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Sen. Baldwin Visits NTC, Talks Open Jobs and Skills GapSubmitted: 01/17/2013
Story By Lyndsey Stemm

Sen. Baldwin Visits NTC, Talks Open Jobs and Skills Gap
WAUSAU - Thousands of Wisconsinites need jobs, and employers need workers. But there's a skills gap leaving some of those jobs empty.

That's why technical colleges around the state are developing programs to help train workers, and Senator Tammy Baldwin visited one in Wausau Thursday.

The newly elected senator learned about the programs at NTC created to fill those skilled job openings. She got a look at the energy efficiency lab, and the newly constructed manufacturing lab. Baldwin last visited the school when the manufacturing lab was being built.

"I truly believe we need to keep on making things in America, and making things in Wisconsin. And so an emphasis on manufacturing is needed. Technical colleges are really playing an extraordinary role in helping address that," says Sen. Baldwin.

Senator Baldwin says helping to get more things made in Wisconsin will be a major focus during her time in the Senate.

She also reflected on what it's been like to go from representing a district to an entire state.

"Sometimes I think of the congressional districts with very arbitrary lines. You feel as strongly about an issue whether it affects somebody on one side of a county line or on the other side of a county line. The biggest difference is the opportunity to fight for all the people of this great state," says Sen. Baldwin.

Senator Baldwin will serve on the Committee on Health, Education, Labor and Pensions. She hopes what they develop there, will help Wisconsin close its skills gap.

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STEVENS POINT - Stevens Point Police are investigating an armed robbery.

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It was the 5th annual Snow Show.

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MINOCQUA - A major 'safety net' resource used by nearly 800,000 people in Wisconsin could get cut in half.
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The Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program formally known as food stamps.
" It's a fundamental lifeline," said St. Germain Sentury Foods owner David Weber.
Last Monday Weber found out a lifeline for some of his customers was at risk.

" In its current form it's a very vital necessity for the families," said Weber.
Weber's store has supported the current debit card style SNAP or food stamp program since it started in the 60s. However, the Trump administration wants to radically change SNAP to a food box delivery styled program in its 2019 budget.
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With the change low- income Americans receiving at least $90 a month would get half their benefits in the form of a "USDA Foods package."

" There may be a need for change for the SNAP program, but I'm not sure the proposed changes are the way to go," said Weber.
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" [It's a] disservice to the community and the people who receive that benefit," said Weber.
Weber said right now the current SNAP program allows people to get the food their families need when they need it.
Instead of the nearly 800,000 SNAP users in Wisconsin needing to wait for a pre-arranged box delivery.
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