Marti Mikkelson

News Reporter

Marti, a Waukesha native, joined the WUWM news team in February of 1999. Previously, she was an anchor and reporter at WTMJ in Milwaukee, WIBA in Madison, and WLIP in Kenosha.

Marti’s work has been recognized by RTNDA, the Wisconsin Broadcasters Association, the Northwest Broadcast News Association, Associated Press, Public Radio News Directors Incorporated, and the Milwaukee Press Club.

Marti earned a bachelor’s degree in Mass Communications from the University of Wisconsin-LaCrosse. Marti currently lives on her favorite side of town – Milwaukee’s east side.

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Marti Mikkelson

Campuses across the UW System are implanting massive cuts. Each university released documents this week outlining its plans. The cuts are in response to the $250 million cut Republicans made to the UW System in the state’s two-year budget.

Students are hearing that they may face larger class sizes, fewer course offerings and a longer time to complete a degree.

Susan Bence

    

The subject of mining is back before the public in Wisconsin. Hundreds of people across the state are expected to testify Monday night at the annual Conservation Congress hearings. They’ll weigh-in on dozens of issues related to how the state manages its natural resources. One item on the agenda is Wisconsin’s divisive new iron mining law.

Milwaukee County Executive Chris Abele has won another four-year term. He defeated state Sen. Chris Larson in Tuesday’s election by a margin of 56 to 44 percent.

More than 100 Chris Abele supporters packed into a tiny room at Ugly’s Lounge in downtown Milwaukee. The County Executive took the podium shortly before 10 pm to chants of “four more years.” He called the victory “incredibly humbling.”

    

America’s political eyes remain riveted on Wisconsin. It’s the only state that will hold a presidential primary on Tuesday – so the five presidential candidates have been barnstorming nearly every region to sway voter momentum.

The climax will arrive with Tuesday’s vote. Then, we may begin to learn whether Wisconsin will make a difference.

The past week has been packed with candidates appearances. Democrat Hillary Clinton held one of the first in Wisconsin - a rally on Milwaukee’s north side. Republican Donald Trump drew a crowd in Janesville.

Marti Mikkelson

Milwaukee residents will begin to see signs around town discouraging them from giving money to panhandlers.  City leaders rolled out the program on Wednesday, called Keep the Change. It’s designed to channel money toward organizations that can help address the underlying problems.

S Bence

On Tuesday, Secretary Hillary Clinton met with Milwaukee residents all too familiar with the tragedy of gun violence.

The town hall meeting took place at Tabernacle Community Baptist Church, a congregation made up largely of African Americans - a demographic some say Clinton must win in order to become the next president.

The church is located in 53206, an area plagued by poverty and crime and struggling to help its high rate of black men who have served time in prison.

Scott Olson/Getty Images

Wisconsin's Democratic Congressional delegation called on Gov. Walker Tuesday to reverse his decision and accept a federal food stamp waiver, saying it would restore aid to thousands of people.  

In a letter to the governor, Sen. Tammy Baldwin and U.S. Reps. Gwen Moore, Ron Kind and Mark Pocan said low income residents shouldn't be required to have jobs in order to receive food aid if they can't find work in an economic downturn.

Mark Wilson/Getty Images

Gov. Walker says he'll decide next week,  a week before Wisconsin's April 5 presidential primaries, whether he'll publicly endorse one of the Republican candidates.  

Walker said in Milwaukee Tuesday that his political ideology is more in line with that of Ohio Gov. John Kasich or Texas Sen. Ted Cruz, but stopped short of revealing whether he has ruled out an endorsement of Donald Trump.

Marti Mikkelson

    

There was a steady line at the Ziedler Municipal Building in downtown Milwaukee on Monday, as early voting got underway for the April 5 election.

Voters will decide several races. They include for state Supreme Court, Milwaukee County executive and Milwaukee mayor.  Wisconsinites will also pick candidates in the state’s presidential primaries.

We stopped by the polling place to ask early voters what’s on their mind this election season.

Michelle Maternowski

Workers at the Milwaukee County courthouse are preparing for a new tenant: the Office of African American Affairs. It’s designed to help sectors of the black community address issues they face, including unemployment and mass incarceration.

WisPolitics.com

Former Democratic state Rep. Tamara Grigsby of Milwaukee has died of health complications at age 41. Grigsby dealt with cancer during her time in the Assembly, stepping down in 2013 after serving for eight years.

Grigsby later became the community outreach coordinator for Dane County Executive Joe Parisi and was recently appointed director of the county’s new Department of Equity and Inclusion.

Parisi announced her death on Tuesday, and described Grigsby as a “special human being” whose sole motivation was to make a difference in the lives of others.

Althouse

    

A marathon session is in store Tuesday for the GOP-controlled state Senate. Lawmakers are scheduled to dispense with more than 100 bills before they adjourn for the years.

The Senate will vote on a measure that would have an impact on Milwaukee, making it tougher for cities to force lenders to sell zombie homes, or abandoned properties slated for foreclosure.

Milwaukee Public Library

Milwaukee was ground zero for the industrial boom of the late 19th century. Hundreds of machine shops were operating in the heart of the city; many of their inventions helped grow the companies into worldwide enterprises. Yet today, Wisconsin ranks toward the bottom for entrepreneurship while the business community works to improve the numbers.

“This was kind of the Silicon Valley of the late 1800s," local historian John Gurda says.

Bob Bach

Wisconsin made history five years ago when Gov. Scott Walker signed Act 10 into law. It stripped most public unions of collective bargaining rights and sparked massive protests at the State Capitol. We examine whether the law accomplished its stated mission to save taxpayer money, and perhaps an unstated goal – to weaken the political power of unions.

Gov. Walker unveiled Act 10 in February of 2011. He said Wisconsin needed to end its tradition of collective bargaining with most public workers.

    

President Obama will visit Milwaukee Thursday to celebrate the city’s victory in the Healthy Communities Challenge.

The White House unveiled the challenge in November. Cities competed to sign up the greatest number of residents for the Affordable Care Act during the open enrollment period. Milwaukee generated the most impressive numbers, yet concerns persist.

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