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Thursday, July 31, 2014 |  Madison, WI: 82.0° F  Mostly Cloudy
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Fundraising donations, personal cash flow into Wisconsin congressional campaigns

This Modern World, the biting satirical cartoon by the pseudonymous Tom Tomorrow, recently proposed streamlining the American political process. "Take elections," mused the strip's narrator. "They're such an inefficient way to purchase a government! That's why we'll be replacing them with eBay auctions! Simple and straightforward -- highest bidder wins! You probably won't even notice the difference." >More
 Madison task force recommends removal and chemical treatments to fight emerald ash borer

While neither the insect nor its larvae have been detected in Dane County, Karl van Lith, a member of Madison's EAB task force, says it's likely they're here. The task force has preemptively made four recommendations in an attempt to mitigate the impact of EAB, according the task force's June report. >More
 Madison landlords say they won't provide tenants voter registration forms despite proposed city mandate

Some Madison landlords are criticizing a proposed ordinance that would require property owners to provide new tenants with voter registration forms. With 12 co-sponsors, the ordinance is expected to pass when the Common Council votes on the measure at Tuesday's meeting. >More
 New Madison Public Library director Greg Mickells got his start converting card catalogs into a database

Greg Mickells will take the reins of the Madison Public Library at the beginning of September. Under the terms of his five-year contract, expected to be approved by the Common Council, the new director will make $115,000 a year. Isthmus called Mickells in Lincoln, Nebraska, where he currently works as the assistant library director for Lincoln City Libraries, to learn about what he likes to read and what he thinks is next for libraries. >More
 Feingold says he would have lost to Walker in recall election

Former U.S. Senator Russ Feingold broke a lot of progressive hearts when he declined to run in the recall election against Gov. Scott Walker. But even if he had, he says now, the outcome would have been the same. "I wouldn't have won either," he said Wednesday, to gasps from the audience at a talk organized by the Interfaith Coalition for Worker Justice of South Central Wisconsin. >More
 Trees are thirsty too

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 Redistricting forces shifts among Dane County Dems running for the Assembly

The new district boundaries recently drawn by Republican lawmakers have generated a brisk game of musical chairs among area Democrats who want to stay in the state Assembly. State Rep. Chris Taylor, for instance, who took over Joe Parisi's seat when he left to run for Dane County executive, no longer lives in what is now District 48, so she is running in District 76. >More
 Citizens pressure Madison Water Utility on well safety

On a warm night in mid-June, a small group of citizens are gathered at a city streets division building for an update on rising levels of the contaminant PCE in Well 15, which supplies much of Madison's east side. They are members of a citizen advisory panel that meets to provide public input on issues affecting Madison's water quality. >More
 Peril in the crosswalk! It's open season on pedestrians in Madison

The Wisconsin law is very specific: "Drivers must yield to pedestrians when crossing a sidewalk or entering an alley or driveway." But on a recent Thursday afternoon at the intersection of Monroe and Harrison streets, pedestrians attempted to cross Monroe 30 times in a half-hour, and 37 motorists did not slow down or stop for them. Nine of the people on foot held one of those little red flags or waved at oncoming cars, and 17 vehicles, including one Madison Metro bus, did not yield for them either. >More
 New Overture Center management nails fundraising goal

Last August, Overture Center spokesman Robert Chappell boldly predicted that the nonprofit organization due to take over the arts facility would have little trouble meeting its first year, $2.36 million fundraising goal. Mayor Paul Soglin, on the other hand, famously predicted that Overture in its new incarnation would "crash and burn." >More
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