Wednesday, July 8, 2015

The tough financial decisions faced by Majority Leader Scott Fitzgerald and his state senate colleagues

Photo credit:  Wisconsin State Legislature

As quoted in State Senate finally passes budget, sends it to Assembly.  (Wisconsin State Journal, 7/8/2015)

On the other hand.....

A 4/6/2015 Legislative Fiscal Bureau memo, "Non-Fiscal Policy Items Contained Within the Governor's 2015-17 Budget Bill", lists 47 items "not closely to the state's fiscal programs for the next biennium". 

Stuff that doesn't belong in the budget and should be introduced as separate legislation, in other words.

And then there was the notorious motion #999. which stuffed additional non-fiscal provision in to the budget bill, including but not limited to....
  • Additional Charter School Authorizers
  • Participation in Athletics and Extra-Curricular Activites
  • Teacher Licensure
  • Nonresident Tuition Reimbursement
  • Law Enforcement Officer-Involved Deaths
  • CCAP Definition and Removal of Certain Information from WCCA (Wisconsin Circuit Court Access)
  • General Election Labor Union Recognition Elections
  • Legislation Organization and Powers (including Joint Survey Committee on Retirement System)
  • Definition of Public Records
  • Legislator Disclosure Privilege
  • Legislative Reference Bureau Records and Communications
  • Application of State's Public Records Law to Legislative Records
  • Nonpartisan Legislative Service Agencies' Communications
  • Long-Term Care Waiver
  • Freeze on County-Imposed Fees for Coroner and Transportation Services
  • Septic and Well Pump Installer Electrician License Exemption
  • Local Electrical and Multifamily Sprinkler Code Ordinances
  • Madison Metropolitan Sewerage District
  • Dame Water Level Orders (Vilas County)
  • PSC - Condemnation Authority for Oil Pipeline Companies
  • PSC - Regulation of Alternative Telecommunication Utilities
  • PSC - Definition of External Telecommunications Services
  • PSC - Designation of Chairperson of the Commission
  • Limitation on Town and County Actions (a slap at Dane County)
  • One Day of Rest in Seven
  • Statutory Minimum Wage Requirement ("living wage")
  • Expand Payday Lender Authority
  • Prohibiting Local Government from Imposing Time of Sale Requirements
  • Extension of Water or Sewer Server Between Municipalities
  • Duties and Powers of the County Executive in Populous Counites

Not all of the above items will find their way into the final version of the budget.   The senate, for example, removed the open records restrictions and the change to the Joint Survey Committee on Retirement System.

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