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Wis. agency seeking $478K for Gov. mansion kitchen remodel

Published On: Dec 07 2012 09:20:32 PM CST   Updated On: Dec 08 2012 03:30:52 PM CST

The Wisconsin Department of Administration is asking the State Building Commission for $478,700 in general fund-supported borrowing for kitchen renovations at the Governor's Mansion.

The request for the revamp of both the first-floor kitchen and the second-floor private quarters kitchenette originally came from the Governor's wife, Tonette Walker.

The first lady and members of the nonprofit Wisconsin Executive Residence Foundation, or WERF, first pitched the idea of kitchen renovations to the State Capital and Executive Residence Board in September 2011.

The DOA request said the improvements are needed because the main-floor kitchen has not been renovated since 1986 and is used to prepare food for more than 15,000 visitors annually.

In a news release Saturday, Tonette Walker said she plans to work with WERF to raising money to contribute toward the project

"We want to be able to provide the best experience possible for all [the Executive Residence] visitors," the Governor's wife said in the release. "I am fully committed to working with the foundation to raise the majority of the funds for this project and limit the impact on our state's taxpayers."

However, an estimate of how much of the total project cost WERF will work to raise is not included.

Walker and his family do not use the Executive Residence as their primary residence. The Walkers live at their family home in Wauwatosa.

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