Walker focuses on tax cuts & job training at stop; Deflects email related discussionSubmitted: 02/28/2014
Story By Adam Fox

RHINELANDER - Gov. Walker focused on a property/income tax cut and job training proposal while talking a small group of factory workers at Northstar Steel Fabricators in Rhinelander Friday.

But many people around the state want to hear more from Walker's time as Milwaukee County Executive.

Emails from a former Walker aide during his time with Milwaukee County were released earlier this month. They were part of an investigation into possible campaigning violations by some of Walker's staff.

Six of Walker's now former aides were convicted for campaigning on the county's time. Kelly Rindfleisch was deputy chief of staff in Milwaukee County and was convicted. Walker was never charged in the investigation.

In January, Walker told American Thinker, an online publication, that, "Governors should be defined not just by what they do and say, but who they surround themselves with."

The convicted aides, including Kelly Rindfleisch, don't work with Walker any more, but some of them played a significant role in his campaign.

Regardless, Walker didn't see their association during his time as County Executive as people he surrounded himself with.

"I think out of 79,00, a handful of people who no longer work with me, who are out of the way of the state government right now," Walker said. "Instead, the people I've got surrounding me are helping us."

Walker instead focused on his current staff and what he is trying to do with the state.

"I think most people look at the totality of my time as governor," Walker said. "They look at the team that I've comprised and the cabinet that we have here and they see results."

Walker is touring the state pushing a tax and job training proposal, which is the result of $911 million surplus.

"(The) plan puts more money back into the hands of hard-working taxpayers and invests in worker training, so that companies like Northstar Steel can continue to create jobs," Governor Walker said.

The plan would cut property taxes by $406 million and cut income taxes by $98.6 million. The income taxes focus on the lowest income tax bracket.

It would also adjust withholding of state income taxes by $322.6 million. That would let people get money back immediately from the cuts via their paycheck.

The proposal also focuses $35 million for technical colleges to eliminate waiting lists for high demand fields including manufacturing, agriculture, and Information Technology.

It would also include support for people with disabilities entering the workforce as well as high schoolers training for high demand manufacturing jobs.

"We wanted to highlight manufacturing," Walker said. "Manufacturing has been a key driver not just in our states history, but really even this last year."

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MINOCQUA - Every year thousands of kids go hungry. 

On Saturday nearly 600 volunteers from the Northwoods decided to help feed some of those children. 

The "Food for Kidz" organization, invited people to Lakeland Union High School, to help package non- perishable goods.

 The packages will be donated worldwide and to nearby food pantries.

Within the past eight years volunteers have packaged one million meals.

 Last year was the first year the organization started donating to local food pantries. 

This year volunteers will give 30,000 meals to the Northwoods community.

"It's just the recurring exuberance of the people that come in and do the packing we have many, repeat people that come year after year," said "Food for Kidz" Co-chairman John Breiten. 

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MINOCQUA - By the time most of us finish breakfast, we already start planning what to eat for lunch.

For some kids all around the world, that next meal sometimes never comes.

The Food for Kidz Minocqua committee will lend a helping hand to change that Saturday morning.

Lakeland Union High School's common area will transform into a full-blown assembly line.

Food for Kidz volunteers will pour and pack ingredients into plastic bags.

The goal is 175,000 packed meals.

Food for Kidz needs more volunteers by tomorrow to meet that goal.

"If you haven't experienced this, come out and try it and you'll go away with just a great feeling," said Food for Kidz co-chair John Breiten.

Kids and adults of all ages are welcome to walk in to volunteer.

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"It's just a great, fun community event. I think the kids especially take something away that they are giving beyond themselves," said Food for Kidz sponsor and Lakeland Union High School Spanish teacher Karen Roerich.

Walk-in volunteers are welcome to attend either packing shift tomorrow morning.

The first shift is from 8 a.m. to 10 a.m. The second shift is from 10 a.m. to 12 p.m.

If you can't make it out to Lakeland Union High School Saturday, donations are always welcome.

Call John Breiten at 715-686-7570 for more info.

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