Let’s urge the Governor’s office to do outreach to the local governments, to help re-set the relationship between local governments and our Wisconsin State Legislature.
In order to have a sustainable Wisconsin, we need to have our own Badger Green New Deal. I think you can Look to the Locals for ideas and visions of what this system might look like. Beyond Medicaid expansion, there’s three components that we need right now.
The first of these is to re-enable Regional Transit Authorities for a statewide system of renewable-energy, regional mass transit. In each County we have Mobility Managers, and they are stressed and strained by lack of funding to try and deliver mobility for our elderly, our poor people, disabled persons and young students and young workers getting their first jobs. All of these folks will benefit from a robust system of regional mass transit.
The second part of a Badger Green New Deal is an Affordable Housing System. Developers have told me that you can’t make money building affordable housing units. That may be true. The market is not the solution to our problem; the market IS the problem, to paraphrase Ronald Reagan correctly. Government is the solution. We need a State-owned bank to make loans to local governments to own/operate their own affordable housing systems locally.
Third component of a Badger Green New Deal is to address our agricultural crisis. Another function of a State-owned bank will be to help prevent further bankruptcies by changing to a more sustainable agriculture. This bank could fund new start-up agricultural ventures based in local communities. Build on the successes of local food movements. Fund local start-ups of smaller-scale, cooperative, regenerative agriculture farms based in organic no-till practices, specialty high-value crops, more biodiversity, small scale locally-owned cooperative food processing ventures, fewer CAFOs and more grazed animal ops.