Registered yet?

Tomorrow is the last day to register to vote before the spring election.

In this newsletter

Registered yet?
Photo by Hayley Sperling

Good morning, Madison!

I'm here to remind you that tomorrow is the last day to register in person to vote before the spring election.

If you miss the deadline tomorrow, you can still register at your polling place on Election Day (April 4).

How do you know if you need to register? Check your status here.

To register, you'll need proof of residence documents (either a physical or electronic copy will work). Examples include utility bills, bank statements, and paychecks, to name a few. You can check out the full list of accepted documents here.

Happy voting!

— Hayley

Image via Wikimedia Commons

🗳️ A look at the potential impact of the statewide referendums.

  • Three statewide referendums will appear on the ballot April 4, two of which could result in changes to the state’s constitution.
  • In simple terms: The first two questions surround broadening the criteria that judges may use when setting cash bail, before and after a person is convicted of a crime. The third question asks if "able-bodied, childless adults" should have to look for work in order to receive welfare benefits.
  • Will any laws change? The first two questions are constitutional amendments and the result of the vote will have real consequences. The third question is a non-binding referendum, meaning its vote outcome won't change state policies, it’s meant as a means of measuring public opinion.
  • The arguments, in short: Proponents of the cash bail amendments say the proposal will help improve public safety. But opponents say the law change will disproportionately impact low-income people, increase racial disparity in the justice system, and violate the rights of those who haven't yet been proven guilty.
  • Learn more: For a deep dive into the cash bail questions, I highly recommend this WPR explainer.
  • Don’t forget: In addition to the state-wide referendums, there are also county-wide, and municipal referendums on the ballot. You can see what your ballot will look like here.

👨‍🍳 Three Madison chefs are on the short list for the 2023 James Beard Awards.

  • Co-owners of Fairchild restaurant Itaru Nagano and Andrew Kroeger, and Francesco Mangano of Osteria Papavero are in the running for Best Chef Midwest 2023.
  • According to Madison Magazine, the multiple nominations represent "the best finalist showing for Madison chefs/restaurants to date." James Beard Awards are sometimes called the Oscars of the food world.
Mercury Stardust (left) and Jory (right) will stream live online for 30 hours. Photos via Point of Pride

🏳️‍⚧️ A local TikToker is working to raise $1 million for transgender health.

  • Mercury Stardust is a former Madison burlesque dancer but is better known these days as the Trans Handy Ma’am on TikTok. Stardust built up a following of more than 2 million by sharing home improvement and maintenance tips.
  • Starting today at 4 p.m. Stardust and her co-host will go live on TikTok and Instagram for 30 hours straight to raise $1 million for Point of Pride, a nonprofit that supports healthcare access for the trans community.
  • "We believe that this is a really important time to do this work because of the anti-trans laws that have been pushed around in the country and have terrified the trans community," Stardust told The Cap Times. "In a time that often feels like it is hard for us to even exist publicly, it's nice to have a refreshing moment of hope."

🫱🏾‍🫲🏽 Your lunchtime read: Black-inspired, Black-designed and Black-led, the Center for Black Excellence & Culture plans on being a game changer.

  • Via Madison365: "In the heart of Madison’s South Side, the Center for Black Excellence and Culture will be a Black-inspired, Black-designed and Black-led project that will celebrate Black culture. It’s going to be nothing like Madison has ever seen and its founder, Dr. Rev. Alex Gee, believes it will change Wisconsin’s image and reality as it creates a space to grow the next crop of Black thinkers, influencers and leaders."
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🎙️ Today on City Cast Madison

Photo courtesy City of Madison

A Behind-the-Scenes Look at Madison Food Carts

Who doesn’t love a good food cart?! From the massive fresh spring rolls on library mall to the crispy arepas on the capitol square, there are dozens of food carts throughout the city ready to provide a nice hot lunch or tasty snack.

But Madison’s food cart scene doesn’t just happen. There’s a bunch of work behind the scenes to pave the way. Did you know that Madison has an official group of food cart taste testers?!

Meghan Blake-Horst, Madison’s Street Vending Coordinator, explains it all.


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