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AMKE: The List 9-19-11

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1. AMKE News Rundown

The White House is going to propose a new tax rate for people earning more than $1 million a year. Officials say this will ensure that they pay at least the same percentage of their earnings in taxes as middle-income Americans. President Obama will talk about the new proposal sometime today while also mentioning several other tax changes.

Former Wisconsin Congressman and U.S. Rep Mark Green is joining Tommy Thompson’s team. Thompson hasn't announced that he's running for the U.S. Senate seat just yet, but he said Green would join his team as co-chair. Mark green served in Congress for eight years before losing his bid as governor in 2006.

Milwaukee's first near-zero waste music festival, Rock the Green, hit Veteran's Park yesterday. We just wrapped up our first week in Make a Difference where we focused on the environment and if you missed the festival yesterday, some things that stood out were that the sound, lights and interactive areas were run by generators using biodiesel fuel. Goodwill was there to sell t-shirts at a low, affordable price from their in store collection but a Rock the Green logo on each shirt and local vendors were on site to educate the public about environmental awareness.

Milwaukee's War Memorial Center needs $5.3 million in repairs. This is because of a long-term leakage problem that buckles floor, produces a musty odor and is threatening the $750 million art collection. The groundwater seepage is continuing to damage the wood floor in the Milwaukee Art Museum gallery space that's housed in the war memorial. There's no word yet on when work will start for some of these repairs.

Milwaukee’s Riverwalk celebrated 20 years this past weekend. There's a lot of housing, corporate headquarters and restaurants that make up the Riverwalk, but over the past two decades the river has been rediscovered in a sense. That's due in large part to the Riverwalk District, which is a public-private group that helps finances the Riverwalk. Several more improvements are in the works for expanding the Riverwalk in the coming years.

The Greater Milwaukee Committee is launching a new initiative in hopes to attract design, technology and innovation companies to Milwaukee. The initiative is through a $500,000 grant and the group, Innovation in Milwaukee, will focus on developing talent, enhancing economic development opportunities for existing companies and future technologies. The effort will be based out of Grand Avenue Mall, which will help out the mall by filling some of those empty storefronts we've been seeing.