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AMKE: The List 10-20-11

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1. AMKE News Rundown

Several opponents of the plan by Governor Walker’s Administration to cut over a half a billion dollars in medicaid had the chance to speak out during a public hearing yesterday. The cuts would crack down on eligibility requirements, increase premiums and could also result in tens of thousands of people losing their coverage. Another public hearing is set for tomorrow.

There’s now a video that shows the new plan to renovate downtown’s lakefront. It was unveiled during Tuesday’s public hearing and it illistrates how a lakefront transformation could create better pedestrian access as well as opening a lot of blocks for development. It also includes tearing down lakefront freeway ramps. See the video by clicking here.

The downtown “Borders Books” sign is still up but that will soon change. It’s going to be replaced by a 24-hour Planet Fitness Health Club, which has been expanding throughout southeastern Wisconsin. It will open by December and will fill just about 19,000 square feet. The hope is that the new fitness club will attract more business to the other shops still in Grand Avenue Mall.

Vice President Joe Biden is coming to Milwaukee next Wednesday for a fundraiser for President Obama’s 2012 Victory Fund. The fund is a joint fundraising committee maintained by Obama for America and the Democratic National Committee. The event starts at 2:30 at Discovery World.

Some communities are preparing for Wisconsin’s new concealed carry law which goes into effect on November 1st. This includes setting local rules for concealed carry and posting signs banning weapons from their municipal buildings. Right now firearms are banned from the State Capitol but come November 1st, someone with a handgun in their purse or pocket could openly walk into the Capitol since they’ll be allowed in state facilities.

Wisconsin’s UW System could face deeper state funding cuts than expected. It could lose another $46 million in state taxpayer support during the 2011-2012 fiscal year and another loss of nearly $20 MILLION next fiscal year. In the coming weeks, UW Leaders will appeal for a distribution of lapse amounts that will preserve the UW’s chance to meet the needs of students and economic purpose for Wisconsin.