Capitol Update

October 10, 2017Like us on Facebook

Contents Include:
1.  WCC Urges Action on New Heal Without Harm Bills
2.  USCCB Statement on Immigration Principles and Need to Protect Dreamers
3.  Upcoming Hearings of Interest
4.  New Bills of Interest
5.  Websites of Interest
WCC Urges Action on New Heal Without Harm Bills
The Senate last week introduced three bills related to fetal tissue research:  the Heal Without Harm (HWH) Initiative - Senate Bill 423 (Sen. Terry Moulton, R-Chippewa Falls) and Senate Bill 424 (Sen. Terry Moulton, R-Chippewa Falls)  - as well as  Senate Bill 422 (Sen. Alberta Darling, R-River Hills).
On Wednesday, October 11, Senate Republicans will be gathering in caucus to discuss these three bills, only two of which, SB 423 and SB 424, promote ethical research, protect the unborn, and are supported by Wisconsin's major pro-life groups, including the Wisconsin Catholic Conference.
Please call your Senator ASAP and ask him/her the following:
  • Support SB 423 and SB 424 to promote research that is ethical, innovative, and effective.
  • Give the public the opportunity to discuss the HWH Initiative at a public hearing.
  • Do NOT support SB 422 (or its Assembly companion, AB 83) since it does not end the trade of baby body parts and is not supported by a single pro-life group.
Don't know your State Senator?  Go to legis.wisconsin.gov and type in your home address under "Find My Legislators" or call the Legislative Hotline: 1-800-362-9472.  After you call your Senator, contact  the HWH Coalition with any feedback you received.  The HWH Initiative will soon be introduced in the Assembly and we urge that you make similar calls in support of this legislation with your Representative as well.  Questions? Take some time to visit the  HWH Q&A to learn more about this critical issue.

USCCB Statement on Immigration Principles and Need to Protect Dreamers
On Sunday  evening, the White House released Immigration Principles and Policies that are a proposed list of priorities to be considered when working on legislative protection for Dreamers. Bishop Joe S. Vásquez of Austin, Texas, Chairman of the Committee on Migration, issued the following statement urging Congress to "ensure true protection for Dreamers once and for all."
Full statement follows:
"The Administration's Immigration Principles and Policies do not provide the way forward for comprehensive immigration reform rooted in respect for human life and dignity, and for the security of our citizens. They are not reflective of our country's immigrant past, and they attack the most vulnerable, notably unaccompanied children and many others who flee persecution. Most unfortunately, the principles fail to recognize that the family is the fundamental building block of our immigration system, our society, and our Church.
"Since July, Congress has introduced legislative solutions for Dreamers, including the Dream Act. The Administration should focus attention on ensuring that a legislative solution for Dreamers is found as soon as possible. Every day that passes without that solution, these youth experience growing apprehension for their futures and their families. Each passing day brings us all a step closer to March 2018, when DACA recipients will begin to lose legal work privileges, and far worse, face the threat of deportation and family separation.
"For this reason, we exhort Congress to take up legislation and move forward promptly to ensure true protection for Dreamers once and for all. Together with so many others of good will, we shall continue to offer welcome and support to these remarkable young people, and we shall not stop advocating for their permanent protection and eventual citizenship."

Upcoming Hearings of Interest
(N.B. Only bills of interest are flagged.  In most cases, committees will be considering other bills as well.)
Assembly Children and Families,  11:30 am , Wed, Oct 4, 415-NW
AB-186  Prosecuting Prostitutes Under 18  (Billings, Jill) Prosecuting a person under the age of 18 with committing an act of prostitution.
AB-481   Family Treatment Court  (Rodriguez, Jessie) Creating family treatment court and juvenile treatment court grant programs in the Department of Children and Families.
Speaker's Task Force on Foster Care,  10 am Wed, Oct 11 , Centennial Hall of the Milwaukee Public Library, The Loos Room,  733 N. Eighth St, Milwaukee.
Testimony will be accepted from invited speakers and the general public on matters relating to the foster care system.  The hearing will end at 3:30 pm.
Senate Labor and Regulatory Reform, 9:30 am, Thu, Oct 12, 412-E
SB-275  Prohibiting Sanctuary Cities (Nass, Stephen) Prohibiting local ordinances, resolutions, and policies that prohibit the enforcement of federal or state law relating to illegal aliens or immigration status, authorizing certain elective officeholders to commence an enforcement action, providing a reduction in shared revenue payments, and creating governmental liability for damages caused by illegal aliens. 
The public hearing will conclude when no speakers remain, but not later than 6:00pm.  In the event that speakers remain, their registrations for speaking for or against the legislation will be changed to registering for or against.
Assembly Science and Technology, 10 am, Thu, Oct 12, 400-NE
Informational hearing on biomanufacturing in Wisconsin and testimony only from the following invited speakers :
  • Lisa Johnson, CEO, BioForward
  • Dr. Bill Murphy, Professor, Biomedical Engineering & Orthopedics, Co-Director, Stem Cell and Regenerative Medicine Center
  • Matt Jennings, President, Phillips-Medicine-Molex
  • Erika Long, Senior Director Government Affairs, Mallinckrodt-Stratatech
  • Todd Asmuth, President or Greg Peifer, CEO, Shine Medical Technologies
  • Dr. David Gamm, Founder & President, Opsis Therapeutics
Senate Judiciary and Public Safety and Assembly Corrections, 1:30 pm, Tue, Oct 17, 412-E
Informational hearing on the Criminal Justice Coordinating Council and testimony only from the Council's invited members :
  • Secretary Jon E. Litscher, Department of Corrections
  • Kelli Thompson, State Public Defender
  • David O'Leary, Rock County District Attorney
  • Gary King, Eau Claire County District Attorney
  • Kelly McKnight, Ashland County District Attorney
  • Paul Farrow, Waukesha County Executive
  • Chief Anna Ruzinski, Menominee Falls Police Department
  • Chief David Moore, Janesville Police Department
  • Judge Jeffrey Kremers, Milwaukee County Circuit Court
  • Tiana Glenna, Eau Claire County Criminal Justice Manager
  • Constance Kostelac, PhD, Director, Bureau of Justice Information and Analysis, Department of Justice
  • Matt Raymer, Justice Programs Supervisor, Department of Justice
New Bills of Interest
SB-422  Fetal Body Parts (Darling, Alberta) Sale of and research on fetal body parts, final disposition of fetal body parts, cord blood banks, and providing a penalty. Referred to Senate Judiciary and Public Safety
SB-423  Fetal Body Parts Disposition (Moulton, Terry) Use and final disposition of fetal body parts and providing a penalty. Referred to Senate Judiciary and Public Safety
SB-424  Stillbirth Certificate of Birth (Moulton, Terry) Certificate of birth resulting in stillbirth, disposition of remains after miscarriage or stillbirth, anatomical gifts, and providing a penalty. Referred to Senate Judiciary and Public Safety

AB-521  Divorce Waiting Period (Duchow, Cindi) Waiting period for marriage after divorce judgment.  Referred to Assembly Family Law
AB-525  Solitary Confinement (Crowley, David) A study on alternatives to the solitary confinement of inmates. Referred to Assembly Corrections

Websites of Interest
WisconsinEye - Independent, nonpartisan news service that provides uncut video coverage of state government proceedings, as well as interviews with lawmakers and policy experts.
To find out who your legislators are, go to the Wisconsin State Legislature's home page  and type your address in the top right hand corner under "Find My Legislators."

Capitol Update is a periodic e-mail on legislative issues from the Wisconsin Catholic Conference.
Wisconsin Catholic Conference
131 W. Wilson St., Suite 1105
Madison, WI 53703