WISCONSIN CATHOLIC CONFERENCE
1. Floor Period Ends for 2021
2. Assembly Passes Workforce Housing Rehabilitation Loans
3. Assembly Passes School Security Funding
4. Assembly Passes Pharmacists Prescribing Contraception
5. Assembly Passes Unborn Protections
6. WCC Supports Medicaid Eligibility Extension
7. WCC Supports Police Reforms
8. Governor Signs Safe Place for Newborns Education
9. Governor Signs Police Training and Employment Reform
10. Governor Signs Marriage License Requirements
11. Senate Passes Abortion Data Collection
12. Upcoming Hearings of Interest
13. New Bills of Interest
Floor Period Ends for 2021
The final 2021 floor period ended on November 11. Committees will continue to hold hearings in the coming weeks but the next floor period is scheduled for January 18–27, 2022. Until then, the Capitol Update will be issued as the need arises.
Assembly Passes Workforce Housing Rehabilitation Loans
On October 26, on a voice vote, the Assembly passed an amended AB-607 (Penterman, William), which authorizes the Wisconsin Housing and Economic Development Authority to make low-interest or no-interest loans for the rehabilitation of workforce housing if the rehabilitation consists of structural improvements or the removal of lead paint. The bill awaits action in the Senate. The WCC registered in support.
Assembly Passes School Security Funding
On October 26, the Assembly unanimously passed SB-449 (Wanggaard, Van), which provides grants to public and private schools so that they can provide critical incident mapping data to law enforcement agencies to enhance school security and assist first responders. The bill awaits action by Governor Evers. The WCC registered in support.
Assembly Passes Pharmacists Prescribing Contraception
On October 27, on a bi-partisan vote of 83-7, the Assembly passed
an amended AB-036 (Kitchens, Joel), which permits pharmacists to prescribe certain contraceptives. The bill awaits action in the Senate. The WCC testified in opposition.
Assembly Passes Unborn Protections
On October 27, on mostly partisan votes, the Assembly passed five bills that previously passed in the Senate and that were described in the prior Capitol Update. All await action by the Governor and are supported by the WCC:
SB-016 (Roth, Roger) Requirements for children born alive following abortion or attempted abortion and providing a penalty. Passed, 55-38.
SB-503 (Stroebel, Duey) Certification of abortion providers under the Medical Assistance program. Passed, 55-38.
SB-591 (Kapenga, Chris) Informed consent regarding a certain abortion-inducing drug regimen and reporting requirements for induced abortions. Passed, 55-39.
SB-592 (Testin, Patrick) Congenital condition educational resources. Passed, 57-37.
SB-593 (Testin) Sex-selective, disability-selective, and other selective abortions and providing a penalty. Passed, 55-39.
WCC Supports Medicaid Eligibility Extension
On October 27, the WCC registered in support of SB-562 (Ballweg, Joan), which requires the Wisconsin Department of Health Services to seek approval from the federal Department of Health and Human Services to extend to 365 days the amount of time that postpartum women can receive Medical Assistance benefits. The current limit is 60 days. The committee took no further action.
WCC Supports Police Reforms
On October 28, the WCC registered in support of the following police reform bills, for which the committee took no further:
SB-470 (Cowles, Rob) / AB-331 (Steineke, Jim) require prospective law enforcement officers to complete a psychological examination prior to employment as a law enforcement officer and granting rule-making authority.
SB-471 (Cowles) / AB-332 (Steineke) require crisis training for law enforcement officers.
SB-472 (Wimberger, Eric) / AB-329 (Steineke) require reporting the use of no-knock entry in the execution of a search warrant.
SB-473 (Roth) / AB-335 (Steineke) provide grants to law enforcement agencies for body cameras.
SB-474 (Roth) / AB-330 (Steineke) require training standards, a certified training program, and a database for school resource officers.
SB-475 (Wanggaard, Van) / AB-333 (Steineke) provide grants to establish and enhance law enforcement and behavioral health services emergency response collaboration programs.
SB-476 (Wanggaard) / AB-334 (Steineke) require drug testing of law enforcement officers involved in certain critical incidents while on duty.
Governor Signs Safe Place for Newborns Education
On November 5, the Governor signed SB-555 (Ballweg) into law as 2021 Wisconsin Act 90, which educates students about how a parent can safely relinquish a newborn to medical staff or police. The WCC registered in support.
Governor Signs Police Training and Employment Reform
On November 5, the Governor signed an amended AB-190 (Tusler, Ron) as 2021 Wisconsin Act 82, which revises the responsibilities of the Law Enforcement Standards Board and requires disclosure of employment files when recruiting former or current officers. The WCC registered in support.
Governor Signs Marriage License Requirements
On November 8, the Governor signed an amended AB-270 (Wittke, Robert) as 2021 Wisconsin Act 84, which makes it easier for citizens and immigrants to obtain a marriage license. The WCC registered in support.
Senate Passes Abortion Data Collection
On November 8, on a partisan vote of 20-12, the Senate passed an amended SB-261 (Jacque, Andre), which requires the State to collect additional information about each abortion, including the visible sex and disability of the aborted child. The bill prevents identification of the mother or abortionist. The bill awaits action in the Assembly. The WCC testified in support.
Upcoming Hearings of Interest
(N.B. Only bills of interest are flagged. In most cases, committees will be considering other bills as well.)
Assembly Family Law, 10:00 am, Wed, Dec 1, 417-N
AB-627 Parental Rights
(Dittrich, Barbara) Terminating parental rights based on the parent's incarceration.
AB-629 Postadoption Agreements (Dittrich, Barbara) Postadoption contact agreements.
AB-631 Safe Haven Law (Dittrich, Barbara) Various changes to the safe haven law.
New Bills of Interest
SB-671 Earned Income Tax Credit (Stroebel, Duey) Allowing certain married individuals to claim the Earned Income Tax Credit. Referred to Senate Financial Institutions & Revenue / AB-692 Penterman, William) Referred to Assembly Ways and Means
SB-675 Abortion Choice (Roys, Kelda) Right to choose an abortion and elimination of certain abortion-related regulations Referred to Senate Health
SB-677 Nitrogen Optimization Pilot (Cowles, Rob) Creating a commercial nitrogen optimization pilot program, providing crop insurance rebates for cover crops, creating a hydrogeologist position, extending the time limit for emergency rule procedures, providing an exemption from emergency rule procedures, granting rule-making authority, and making an appropriation. Referred to Senate Agriculture & Tourism
SB-678 Nitrates (Cowles, Rob) Nitrates under the well compensation program; eligibility for producer-led watershed, lake, and river protection grants; and the annual allocation plan for county conservation grants. Referred to Senate Agriculture & Tourism
SB-679 Suicide Prevention (Jacque, Andre) Law enforcement officer suicide prevention and reporting and making an appropriation. / AB-668 (Cabral-Guevara, Rachael)
SB-686 Postadoption Agreements (Jacque, Andre) Postadoption contact agreements. Referred to Senate Human Services, Children & Families
AB-680 Tax Exemption (Krug, Scott) Sales and use tax exemption for diapers, undergarments for incontinence, tampons, and sanitary napkins. Referred to Assembly Ways and Means
Capitol Update is a periodic e-mail on legislative issues from the Wisconsin Catholic Conference.