Thursday, September 20th

State

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A $50 million renovation planned for the American Family Insurance Amphitheater will soon begin with raising the roof and rebuilding the dressing rooms.(Photo: Mike De Sisti/Milwaukee Journal Sentinel)Buy Photo

They're poised to tear down the dressing rooms and raise the roof at Summerfest's American Family Insurance Amphitheater.

During Thursday's board meeting, Milwaukee World Festival, which runs the Big Gig, approved spending up to $50 million on the long-planned renovation project.

"This project is going forward," said Don Smiley, Summerfest's top executive. "We couldn't be more excited about it."

Summerfest officials said they will soon release renderings for the project.

Smiley told the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel that the project will "begin in weeks" with demolition of the artist dressing rooms and preparation for raising the roof.

RELATED: Eppstein Uhen Architects will redesign Summerfest's American Family Insurance Amphitheater

RELATED: Summerfest to build new amphitheater sponsored by American Family

Smiley said the renovation will be done in two phases.

Gov. Scott Walker and State Superintendent Tony Evers(Photo: Scott Walker and Tony Evers campaign)

Republicans are doubling down on their criticism of Democratic gubernatorial candidate Tony Evers for not being more aggressive in stripping problem teachers of their licenses. 

This time, the state GOP is going after the state schools superintendent over a Green Bay middle school teacher named Steven Crowley, who was involved in a physical altercation with a student in 2012. 

Relying on the findings of one of the district's assistant superintendents, Gov. Scott Walker's allies say that Crowley, then an English-as-a second-language teacher at Franklin Middle School, engaged in an "unprovoked physical altercation" with a student who was in a hallway while classes were in session. 

"The fact that Tony Evers wouldn't revoke the license of a teacher who physically harmed a terrified student as she begged for help is further proof that he can't be trusted to do the right thing," said Alec Zimmerman, spokesman for the state Republican Party.

Gov. Scott Walker and State Superintendent Tony Evers(Photo: Scott Walker and Tony Evers campaign)

Republicans are doubling down on their criticism of Democratic gubernatorial candidate Tony Evers for not being more aggressive in stripping problem teachers of their licenses. 

This time, the state GOP is going after the state schools superintendent over a Green Bay middle school teacher named Steven Crowley, who was involved in a physical altercation with a student in 2012. 

Relying on the findings of one of the district's assistant superintendents, Gov. Scott Walker's allies say that Crowley, then an English-as-a second-language teacher at Franklin Middle School, engaged in an "unprovoked physical altercation" with a student who was in a hallway while classes were in session. 

"The fact that Tony Evers wouldn't revoke the license of a teacher who physically harmed a terrified student as she begged for help is further proof that he can't be trusted to do the right thing," said Alec Zimmerman, spokesman for the state Republican Party.

WUWM and the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel are collaborating on an effort to keep voters informed for the November elections.(Photo: WUWM)

Election day is more than six weeks away, but one thing is almost assured: the war of attack ads will continue to heat up.

And that’s where we start our Informed Voter series — a collaboration between WUWM (89.7) and the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel to answer questions texted to us from potential Wisconsin voters.

This biweekly series, called Informed Voter: Wisconsin's Midterm Elections, is an opportunity for you to connect with our reporters to have your election-related questions answered.

Leading up to election day, Informed Voter will air every other Wednesday on WUWM's "Lake Effect."

This week, the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel's Molly Beck joins WUWM's Mitch Teich to discuss the proliferation of ads this election season and to answer listeners' and readers' questions about the races and how to sort out the messages.

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University of Wisconsin-Madison's Bascom Hall.(Photo: Mark Hoffman, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel)Buy Photo

A federal judge has ordered the state and its insurers to cover transgender employees'  transition surgeries.

U.S. District Judge William Conley concluded that there was no legally valid reason to exclude medically necessary care for the workers and called some of the state’s arguments “unhinged from reality.”  

The plaintiffs, a University of Wisconsin-Madison graduate student, Alina Boyden, and Shannon Andrews, a researcher at UW School of Medicine, sued in the spring of 2017 after they were denied treatment their doctors had determined was a necessary part of the gender transitions. They were represented by the ACLU of Wisconsin and lawyers from Hawks Quindel law firm.

“I feel vindicated that the court recognized what the state did was wrong," Andrews said in news release from the ACLU. 

"I hope that this will be a powerful signal that trans people are not fair game for discrimination and that our lives and health are not a political football.