Friday, April 23, 2010

Wisconsin Legislative Session Ends

The 2009-2010 Legislative Session is now done.  Here are several updates we bring to your attention:

Assembly Resolution 21 (AR-21) & SR-11 – Introduced 4/8/10 - authorize the Attorney General to file or join a lawsuit challenging the constitutionality of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act otherwise known as Obamacare, the Govt takeover of healthcare (Efforts to give the Attorney General such authorization have failed in the Senate 18-15 and failed in Assembly 51-44)

AJR-123 – Introduced 4/8/10 by Reps. Kessler and Pasch requesting that the Attorney General join in defending Obamacare.  (No action taken – this legislation now dead)

SJR-62 – Healthcare Freedom Amendment – A proposed constitutional amendment to prohibit requiring a person to obtain or maintain health insurance coverage or participate in any health care system or plan (No action taken – this legislation now dead)

AJR-109 & SJR 61 – A constitutional amendment that places major restrictions on the use of partial vetoes by the Governor in appropriations bills, saying if he strikes any part of a section of the bill, he must strike the whole section.  (SJR-61 passed the Senate on April 13th 21-12 vote / SJR-61 passed the Assembly April 20th on a 50-48 vote.  Because this is a proposed constitutional amendment, it will have to be passed again next session by both houses and then forwarded to the voters to be decided by a referendum)

AB-480, AB-481, SB-337 & SB-344 – Expanding hate crimes in Wisconsin to include gender and giving extra penalty enhancers (AB-480 & AB-481 passed Assembly; The Senate took no action, therefore legislation is dead)

SB-460 & AB-653 – Expedited Partner Therapy (The Senate passed SB-460 on a 17- 15 party line.  SB-460 passed the Assembly 51-46.  All Republicans voted in opposition, all Democrats voted in favor except Rep. Ziegalbauer who voted against it)

AB-649 & SB-450 – Global Warming Bill
 (No action taken – this legislation now dead)

AB-751 & SB-549 – Electing President by National Popular Vote
            Surrendering our Electoral Votes to whoever wins the national popular vote (No action taken – this legislation now dead)

AB-440 & SB-115 – Licensing of Dieticians (No action taken – this legislation now dead)

SB-279 & AB 408 – A new ethanol mandate for Wisconsin (original bill 31 pages with multiple amendments.  SB-279 passed Senate 25-8 and was passed by the Assembly 67-31 on April 20th.  The bill now goes to the govern for his signature)

SB-295 – Allow kids to perform in taverns and nightclubs (No action taken – this legislation now dead)

SB-368 & AB-554 – The legalization for marijuana use for medical purposes (On Tuesday, April 20th the author of the legislation, Mark Pocan told his supporters the legislature would not be able to act on this legislation this session – this legislation is now dead)

SB-585 & AB-831 – Prohibits discrimination against an employee who declines to attend an employer-sponsored meeting or to participate in any communication with the employer or his representative in which the primary purpose is to communicate opinions about religious or political matters.  We are told that a Christian bookstore that is not a part of a church would not be exempt from this law. (SB-585 was passed by the Senate on 4/15/10, It was passed by the Assembly on 4/22/10 by a vote of 52- 46)

SB-640 & AB-895 – Change Election laws in Wisconsin – (No action taken – this legislation now dead)

AB-828 Of concern to many comes under a section entitled, “Health Care” (Page 2). In this section it says:
“The bill allows an advanced practice nurse prescriber to examine, diagnose, and treat a minor with a sexually transmitted disease without obtaining the parent’s or guardian’s consent and relieves the advanced practice nurse prescriber from civil liability for not having that consent.”  (Bolded emphasis added)

Amendment 1 was drafted to eliminate this section of the Bill.  (On April 20th AB- 828 was passed including the amendment to strike the offensive language above from the legislation.  AB-828 along with the passed amendment now goes to the Senate. The Senate took no action, therefore the legislation is now dead).

AB-193 – Privilege of Self Defense – (Passed Assembly on April 15th by a vote of 68-29, the Senate did not act, therefore the legislation is now dead)

AB-578 – Requires the Dept. of Health Services to set up rules to specify what cleaning products and equipment can be used in cleaning public buildings and schools including private schools.  The products include restroom cleaners, general purpose cleaners, hand soap, vacuum cleaners and carpet extractors.  (AB-578 was tabled by the Assembly on April 20th, no further action taken, it is now dead)

AB-279 – Registration of Livestock Premises – Current law generally requires a person who keeps livestock to register that location with the Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection.  That person must also provide information about the type of livestock kept and the type of livestock operation being conducted at each location.  The DATCP assign a premise identification code to each location that is registered.  This Bill, AB-279 makes the livestock premises registration program voluntary.  (A Public Hearing on AB-279 is was held Monday, April 19th however no action was taken.  The legislation is now dead.)

High speed rail – the Joint Finance Committee approved spending $810 million of federal stimulus money for high speed rail between Milwaukee and the Madison airport.  The state will need an additional 7.6 million in operating expenses each year to cover the cost of the project (AB-282 for the creation of Regional Transit Authorities – no final action taken, legislation is now dead)

To read any of these bills, follow this link and type the bill number into the designated area: