League of Wisconsin Municipalities
  Capitol Buzz 
September 13, 2016
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Turn out for Transportation on Sept. 29 Event Web Site Created  
The League has joined with the Wisconsin Counties Association and the Wisconsin Towns Association to organize the first-ever statewide transportation town hall event, which is scheduled for the evening of September 29. The purpose of the statewide event is to bring attention to the state's transportation needs and to generate support for solving the transportation funding shortfall. Meetings will occur in nearly all counties in the state and attendees will include county, city, village, and town officials as well as members of the public. 
The Transportation Development Association (TDA) has launched a website that anyone can access to gather information about each event across the state. Information such as the event press release, a listing of locations, and instructions for sharing stories about transportation needs in each corner of Wisconsin are available on this site.
Click here to find your meeting and share your story! 
Assembly Republican Agenda Eyes Transportation Funding but also Preemption of Local Home Rental Regulations
Last week Assembly Republicans unveiled their legislative agenda for the 2017-18 legislative session, dubbed the Forward Agenda . The 30-page document is light on details but reveals Assembly Republicans' plans for introducing legislation on a variety of topics, including transportation funding, education funding, public safety recruitment and retention, tax and regulatory reforms, workforce development, and ensuring that people can rent their homes. The agenda presents a mixed bag for municipalities. It includes:   

  • Tax reform. Assembly Republicans will continue their efforts to simplify the tax code and ensure our tax climate creates incentives for job growth and encourages economic development. This might include removing some sales tax exemptions, reducing tax burdens, and forming a group to work with leading economists to study the makeup of Wisconsin's overall tax structure.
  • Transportation funding. The Assembly GOP will explore different ways to fund state and local roads, including the possibility of toll roads and providing more options for local governments. (We strongly support the Assembly GOP efforts in this regard.)
  • Home rental services. Assembly Republicans want Wisconsinites and tourists to have access to these lodging options and to make sure these services are contributing to our tourism industry in the same manner as traditional hotel and lodging establishments. (This sounds like the Wisconsin Realtor Association led effort last session to preempt municipal regulation of home rentals, which we opposed until amendments were made late in the session. The bill, AB 583, passed the Assembly, but died in the Senate.)
  • Public safety recruitment and retention. Assembly Republicans will consider improving recruitment efforts to help fill these empty positions and retain quality employees. (We support the Assembly's focus on this issue and look forward to working on a solution to the shrinking number of volunteer fire fighters and EMTs in rural areas.
  • PSAPs - 911 funding. Assembly GOP will reform the 911 funding mechanism to ensure local governments are able to update this technology and move toward an upgraded 911 emergency system. (In the past such legislative efforts have focused on making funding available to county PSAPs, but not municipal, unless it's the only PSAP in the county. For that reason the League has opposed such legislation in the past.) 
Click here to read the Forward Agenda