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Madison — Today Governor Walker signed legislation creating an individual income tax check off for the Special Olympics in Wisconsin.

“The legislation we signed today will give the Special Olympics another avenue to raise funds for their important work,” said Governor Walker.  “I want to thank Senator Galloway and Representative Nygren for seeing this bipartisan bill through legislature.”

According to SOWI President & CEO, Dennis Alldridge, the income tax check-off bill will help to generate funds that will allow Special Olympics Wisconsin—an organization which provides sports and training competitions to 10,000 individuals with cognitive disabilities—to grow and enhance its services.

“Today is an historic moment for Special Olympics Wisconsin,” said Alldridge. “The income tax check-off bill signed by Governor Walker will allow us to expand our programs to the thousands of individuals in Wisconsin with cognitive disabilities.”

Programs that will benefit from these funds include Healthy Athletes™—a service which reinforces with athletes the importance of developing a healthy lifestyle and integrating healthy choices into a daily routine—as well as family support, youth activation, advocacy and sports programs.

“In Special Olympics we transform lives together through the joy of sport every day,” said Alldridge. “This tax check-off will allow every citizen in the state to share in this joy.”

Amy Verheyden, the parent of Special Olympics Wisconsin athlete, David Thompson, has witnessed how becoming involved in the organization made a positive impact on her son’s life. She is thrilled that more individuals will now be able to share in the benefits the organization has to offer.

“[Before he began Special Olympics], David was very shy and didn’t have many social skills. [Now] he has transformed into a whole new kid. Passing the income tax check-off bill means more funds for an organization that has made an incredible difference in David’s life. It will allow more athletes to grow, mature, and meet others who are in their shoes.”