Dear Friends,

The story of Wisconsin's economic rebound is just amazing.  Back when Jim Doyle was governor, our state had an unemployment rate of nearly 10 percent. Businesses were fleeing our state, and our budgets were a mess.

This week, Wisconsin's unemployment rate dipped all the way down to 3.4%. That's the lowest it's been since April of 2000.  Our state now has  the highest total labor force and employment numbers ever. Jobs are back, and our state budget has a surplus.  Wisconsin is open for business again!

One of the secrets of our success is a tax credit put into the state budget by Republicans in 2011.   According to a study from a University of Wisconsin economics professor, the Manufacturing and Agriculture tax credit is responsible for 21,000 manufacturing jobs and 42,000 jobs overall.  It's a great example of how lowering the tax burden can lead to an increase in more jobs.

As always, if you have any ideas on how to improve our great state, including how to improve the budget, please do not hesitate to contact me at  Sen.Darling@legis.wi.gov or 608-266-5830.   

On Wisconsin!

Statewide Budget Hearings Come to a Close
This week, I attended three public hearings on the governor's proposed state budget.  We visited Spooner on Tuesday, Ellsworth on Wednesday, and finished in Marinette today.  

Marinette is also the home of my colleague and fellow co-chair, State Representative John Nygren.  It was great to visit his area and hear from his constituents.

Thank you to everyone who attended any of the six public hearings throughout our great state.  The public hearings are in important part of the budget process. They help us hear from more people in more parts of the state.

There's still time to make your voice heard. You can submit comments to BudgetComments@legis.wi.gov.
How Does Wisconsin Rank?

Wisconsin's unemployment rate is down to 3.4%! How well do we stack up to other states in the Midwest?

According to the United States Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), Wisconsin has the second lowest unemployment rate in the Midwest and its more than a full point lower than the national unemployment rate.  

More people are working in Wisconsin than ever before. Employers are optimistic and you can see why! Wisconsin is working!
Around the 8th...
Richards School in Whitefish Bay visited the State Capitol this week.

Senator Alberta Darling | Sen.Darling@legis.wi.gov | 1-800-863-1113| http://darling.senate.wisconsin.gov
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