1. WCC Testifies on Right to Work Bill
2. Joint Finance Schedules Public Hearings on State Budget
3. Registration for Catholics at the Capitol, April 8, 2015
4. Upcoming Hearings of Interest
5. New Bills of Interest
6. Websites of Interest
WCC Testifies on Right to Work Bill
This week and last, the WCC testified for information on Senate Bill 44 and its companion bill (Assembly Bill 61), which would create a state right to work law by allowing private-sector employees to refrain from paying union dues. Both the Senate and Assembly have passed the bill, which Governor Walker has announced he will sign on Monday.
Joint Finance Schedules Public Hearings on State Budget
The Joint Committee on Finance, which is charged with the first revision of Governor Walker's budget, will hold four public hearings around the state later this month. Readers are encouraged to attend and make their concerns known. The WCC will provide readers with its budget priorities in the next Update.
Wednesday, March 18 (10:00am- 5:00pm)
Brillion High School
Endries Performing Arts Center
W1101 County Road HR
Brillion, WI 54110
Friday, March 20 (10:00am- 5:00pm)
3400 South 43rd Street
Milwaukee, WI 53234
Monday, March 23 (10:00am- 5:00pm)
University of Wisconsin-Barron County
Fine Arts Theatre
1800 College Drive
Rice Lake, WI 54868
Thursday, March 26 (9:30am to 4:00pm)
Reedsburg High School
CAL Center Auditorium
1100 South Albert Avenue
Reedsburg, WI 53959
Here are some tips on testifying at these hearings:
- Arrive early and complete a registration form, which are available from the legislative pages who staff the hearing.
- Plan on keeping your comments to two or three minutes. Committee members will follow up with questions if they want to know more.
- Give personal or specific examples of why you support or oppose a budget item.
- If possible, have written copies of your testimony for the committee. If you have to leave before you are called to testify, you may leave the written testimony with a page, who will make sure the committee members receive it.
If you can't make these hearings, you will still have several weeks to contact your own legislators to share your views on the budget. And on April 8 you can attend our Catholics at the Capitol event in Madison to learn more about select budget issues and meet your legislators.
Registration: Catholics at the Capitol, April 8, 2015
Registration materials, including a full description of the breakout sessions and online registration via PayPal or VISA/MasterCard, are available on our website.
Upcoming Hearings of Interest
(N.B. Only bills of interest are flagged. In most cases, committees will be considering other bills as well.)
Senate Committee on Education Reform and Government Operations and Assembly Committee on Education, 9:30 am, Tue, March 10, 412-E
SB-067 School Accountability (Farrow, Paul (R)) Pupil assessments, evaluation of educator effectiveness, and school accountability reports.
Assembly Committee on Mental Health Reform, 10 am, Tue, March 10, 328-NW
The Committee will receive testimony from invited speakers in the morning and from the public beginning no earlier than 1:00 pm.
- Laura Riske, Assistant Deputy Secretary, Department of Health Services
- Patrick Cork, Administrator, Division of Mental Health and Substance Abuse Services, Department of Health Services
- Annabelle Potvin, Advocacy Coordinator, NAMI Wisconsin
- Shel Gross, Chair, Wisconsin Council on Mental Health
- William Parke-Sutherland, Executive Director, Chair Grassroots Empowerment Project
- Mary Neubauer, Mental Health Board Member and Co-chair of Task Force, Milwaukee County Mental Health Board and Milwaukee Mental Health Task Force
- Kate Walton, Director of State Government Relations and Physician Advocacy, UnityPoint Health
Assembly Aging and Long-Term Care, 10 am, Wed, March 11, 300-NE
Informational hearing with invited speakers only:
- Laura Riske, Assistant Deputy Secretary, and Brian Shoup, Division Administrator of Long-Term Care, Department of Health Services.
- Heather Bruemmer, Executive Director, Wisconsin Board on Aging and Long-Term Care
- Beth Swedeen, Executive Director, Wisconsin Board for People with Developmental Disabilities.
- Betsy Abramson, Deputy Director, Wisconsin Institute for Healthy Aging
- Cheryl Batterman, Manager, Dane County Area Agency on Aging
- Helen Marks Dicks, Associate State Director State Advocacy, AARP
- Paul Rusk, Executive Director, and Rob Gundermann, Public Policy Director, Alzheimer's & Dementia Alliance of Wisconsin.
- John Sauer, President/CEO, LeadingAge Wisconsin
- Michael S. Pochowski, Wisconsin Assisted Living Association, and Kathy Kilka, President, Residential Services Association of Wisconsin.
New Bills of Interest
SJR-14 Pope Francis (Carpenter, Tim (D)) Commending Pope Francis. Referred to Senate Organization
SB-044 Right to Work (Fitzgerald, Scott (R)) Prohibiting as a condition of employment membership in a labor organization or payments to a labor organization and providing a penalty. Referred to Senate Labor and Government Reform
SB-049 Prevailing Wage (Vukmir, Leah (R)) Elimination of the requirement that laborers, workers, mechanics, and truck drivers employed on the site of a project of public works be paid the prevailing wage. Referred to Senate Labor and Government Reform
SB-067 School Accountability (Farrow, Paul (R)) Pupil assessments, evaluation of educator effectiveness, and school accountability reports. Referred to Senate Education Reform and Government Operations
SB-068 Medical Assistance (Erpenbach, Jon (D)) Premiums and cost-sharing assistance for health plans through the Medical Assistance program. Referred to Senate Health and Human Services
AB-061 Right to Work (Vos, Robin (R)) Prohibiting as a condition of employment membership in a labor organization or payments to a labor organization. Referred to Assembly Labor
AB-067 Death with Dignity (Pope, Sondy (D)) Permitting certain individuals to make requests for medication for the purpose of ending their lives and providing penalties. Referred to Assembly Health
AB-069 Parental Choice (Genrich, Eric (D)) Fraud in parental choice programs. Referred to Assembly Education
AB-078 School Accountability (Kitchens, Joel (R)) Pupil assessments, evaluation of educator effectiveness, and school accountability reports. Referred to Assembly Education