Testify on School Funding!

Please consider testifying or submitting written testimony at the series of upcoming Joint Finance Committee hearings. The 16-member bi-partisan Joint Finance Committee (Madison legislators Mark Miller and Mark Pocan are members) is the primary legislative committee responsible for appropriations and expenditures. They are the ones who take the Governor’s budget and make changes, then submit it to the Legislature.

Scheduled hearings are:

* Tuesday, March 20, 2007 from 10:30 am to 4:30 pm at the UW-Milwaukee
Student Union,Wisconsin Room, 2200 E. Kenwood Blvd., Milwaukee.
* Wednesday, March 21, 2007 from 10:00 am to 4:00 pm at the Arlington
Agricultural Research Station Public Events Facility, N695 Hopkins Rd.,
* Tuesday, March 27, 2007 from Noon to 5:00 pm at the Chippewa Falls
County Courthouse, Assembly Room, 711 N. Bridge St., Chippewa Falls.
* Wednesday, April 4, 2007 from Noon to 5:00 pm at the Prairie du Chien
High School Auditorium, 800 E. Crawford St., Prairie du Chien.
* Wednesday, April 11, 2007 from Noon to 5:00 pm at the Nicolet College
Learning Resource Center Theatre, 5634 College Dr., Rhinelander.
* Thursday, April 12, 2007 from 10:00 am to 4:00 pm at the National
Railroad Museum Lenfestey Center, 2285 South Broadway, Green Bay.

Tips for testifying:

 Don’t just talk about problems: say what you want. In this situation, that the Legislature keep its promise of two-thirds funding for public education in Wisconsin.
 Arrive 15-20 minutes early if you can to register.
 If you bring your children, alert staff. They MIGHT bump you up in line.
 Prepare to wait several hours or more to testify. This is NOT a fair process: oftentimes lobbyists and “friends” of legislators get to go first.
 Bring enough copies of your testimony to give to each member and leave with staff.
 Make eye contact, smile and try to converse, rather than just reading.
 Tell at least one personal story (short) about how school funding shortages have impacted your children or better yet, your community.
 Keep testimony to a single type-written page (about 3 minutes: they’ll cut you off).
 If you can’t stay to testify, leave a copy of your comments with your name, address and phone with staff there.
 Consider registering as a panel (that way you all get to come up together and testify).
 Try to get other schools and families across the state to testify. Efforts are most effective when the legislators hear from people at EVERY SINGLE HEARING.

If you can’t get to a hearing, send testimony to Joint Finance Members:

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Filed under AMPS, School Finance, Take Action

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