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a.MKE The List: Republican Presidential Candidates Campaign in WI & MCW's Youth Violence Prevention Initiative: Today’s Top Stories

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Former House Speaker Newt Gingrich is expected to kick off his Wisconsin Presidential Primary Campaign today with a rally at Marquette’s Weaver Auditorium. Gingrich will be on campus around 7:30 tonight. He also has plans to swing through Green Bay tomorrow and on Saturday morning, he is scheduled to appear at the Wisconsin Faith and Freedom Coalition’s Presidential Kickoff at the Country Springs Hotel in Waukesha. Wisconsin’s primary is this Tuesday, April 3rd.

An advisory committee recently approved a proposal to extend Lake Parkway’s I-794, to Highway 100 in Oak Creek.  Right now, Lake Parkway ends just South of Layton Avenue near Mitchell International Airport. Earlier this year, hundreds of residents went to a public hearing hosted by County Supervisor Patricia Jursik. Roughly 70% of comments supported the Lake Parkway extension. Jurisk said that her office will now begin preparing a resolution for the county board to adopt before engineering can begin on the extension.

Six local nonprofit organizations were recently awarded $750,000 by the Medical College of Wisconsin’s Violence Prevention Initiative for a three-year program to teach leadership skills and nonviolence to young people. All six nonprofits are a part of the “Ripple Effect Milwaukee”…which is set to launch in July with plans to work with youth, ages 5 to 18, and families to develop social-emotional health and parenting skills. The six nonprofits have a goal of spreading peace and building community.

The Environmental Protection Agency is setting new power plant standards designed to tackle emissions from fossil fuels linked with global warming. These new rules would essentially bar construction of new coal-fired power plants, like some that recently open here in Wisconsin. New coal plants would have to incorporate technology to capture carbon dioxide from the smokestack and bury it underground. The EPA won’t impose the new regulations on power plants already built, but the rules will go into effect in 2013. EPA officials say the goal is to “reduce pollution in our air, protect the planet for our children and move us into a new era of American energy.”

Vice President Joe Biden is scheduled to appear at a Milwaukee fundraiser today. The lunchtime fundraiser is being organized by the Obama Victory Fund at the Italian Conference Center. Biden’s appearance comes just days before Wisconsin’s April 3rd Republican Presidential Primary. Republican candidates Newt Gingrich, Rick Santorum, Ron Paul and Mitt Romney will all be making stops around the state this week.

Chief Oil Distributing Company is awarding the Guest House of Milwaukee with a $6,500 grant through the BP Fueling Community Program. This grant will help to provide shelter, housing, education and services to Milwaukee’s homeless population. BP’s Fueling Communities Program is all about providing grants to local organizations that focus on health, education, food and housing. The Guest House is celebrating 30 years and will honor this milestone at Miller Park on Tuesday, May 10th.