Editor’s note: The weekly “Thumbs Up-Thumbs Down” editorial offers opinions on highs and lows in the news during the past week. Thumbs up: The cities of Eau Claire and Altoona made prudent moves this week to ask Eau Claire County to put the brakes on a proposal to implement a $30 annual vehicle registration fee to fix county roads. The county on Tuesday is scheduled to discuss the wheel tax plan that could raise an estimated $2.39 million a year to repair deteriorating roads.
There is no mistaking the political bent of One Wisconsin Now. After all, the organization stopped in Eau Claire on Tuesday as part of the “Scott Walker Farewell Tour.” The Madison-based progressive organization visited to tout its “Tomorrow Wisconsin” plan. At the core of the effort are five key issues: student loan debt refinancing, paid family and medical leave and sick days, affordable child care, job security and livable wages, and access to the state pension
For several reasons, the Eau Claire County Board should put the brakes on a proposal to impose a wheel tax of up to $30 on each vehicle under 8,000 pounds kept in the county. The board is scheduled to take up the matter when it meets on Tuesday, July 17. First, the proposed $30 fee that would be added the $75 state registration fee is regressive, charging each car owner the same regardless of income or whether they drive 5,000 miles or 40,000 miles a year. Second, it’s an unfair subsidy
Editor’s note: The weekly “Thumbs Up-Thumbs Down” editorial offers opinions on highs and lows in the news during the past week. Thumbs up: The name UW-Eau Claire — Barron County may take a little getting used to, but the merger of campuses in Eau Claire and Rice Lake seems like the best solution to a difficult situation. The former UW-Barron County, like many two-year colleges, saw its enrollment in a free fall with the real possibility of closure on the horizon.
News: A recent government report said Medicare will become insolvent in eight years and Social Security will do the same in 16 years if nothing is done. Views: It’s hard to think of too many things more important for the president and Congress to focus on than stabilizing the future of these two essential programs. But because the solutions won’t come easy or without some sacrifice by most of us, our “leaders” simply keep whistling past the graveyard. We all should be
Steve Farina considered professional opportunities in Illinois, New York and California after graduating from UW-Eau Claire in 2006. Instead, he stayed in Wisconsin and now owns three businesses. He’s also one of nine people featured in a national marketing campaign aimed at keeping workers in the state or drawing them back from elsewhere. “I’m a huge advocate of everything that is available to us right here in the state,” Farina told the Leader-Telegram’s Eric
Editor’s note: The weekly “Thumbs Up-Thumbs Down” editorial offers opinions on highs and lows in the news during the past week. Thumbs up: Max Bergen’s Purple Heart apparently was worth the wait. More than 70 years after the Chippewa Falls man’s plane was shot down over Germany and held captive by the Nazis for 14 months, Bergen was awarded the prestigious military honor on Friday. Bergen, 94, a resident of the Wisconsin Veterans Home, was wounded when the plane
On Monday, the Supreme Court ruled in Gill v. Whitford that the plaintiffs in a Wisconsin case that claimed Republican redistricting maps were unconstitutional did not have “standing to sue.” The case involves claims that the GOP in 2011 drew legislative districts too much in its favor. In both 2012 and 2016, Republicans won more state Legislature seats than their percentage of the popular vote would suggest. The High Court also sent a gerrymandering case in Maryland favoring
The Eau Claire City Council may effectively have four different presidents over a span of about two years. Longtime leader Kerry Kincaid resigned from the post Tuesday. Andrew Werthmann, council vice president, at least temporarily took over her duties, and a new president will be appointed in a few weeks to fill out Kincaid’s term. The seat will then be on the April 2020 ballot for a full, three-year term. As a result of Kincaid’s resignation and four incumbents being voted out
Editor’s note: The weekly “Thumbs Up-Thumbs Down” editorial offers opinions on highs and lows in the news during the past week. Thumbs up: Some distance runners train for years to qualify for the Boston Marathon, reaching the necessary time by the narrowest of margins. Jordan Bergeman of Chippewa Falls is no exception, qualifying at last month’s Eau Claire Marathon by a little more than a minute. What is exceptional is that he did it while pushing his 11-year-old, 65-