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Federal spending in Wisconsin declines

Published On: Dec 11 2012 06:53:35 AM CST
MILWAUKEE -

Federal spending in Wisconsin is declining, mainly due to reduced military needs.

Preliminary figures from the Wisconsin Procurement Institute show federal contract awards for the fiscal year ending Sept. 30 declined about 52 percent to $3.4 billion compared to last year. The figures could be adjusted upward because of routine delays in federal reporting of contract awards.

As the U.S. winds down the war in Afghanistan, the military's needs are changing.  Spending by the Army in Wisconsin is down more than 75 percent.  The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel says the Army was the biggest buyer of Wisconsin goods and services, with roughly more than $1 billion in purchases in fiscal 2012.

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    MADISON, Wis.--A west Madison store is part of an effort to collect hundreds of stuffed animals to donate to six police departments in Southern Wisconsin.

    Todd Merryfield, owner of The Learning Shop at 714 S. Gammon Road, said the store is collecting the bears for officers who use them to help comfort children with whom police come in contact.

    "This is a great way to support what (police) do," Merryfield said. "Those are the kids that need something like this to reassure them, calm them down, and let them know that things are all right."

    Nearly 500 plush animals were donated Tuesday, a Learning Shop spokeswoman said. The Madison store's effort is part of a larger initiative through the Bears for Humanity organization. 

    Photos by Doug Wahl

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