Dear Friends,

Happy 4th of July weekend!  I hope to see you at one of the parades next week. I included details below for all the 4th of July parades in the 8th Senate District. If you see me, please take a moment to say "hi!" 

I happy to report that budget negotiations are back on track.  I am working very hard to make sure we deliver a budget that lowers our tax burden and protects our most vulnerable citizens.  I believe we are very close to a solution, but it will take some additional time.  I've worked on many budgets and I know we will come to an agreement soon.

While our fiscal year ends today, our state does not shut down if the budget is not signed.  You don't have to worry about services being cut or state offices like the Department of Motor Vehicles closing.  We just continue to operate under the previous budget.

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!

Wisconsin Winning
A recent Marquette Law Poll shows 53% of Wisconsinites say our state is headed in the right direction.  When you look at the data, you can see why.  We've had a remarkable turnaround in our economy, and things are looking up.  Simply put, Wisconsin is winning.
 
As you may know, Wisconsin's unemployment rate has dropped from 9.2% back in 2010 to 3.1% today.  Our unemployment rate is the lowest since October of 1999!  In fact, Wisconsin's unemployment rate for May is tied with Iowa for the lowest in the Midwest and tied for 7th lowest in the nation.  Our labor participation rate is now ranked in the top five in the country!   That's a huge improvement from where we were when Governor Doyle and the Democrats were in charge.   

The good news for Wisconsin doesn't stop there.  Data released by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics shows  unemployment dropped in all 72 counties compared to the same time last year.  Several counties are at all-time lows. Our state's unemployment rate dropped 0.8% from January 2017 to May 2017. That's the  steepest decline for that period since 1983.
 
When you dig a little deeper into our job numbers, there is even more good news.  According to the Associated Builders & Contractors, Wisconsin's construction unemployment last month is the lowest on record for the month of May.  Unemployment in the construction industry is 3.3% - a 1.7% drop from a year ago. 
 
Our construction industry is getting another boost this week.  Swedish mega store, IKEA broke ground on their first store in Wisconsin.  The new store in Oak Creek is expected to bring 500 jobs to the area during construction and 250 when it opens.
 
IKEA isn't the only international company picking Wisconsin.  German candy manufacturer Haribo is building a $242 million plant which will employ about 400 workers right here in our state.  One Haribo executive summed up why they chose Wisconsin, "We are embarking on building one of the largest facilities in the confectionery industry and this location provides ideal conditions to further grow Haribo's successful business in the USA."  Wisconsin is also in the running for another major international company, so keep your fingers crossed!
 
Our rebound is so remarkable, we are getting attention all over the country. May was the third straight month that Wisconsin led the five state Chicago Fed region in economic growth. Wisconsin is now a top ten state for business according to CEO Magazine. (We were #41 in 2010)  In February, U.S. News and World Report ranked Wisconsin 16th on its "Best States" list.
 
Our state is open for business again, and the numbers prove it.

4th of July Celebration Parade Schedules

Grafton - July 1st, begins at 11:00 am, starting at Grafton High School to Centennial Park. Fireworks at dusk at Centennial Park.   More info

Menomonee Falls - July 3rd, 7:00 pm-10:00 pm, starting at  Appleton Ave from Elm Lane to the High School.  Fireworks at dusk at the high school.   More info

Fox Point - July 4th, begins at 9:00 am starting at the  Fox Point Police Department and ending at the Longacre Pavilion.  More info

Bayside - July 4th, begins at 9:00 am,  starting at Bayside Middle School and ending at Ellsworth Park.  More info

Sussex - July 4th, Kiddie parade begins 9:30 am - 10:00 am staring at Main Street and ending at Sussex Village Park. F ireworks at 9:20 pm in Sussex Village Park. More info

Glendale - July 4th,   parade begins at 10:30 am, starting at Parkway Elementary School and ending at the Kletzsch Park Pavilion; fireworks at dusk in Kletzsch Park. More info 

Whitefish Bay - July 4th,  parade begins at 11:30 am, starting at Kent Ave. and Silver Spring Drive and ending at Klode Park. Fireworks at 9:30 pm. More info

Germantown - July 4th,  parade begins at noon, starting in front of the post office and ending in Firemen's Park. Fireworks, 9:00 pm, Firemen's Park. More info

Brown Deer - July 4th, begins at  1:30 pm, starting at Brown Deer Elementary School and ending in Village Park; fireworks at 9:30 pm in Village Park. More info

For events outside the 8th Senate district, click here.

I hope to see you at a parade! Have a safe and happy 4th of July.

Around the 8th...


Richmond School in Sussex visited the Capitol recently.
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Oriole Lane Elementary School also visited the State Capitol

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