Friday, March 11, 2011

Northern Illinois Tourism Council< Belvidere, Illinois

Although no longer operating—the Northern Illinois Tourism’s financials for FY 2009 were filed in July 2010 and are available.

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The audited financial statements as of 6-30-2009  are available at: 

http://www.illinoisattorneygeneral.gov/charities/search/index.jsp

The proper name of the organization for search purposes is:

NORTHERN ILLINOIS TOURISM COUNCIL

Reg. Number:
01055769

EIN:
363133417

As shown by the balance sheet below, the net worth of the Council was $38K.

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The Council’s Income was basically grants from the State (shown below) apparently with the state’s financial crisis those sources stopped.

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Executive Director Salary—$56,400

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2006 Hyundai Sonata

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Wisconsin Union Bill Is Law, but Debate Is Far From Over - NYTimes.com

Doug La Follette

And there are still obstacles. The law does not take effect until it is published, and Secretary of State Doug La Follette, a Democrat, said he planned on waiting the full 10 days before doing so. “As fast as this was pushed through, as controversial as it has been, I think it’s only prudent,” he said.

Click on the following for more of the story:  Wisconsin Union Bill Is Law, but Debate Is Far From Over - NYTimes.com

The next Wisconsin issue?: April 5th Election

This maybe the next issue which Governor Walker will clash with the Democratic minority.

The following is the view from the left: 

JoAnn Kloppenberg for Wisconsin Supreme Court | culturekitchen

With the Wisconsin Republicans taking away the rights of working class Americans to please their billionaire buddies, there is going to be one hell of a fight in the Wisconsin Supreme Court. From FireDogLake:

If you’ve been following along in my last post, you know the news: the Wisconsin State Senate rushed through and passed a bill that strips collective bargaining rights from most public employees. The vote in the State Senate, entirely composed of Republicans, was 18-1; only moderate Dale Schultz voted no. The budget repair bill was split at the last minute, cleaving the “non-fiscal” anti-union piece from the fiscal components of the bill. The non-fiscal piece did not require a quorum, so the Senate was able to pass it....

• Legal challenges. There are going to be a number of legal challenges to this bill. It will not be implemented right away. There’s the near-term challenge of how the bill got passed tonight. It was done in a way that may have violated open meetings laws, by not allowing 24 hours notice for a public meeting of the conference committee. There are other statutes about collective bargaining that may be brought up in court and fought. And there’s the issue of the bill having a fiscal impact. Scott Walker spent three weeks claiming that collective bargaining was a fiscal issue, and then the legislature just passed the bill as “non-fiscal.” Courts will have to wade through a lot of this, and it’s sure to go up to the state Supreme Court. Which brings us to…

• Supreme Court fight. The matchup between David Prosser (R) and JoAnn Kloppenberg (D) for the state Supreme Court on April 5 just got very interesting. It’s a statewide vote, and the balance of power on the state Supreme Court is at stake. Right now there are 4 Republicans and 3 Democrats on the court, but one of those Republicans is Prosser. Expect lots of organizing and millions of dollars poured into this election, which is much like a political election, with debates and everything. If Democrats win, the legality of what took place tonight may be put in greater question.</BLOCKQUOTE< p>

That's right. An election that very few people were paying attention to has now become MASSIVELY important.

Recall efforts are underway targeting the Wisconsin Republican State Senators who are minions of the Billionaire Koch Brothers.

Efforts are underway to raise money to retake the Wisconsin State Assembly and Senate.

But before these, we need to win on April 5th.

JoAnn Kloppenberg is not accepting contributions. She is running on public financing only. What she needs is PEOPLE. People to knock on doors, pass out flyers...and of course people to VOTE on April 5th.

Here is some background on JoAnne:

Assistant Attorney General Kloppenburg has been a litigator and prosecutor at the Wisconsin Department of Justice since 1989, serving under Attorneys General from both parties: Don Hanaway, Jim Doyle, Peg Lautenschlager and JB Van Hollen.

Her legal experience is broad and deep and includes constitutional law, appellate law, civil litigation, environmental prosecution and administrative law. She has argued numerous cases before the Wisconsin Supreme Court and in the Wisconsin Court of Appeals and she has tried cases in circuit courts around the state.

Assistant Attorney General Kloppenburg graduated with honors from the University of Wisconsin Law School (1988). She has an undergraduate degree from Yale (1974), also with honors, and a Masters in Public Affairs from Princeton University (1976). During Law School, she was an intern for Chief Justice Shirley Abrahamson and later was a law clerk for Chief Judge Barbara Crabb of the United States District Court.

A teacher at the UW Law School since 1990, she was a Peace Corps Volunteer in Botswana (1976-1979) and remains active in professional, civic and community life. She is a member of the Legal Association for Women (LAW), a mentor with the Dane County Bar Association, an English as a Second Language (ESL) tutor, and a member of her neighborhood association board, and has volunteered with various nonprofit groups.

CLICK HERE TO VOLUNTEER

It is CRUCIAL that we win this election. It is our first chance to challenge the pro-Billionaire, anti-working class Republicans since they first started to try and take away workers' rights. Your vote and your time are vital to winning.

 

This is view from the non-partisan League of Women Voters:  http://www.lwvwi.org/VotingElections/2011SupremeCourtVoterGuide.aspx

 
2011 Wisconsin Supreme Court Candidates' Answers Voter Guide
Vote on Tuesday, April 5, 2011
Updated 02/25/2011

ABOUT THIS GUIDE

The League of Women Voters of Wisconsin Education Fund (LWVWIEF) has surveyed the candidates for Wisconsin Supreme Court in the 2011 Wisconsin Spring Elections. This Voters' Guide contains verbatim responses from the candidates, listed in ballot order. Candidates were asked to keep all answers under 100 words but were allowed to run to the end of a reasonable-length full sentence following the 100 word mark. 

Please share this Voters' Guide.  Permission to copy and distribute this Guide is granted provided that no candidate's answers are altered in any way, that equal treatment in the duplication of the responses to any question is afforded all candidates, and that the LWVWIEF is acknowledged.  Please write to the LWVWIEF with any questions concerning this permission.  No portion of this Voters' Guide may be duplicated for campaign purposes.


The League of Women Voters does not endorse individual candidates or political parties.  We encourage citizens to learn about the candidates and issues by accessing print, broadcast, and cablecast media, libraries, websites and by attending debates and forums throughout the election period.  Visit our on-line voter information at www.lwvwi.org.

Wisconsin Supreme Court
The state’s highest court is composed of seven justices and is located in the State Capitol. The Supreme Court may review cases decided in any lower court or may hear original actions. The Supreme Court has administrative and regulatory authority over the courts and the practice of law in the state. The justice who has served the longest continuous term serves as chief justice unless he or she declines the position.  Wisconsin Supreme Court Justices are elected in statewide non-partisan April elections to a 10 year term beginning August 1. In the event of a vacancy, the governor may appoint a justice until an election can be held. A justice must have been a licensed attorney in Wisconsin for the five years preceding election to judicial office.  Judicial candidates may not be members of political parties and may not make promises or commitments on any case, controversy or issue that may come before them if elected.  Once in office, a justice may not hold or campaign for any non-judicial public office during the term for which he/she was elected, even if he/she resigns from judicial office.  According to the Wisconsin Blue Book 2009-2010, the salary for a Supreme Court Justice is $144,495 and for the Supreme Court Chief Justice is $152,495.

Questions posed to the candidates:  (NOTE: questions were asked in January, prior to the Primary Election.)

1.      What educational, professional, civic and community experiences have you had that you believe qualify you for this elective office?

2.      Describe in lay terms the duties of a Wisconsin Supreme Court Justice. What types of cases are heard by the court?

3.      What procedural or legislative changes might improve the operations of the court?

4.      How will you as a Supreme Court Justice advocate for the independence of the courts?

 

The Candidates

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JoAnne F. Kloppenburg
Kloppenburg for Wisconsin Supreme Court, P.O. Box 5464, Madison, WI  53705
(608) 231-3859; Website: www.kloppenburgforjustice.com; Email: campaign@kloppenburgforjustice.com

1.      I’ve been a litigator and prosecutor at Wisconsin’s Department of Justice since 1989, serving under Attorneys General from both parties.  My legal experience includes constitutional, appellate, civil litigation, environmental prosecution, administrative and some criminal law. I’ve argued numerous cases in circuit courts, the Wisconsin Supreme Court and Wisconsin Court of Appeals.  I graduated with honors from UW Law School (1988), Yale (BA 1974), Princeton (MA 1976). I was a law clerk for Chief Judge Barbara Crabb, and interned for Chief Justice Shirley Abrahamson. I’ve taught at the UW Law School since 1990 and volunteered in many legal and community venues

2.      The Wisconsin Supreme Court is an appellate court with the power to determine what appeals it hears from any court in Wisconsin. It can also take “original actions,” cases that have not started in lower courts.  The Court takes about 100 of the thousands of cases that begin in Wisconsin courts each year. About 75% of the cases are civil; about 25% are criminal.  Supreme Court Justices decide the most important legal disputes and set rules for state courts and lawyers.  It is critical that Wisconsin residents are confident that Justices are independent, impartial decision-makers, unaligned with special interests.

3.     It is imperative Wisconsin residents have confidence in the Courts as impartial and independent. That is why public financing for Supreme Court candidates who limit fundraising and spending is so important. The effect of the law on people’s lives is profound and powerful. American democracy is built upon our willingness to accept the decisions courts reach as lawful, whether we agree with those decisions or not.  The huge spending, the attack ads and partisan-style tactics in Supreme Court campaigns undermine the confidence our residents must have in courts and justices whose power and responsibility are so great.

4.      The judicial, legislative and executive branches of government are co-equal. There must be checks and balances for democracy to work. This election offers votes a very clear choice when it comes to independence. My opponent has said he has “the most partisan background” of any current Justice. His campaign said that re-electing him would protect “the conservative judicial majority” on the Court which would then be a “complement” to the new Republican governor and legislature. It is wrong for Judges to pre-judge cases based on political ideology. I will decide cases on the law and the facts.

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David T. Prosser, Jr.
Prosser for Supreme Court, 709 Milwaukee Street, Suite C, Delafield, WI 53018

(262) 646-3073; Website: www.justiceprosser.com; Email: info@justiceprosser.com

Note: Response received after deadline – might not be included in print editions of this guide.

1.      My 12 years as a Supreme Court Justice are my most obvious qualification. I have written 132 majority opinions and participated in 900 published decisions. Eighteen former state bar presidents and many judges have endorsed me based on my performance. No other candidate has judicial experience.  In addition, I have worked at all levels of government and in all three branches of government: law teacher (UW, IUPUI); staff attorney, Office of Criminal Justice; administrative assistant to Congressman; elected district attorney; 18 years in Wisconsin State Assembly; Assembly Speaker; Tax Appeals Commissioner; Uniform Laws Commissioner. This breadth of experience is unprecedented.
 

2.      Most cases begin in circuit court where a judge or jury hears factual evidence and makes a decision. The losing party may appeal, pointing to some error in procedure or deficiency in the applicable law and asking for a different result or chance to start over. The Supreme Court is the highest appellate court in Wisconsin. It hears important civil and criminal appeals on legal issues that will affect many people beyond the immediate litigants. It also makes rules affecting courts and the practice of law, supervises and disciplines attorneys and judges, and works to obtain funding for the judiciary.

3.      The Supreme Court hears and decides many controversial issues. The members of the court have strong views. Disagreements among justices have always existed, are inevitable, and not inappropriate. What is essential, however, is that disagreements are handled with collegiality and mutual respect that recognizes the constitutional role of the chief justice and the role of other justices, and encourages all justices to participate and contribute to the betterment of the whole. Public squabbling demeans the court. To assure that the court achieves its maximum potential, we should seek an objective evaluation by neutral, impartial observers and experts.

4.      Supreme Court Justices should decide cases based on the facts and the law. They should not sit as ideologues and attempt to politicize the judiciary to advance a particular point of view. Justices who act with consistent impartiality are seldom subject to outside pressure. I have never felt outside pressure to decide a case. The Supreme Court serves as a check on abuses and excesses by other branches and “interests.” Judicial independence assures that the court is able to perform this vital function, irrespective of who controls the other branches or how powerful the “interests” might be.

Japan Orders Evacuation Near 2nd Nuclear Plant - NYTimes.com

 

Some 45,000 people were affected by the evacuation order at the Daiichi plant, where those living within a six-mile radius were told to leave. The evacuation of the second plant was smaller in scope, but was still likely to affect thousands of people at a time when local authorities were struggling to grapple with the damage from the quake.

Click on the following for more details:  Japan Orders Evacuation Near 2nd Nuclear Plant - NYTimes.com

Did Wisconsin Republicans need to attack collective bargaining? - CSMonitor.com

 

Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker said he needed to rein in collective bargaining in order to secure key long-term budget savings. Is he right? Here are the arguments pro and con.

Chick on the following for the article:  Did Wisconsin Republicans need to attack collective bargaining? - CSMonitor.com

Scientists say Japan quake shows US nuclear risk - Yahoo! Finance

, scientists said they needed to do more to ensure that future quakes don't risk the kind of reactor impact that Japan is now grappling with.

8.9 earthquake that rocked Japan on Friday knocked out power to the backup cooling systems of a reactor in Fukushima prefecture, north of Tokyo, forcing the evacuation of thousands of residents.

Nuclear plants need power to keep water flowing over the fuel rods to prevent overheating.

Scientists say Japan quake shows US nuclear risk - Yahoo! Finance