mail: Senator Tom Tiffany, PO Box 7882, Madison, WI, 53707
Phone: (608) 266-2509  Fax: (608) 282-3552
As always, if you have any events for our calendar, comments or thoughts regarding the subjects of this newsletter, please feel free to contact me.
Copyright © 2017 Office of State Senator Tom Tiffany, All rights reserved.

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