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Feb 6, 201310:04 AMBlaska's Bring It!

with David Blaska

Dane County human services chief: Homeless winter camp ‘is not safe’

Dane County human services chief: Homeless winter camp ‘is not safe’

(page 1 of 2)

Lynn Green, the hardworking administrator of Dane County’s Human Services Department, tells your faithful bloggeur that Brenda Konkel’s winter camping at Token Creek County Park is unsafe. She says those “Occupy Madison” campers have made their own misery by refusing to play by the rules. Further, they disproportionately drain existing resources from other needy people.

Sheriff Mahoney, do your duty. When their camping permit expires on Feb. 17, roust them out. I posed these questions to Ms. Green and reprint her answers, received last evening, verbatim:

Q. Are the efforts of Brenda Konkel and the Occupy Madison movement helping the homeless people now encamped at Token Creek County Park? They contend that these folks have no place else to go. True or not? 

A. Efforts to help the homeless should focus on providing safe, dry, warm shelter with supports that help secure long-term, permanent housing solutions. In the absence of traditional housing most, if not all, can go to the overnight shelters. The shelters will accept as many people as possible on days when the temperature dips below 20 degrees regardless of whether people have reached their limit on the number of days they can be served. A few people are banned due to extreme behaviors that cannot be handled at the shelters and that can be very disruptive to all others who need shelter. I honestly don’t know if any of the campers are among these few. 

Q. How many are out there now?

A. There seems to be a core of campers of about 17. It can vary up to 20 or 30 on any given day. 

Q. Are these folks indeed doing job searches?

A. I honestly do not know the answer to this. 

Lynn Green

Q. Anything else you care to add?

A. The Dane County sheltering system is keeping hundreds of men, women and children safe every night. The Salvation Army, Porchlight, area churches, Children’s Service Society of Southern Wisconsin, DAIS [Domestic Abuse Intervention Services], and all of our partners have gone above and beyond the call to provide a safe environment for those in need. The Dane Center is serving an average of 125 each day and 150 or more on severe winter days. We need to remember the good that is being done for so many and not just focus on a few people who refuse help. By demanding special treatment they are consuming a disproportionate amount of resources. 

Camping in Wisconsin is not the answer. It is not safe and it doesn’t help move people into permanent housing solutions.


See my cri du coeur in Tuesday’s blogge, “Please stop ‘helping’ the homeless occupiers.” Why hasn’t the mainstream news media done an exposé of Brenda Konkel’s failed experiment?

And then there was one

Let me understand this: The Madison School District paid a headhunting firm to find a new superintendent and somehow board members are unaware of one of the two finalists’ history?

“Attempts by GOP to extend mining permitting timeline not good enough for Dems,” reports The Capital Times.

Folks, nothing will be good enough for the Democrats except a de facto mining moratorium. Well, at least the Republicans tried to compromise, despite the reporter’s heavy editorialization.

Quote of the day comes from renaissance man Ben Stein: “Fathom the hypocrisy of a government that requires citizens to prove they are insured but not everyone must prove they are a citizen?” (H/T: Cousin Johan)

Old to new | New to old
Feb 6, 2013 05:40 pm
 Posted by  Anonymous

How The Mining Bill Sacrifices Wisconsin Waters
Attorney Dennis Grzezinski explains in detail how the mining bill disregards and harms Wisconsin waters:
Municipalities and homeowners with wells could lose their drinking water supplies if a mining company draws down the groundwater sources in their approved mining operation.
According to the proposed mining bill, the DNR must permit an iron mining company to locate as many high-capacity wells wherever it wants to supply as much water as it needs for its mining and processing and related activities. With only one exception, DNR would have no authority or power to prevent the mining company from drying up lakes, rivers, streams, ponds, springs, wetlands or wells, so long as the company was willing to take steps to improve groundwater anywhere else in the state. The only exception is that DNR would be required to include conditions to protect “privately owned high-capacity” wells (i.e., private businesses) from mining company drawdown of water (or the mining company must pay them out), but would not have any power to protect municipal water sources or private residential wells. This screams for a headline, or more letters to the editor.)
So you would be out of luck if your individual well runs dry or your municipal water runs out. The DNR would be required to allow this drawdown, if the mining company wants it, once the law takes effect and a mine is permitted.
The proposed mining bill does away with any limits on polluting ground water deeper than 1000 feet, even if water supply aquifers would be at risk if such pollution occurred underneath the mine.Monitoring of that deep groundwater also would not be required. Not only does this eliminate state regulatory safeguards for drinking water, but the absence of information regarding the pollution source could make it much harder years or decades later for those whose water supplies have been contaminated to prove...

Feb 7, 2013 06:48 am
 Posted by  David Blaska

No one is going to lose their drinking water, anonymous! A perfect example of opposition at any cost!

The bill does not change any air quality standards (NR 404), water quality standards (NR 102) or groundwater/ drinking water quality standards (NR 140). Each environmental permit the DNR considers under the bill would be measured against the exact same public health-based standards that are on the books today. The bill prohibits the DNR from issuing a permit to impact any navigable water body unless the proposed activity will not have a significant impact on (1) water quality; (2) public rights; (3) riparian rights; or (4) the flow capacity of a stream.

In addition, the bill authorizes the DNR to require that any impact be mitigated by increasing public access to up to 1.5 acres for each acre of navigable waterway impacted where necessary to meet the four conditions above – a requirement that does not exist under current law.The bill prohibits mining waste from being sited within 1,200 feet of a well used for drinking water purposes, and must monitor compliance with groundwater standards to a depth of 1,000 feet into the bedrock. Very few wells are dug deeper. Furthermore, the acquifers in northern Wisconsin are much closer to the surface than that, as this paper from the DNR explains:

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About This Blog

Raised on a farm near Sun Prairie, David Blaska is a recovering liberal who spent 18 years in daily newspapers, including 12 at The Capital Times in Madison as a reporter and editor. He served Gov. Tommy Thompson as acting press secretary in 1998 and is a veteran and survivor of 19 years in state government. He served 12 years on the Dane County Board of Supervisors. From December 2007 to November 2011 he wrote the consistently popular "Blaska's Blog" for Isthmus online's "The Daily Page" until, he says, the intolerant liberals ran him off. He blogs from Madison.

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