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WRA Media Contact:

Tracy Kosbau
Vice President of Marketing and Public Relations
tkosbau@wirestaurant.org

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Lobby Day photo
(l-r): John Degnitz, Eileen Rieder, Norm Eckstaedt, Steven Schilling, Trey Hester, Rep. Chris Kagenga (R-Delafield), Scott Morrical, Tom Saxe, Martha Eckstaedt and Julie Hester
Lobby Day photo
Governor Scott Walker addressing the group at Monona Terrace
Lobby Day photo
(l-r): Assembly Majority Leader Scott Suder (R-Abbotsford) and Senate Minority Leader Chris Larson (D-Milwaukee)
Lobby Day Wrap-Up
Members asked lawmakers for tax and regulation relief

On April 10th, WRA members from across the state traveled to Madison for meetings with the lawmakers who represent them. It was WRA’s annual Restaurant Lobby Day, and they were there to advocate for our industry on issues that are critical to your bottom line.

“It’s two weeks later, and those Restaurant Lobby Day visits are already paying dividends,” said Ed Lump, WRA President and CEO. “There is strength in numbers, so when restaurant owners join forces and go up to the Capitol with a common purpose, lawmakers listen.”

WRA members lobbied for Unemployment Insurance reforms, tourism promotion funding and small business tax relief, and against local regulation of nutritional values, portion sizes and menu labeling.

“These issues are already looking up,” Lump said. “Unemployment reforms are moving forward and a tax reform package that contains significant tax relief for small businesses is going to be included in the state budget bill.”

While the Capitol office visits are the main focus of Restaurant Lobby Day, some of the high points came during the lunch and program at the Monona Terrace Convention Center. Governor Scott Walker addressed the group, shook hands with attendees and had a brief meeting with WRA leaders to discuss the state of the foodservice industry and the public policy issues that are important to us.

Attendees were also treated to a debate between Assembly Majority Leader Scott Suder (R-Abbotsford) and Senate Minority Leader Chris Larson (D-Milwaukee) on WRA’s key issues. Finally, members were briefed by WRA Vice President of Public Affairs Pete Hanson on key issues affecting our industry, so they were prepared to talk with legislators and staff.

After office visits in the Capitol, members ended the day with a happy-hour gathering hosted by the Great Dane Brewing Co., in Madison. According to WRA Board Chairman Charlie Gray, “We shared stories about our meetings in the Capitol and some good camaraderie. It was a great way to end the day.”

If you have questions or comments about Lobby Day or the issues we're working on, please contact the WRA Government Relations Team at 800-589-3211.

 
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Wisconsin Restaurant Association • 2801 Fish Hatchery Rd. • Madison, WI 53713 • Tel: 608.270.9950 • Toll Free: 800.589.3211 • FAX: 608.270.9960