This means that thousands of people working under contracts with the City of Milwaukee, the City of Madison or Dane County could suddenly see their pay drop by thousands of dollars. The Teapublicans tried to say they were doing this because it would ruin the local economies and drive businesses away, while ignoring the fact that these laws have been in effect for over fifteen years. They also had to ignore the fact that the Madison area has the lowest level of unemployment in the state and has the best local economy.
During the testimony regarding the bill, one of the sponsors, State Representative Chris Kapenga (T-Delafield), gave this unbelievable statement in regard to the urban poverty plaguing Milwaukee:
"I'm a little unique because, yes, I represent Delafield but I am very familiar with Milwaukee because I employ Milwaukee residents and I drive through Milwaukee every single day."
That is a very peculiar statement to make. Not only is it rather ignorant and offensive, it also just doesn't make any sense.
A quick check of Google maps shows that he would have to go way out of his way to drive through Milwaukee on his way from Delafield to Madison:
Further investigation shows that he is also the primary stock holder for his company, Integrated Time Systems, which is based in Brookfield. Well, that's closer to Milwaukee, but still doesn't explain why he would drive through Milwaukee every day.
Digging deeper, we start seeing things that starts to make sense of this.
Kapenga's LinkedIn account shows that he is a member of the the Metro Milwaukee Chamber of Commerce.
That must be it. He goes into Milwaukee to pick up his graft from them as well as his "gifts" from Abele and the other members of the plutocracy that will benefit from his hard work to keep so many people under the level of poverty. As we all know, less money in the pockets of the workers, even if it is just to the level of poverty, means more money in the pockets of the plutocrats.
Oh, and Abele who denied lobbying for the killing of the living wage laws, even though the proof shows he was indeed lobbying for it, has now said that he is going to veto the Milwaukee County resolution:
The measure called for an $11.32 county minimum wage that would apply to county workers and employees of some county vendors. Most of those affected would be the 2,400 low-wage personal care attendants indirectly paid through the county's Family Care program.Translated into English, this means that Abele is more concerned about the bottom line than he is about the person taking care of your grandmother or your disabled son making a wage even with the poverty line. He would rather have all these people make sub-poverty wages. Also keep in mind that this would include the caretakers of the chronically mentally ill people he is evicting from the mental health complex.
"What I'm vetoing is a $5 million extra expense to Family Care," Abele said. County Comptroller Scott Manske has estimated the measure would eat up nearly $5 million of a Family Care reserve fund this year and further increase county costs in the future.
Backers of the plan say workers deserve the higher wage as a means to be self-supporting. The $11.32 figure is the federal poverty line for a family of four.
That shows just how much disdain he has for the working poor as well as the people that are dependent on these services. He is more worried about the profits of the profiteers than he is about the caretakers or the people they are taking care of.
All of this leads to the question of the day: Who's got the better view of the urban poverty in Milwaukee- Chris Kapenga from his drive throughs of Milwaukee or Chris Abele from atop his ivory tower?