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Tuesday, July 17, 2012

 11:43 AM 

Miller calls on Republicans to help pass job bills, Fitzgerald predicts GOP return to majority

New Majority Leader Mark Miller today called on Republicans to join Senate Dems in passing bills to put people back to work, complaining the guv's priorities have put Wisconsin at the back of the pack for job creation.

Miller, D-Monona, laid out four proposals: transferring $10 million to a program to train workers for jobs that employers currently can't fill, directing WHEDA to dedicate its efforts to communities with the highest unemployment, accelerating public works projects such as water and sewage upgrades and expand grants to encourage the creation of small business.

"These are the kinds of job creation policies that are noncontroversial and will work," Miller said.

Miller also invited members to join him for dinner tonight as a way to reacquaint themselves and move forward.

Minority Leader Scott Fitzgerald, R-Juneau, also addressed the chamber in his new role, ticking off a list of GOP accomplishments while in the majority and predicting Republicans will again have the majority in the Senate after the fall elections.

Occasionally interrupted by objections from the gallery, Fitzgerald said Republicans fixed a $3.6 billion budget deficit without raising taxes or massive layoffs of public workers, property taxes went down for the first time in 12 years and the state's business ranking is improving.

"I am confident that the voters will recognize this in November," Fitzgerald said, adding he looks forward to working with the minority but also to "capturing the majority again in November."


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