1. Joint Finance Committee Action
2. Upcoming Hearings of Interest
3. New Bills of Interest
4. Websites of Interest
Joint Finance Committee Action
In recent action, the Joint Finance Committee (JFC), along a party-line vote of 12 (Republicans) to 4 (Democrats), approved additional funding for public schools and changes the report card system for public, charter, and voucher schools; altered the cap on the statewide voucher program; created a voucher program for students with disabilities; and mandated a civics test to graduate from high school.
By the same margins, the JFC approved Walker's proposals to require drug testing of applicants for certain public benefits, including FoodShare, the state's food stamps program, and to reduce from 60 to 48 months the lifetime limit for individuals who receive Wisconsin Works (W-2) benefits.
The JFC increased the amount of money that the state gives to post-adoption resource centers and provided additional funding for domestic abuse grants. It declined to approve additional funding for an offender re-entry program in Milwaukee.
The JFC was unanimous in supporting Governor Walker's proposal to consolidate several existing mental health programs into a new Community Aids program for mental health services. Also by unanimous vote, the JFC approved additional funding for county mental health crisis services. It rejected the Governor's proposal to change SeniorCare, announcing publicly that the program would remain the same.
The JFC will resume its executive sessions on Wednesday, May 27. On the agenda are budget provisions related to transportation, workforce development, taxation, natural resources, Milwaukee Bucks Arena, and tourism. Once the JFC completes its work on the budget, the Update will provide a more complete review.
Upcoming Hearings of Interest
(N.B. Only bills of interest are flagged. In most cases, committees will be considering other bills as well.)
Assembly Ways and Means, 10 am, Tue, May 26, 225-NW
AB-236 Tax-Exempt Accounts (Macco, John (R)) Tax-exempt accounts for qualified expenses incurred by individuals with disabilities and granting rule-making authority.
New Bills of Interest
AB-218 Abandoned Children (Kleefisch, Joel (R)) Inheritance by a parent who abandons a child. Referred to Assembly Children and Families
AB-221 Medicaid Expansion (Riemer, Daniel (D)) Medicaid expansion and eligibility for BadgerCare Plus and BadgerCare Plus Core. Referred to Assembly Health
AB-222 FoodShare ID (Kremer, Jesse (R)) Photo identification cards for FoodShare recipients. Referred to Assembly Public Benefits Reform
AB-231 Abusive Work Environments (Pope, Sondy (D)) Prohibiting abusive work environments and permitting a person who has been subjected to such an environment to bring a civil action. Referred to Assembly Judiciary
AB-234 School Breakfast Program (Jorgensen, Andy (D)) Payments to schools under the School Breakfast Program. Referred to Assembly Education
AB-236 Tax-Exempt Accounts (Macco, John (R)) Tax-exempt accounts for qualified expenses incurred by individuals with disabilities and granting rule-making authority. Referred to Assembly Ways and Means
SB-165 Tax Exemption Accounts (Marklein, Howard (R)) Tax-exempt accounts for qualified expenses incurred by individuals with disabilities and granting rule-making authority. Referred to Senate Revenue, Financial Institutions and Rural Issues
SB-166 Employment Discrimination (Hansen, Dave (D)) Employment discrimination based on employment status. Referred to Senate Labor and Government Reform
SB-170 Sexual Assault Statute of Limitations (LeMahieu, Devin (R)) Statute of limitations for second-degree or third-degree sexual assault. Referred to Senate Judiciary and Public Safety
SB-174 Medicaid Expansion (Erpenbach, Jon (D)) Medicaid expansion and eligibility for BadgerCare Plus and BadgerCare Plus Core. Referred to Senate Health and Human Services
SB-177 Financial Literacy Education (Marklein, Howard (R)) Incorporating financial literacy in public schools' curriculum and statewide standardized examinations and requiring that it be covered during orientation programs at the University of Wisconsin System and the technical colleges. Referred to Senate Education
SB-179Abortion (Lazich, Mary (R)) Requiring a determination of probable post fertilization age of an unborn child before abortion and prohibiting abortion of an unborn child considered capable of experiencing pain. Referred to Senate Health and Human Services