DECEMBER 9, 2019
By: Representative Treig Pronschinske (R-Mondovi)
Chair, Committee on Consumer Protection
Member, Committees on Aging & Long Term Care | Agriculture | Children & Families | Family Law | Forestry, Parks & Outdoor Recreation | Housing & Real Estate | Rural Development
Have you ever gone to the grocery store and noticed that in the cooler section next to the milk, there are nut based products labeled as milk? This session there has been legislation introduced regarding the labeling of dairy, meat, and milk products. With bipartisan support, these three separate bills are going to be beneficial to our local farmers here in Wisconsin that are seeing declines in production and sales partly due to food products not being labeled properly.

It’s a shame that this issue has not been addressed before now due to the impact that labeling almond, coconut, flax, hemp, oat, rice, and soy based products as a milk product when they contain zero traces of actual milk and do not come from a mammal. These products are essentially just water, sugar, and usually some kind of nut. 

Additionally, there have been ads lately for meatless burgers, but they don’t say that on the menu. They will say things like “impossible burger” instead. This is very misleading and harmful to our meat industry.

Under President Franklin D. Roosevelt, the 1938 Federal Food, Drug, Cosmetic Act was passed that gives the United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA) the authority over labeling of products.

In addition, the correct labeling of meat and dairy products are to protect consumers to ensure that when a product says “meat” or “dairy” that it actually contains what it says that it does. At the expense of consumers and of our farmers, these products are being labeled as something they are not. There is nothing wrong with consumers having choices. But it is important to be honest in what you are buying. An extreme example of this, is the fact that even some hand lotions are being deemed as “milk.”

In regard to the status of these three bills, they have all had a hearing in the Assembly Committee on Agriculture that I sit on. The public weighed in and provided testimony for the bills and a public hearing was held in the Senate Committee on Agriculture, Revenue, and Financial Institutions that is actually taking a vote on the bills on December 18 th at the Capitol.

Please visit to learn more about the current authority of the FDA in labeling food products.
As always, feel free to contact my office with questions, comments, or concerns. 
Facing ongoing reports of nitrates, fecal matter, and other chemicals in groundwater across Wisconsin, politicians and state agencies have been facing mounting pressure to ensure residents' drinking water is safe. Governor Tony Evers declared 2019 the "Year of Clean Drinking Water" out of the gate after his inauguration.

Now, the DNR board is looking to restrict manure and fertilizer usage in areas that are more likely to become contaminated easily, a move that has already been in place in fifteen of Wisconsin's northern counties. Set to meet tomorrow in Madison, the DNR Board will vote on the outline the proposed rule that would end up in the hands of the legislature in months, which along with Governor Evers have been at odds on virtually every issue of substance.

According to the State Journal, seven of the 92 comments submitted by the public are in favor of implementing more stringent manure and fertilizer rules statewide.
Federal investigators who were tasked with looking at how the Wisconsin National Guard handles reports of sexual assault called the Guard's handling "an absolute train wreck."

The months-long investigation was sparked by Governor Tony Evers and U.S. Senator Baldwin after a high profile case involving a whistle blower who alleged the Wisconsin National Guard fosters a "culture of sexual misconduct" in one of its units. The investigator also claimed that the process for prosecuting a soldier accused of sexual assault was a "train wreck."

The report itself will be made public in the coming days by Evers' office, and sweeping changes are being called for by many elected leaders, both Republicans and Democrats.

In a response to the investigator's comments, Wisconsin's Adjutant General, Major General Donald Dunbar, today thanked Governor Evers for the briefing on the situation, and said he and his team "are in the process of reviewing the OCI assessment and are focused on its findings and recommendations."

"We intend to implement all of the recommendations in the report," Dunbar added. "Sexual misconduct has no place in the Wisconsin National Guard."

At the time this article was written, an announcement came from Governor Evers' office, announcing sweeping changes, including an Executive Order to "promptly and fully correct te 22 findings OCI identified in its report and faithfully implement OCI's 22 recommendations"

Additionally, Evers added, "New leadership is also needed to successfully implement these reforms. Earlier today I asked for and accepted Adjutant General Dunbar's resignation."

A future WPT Weekly Insider will include more specific details into the coming changes.
According to the Federal Bureau of Labor Statistics' latest Quarterly Census of Employment and Wages, Wisconsin ranked in the top tier of states in job growth in both numbers of jobs and percent growth across several industries.

Among other statistics, the report shows that Wisconsin led the nation in number of manufacturing jobs added from the end of Quarter 1 2019 through the end of Quarter 2 of this year. Wisconsin ranked 3rd nationally in year over year manufacturing job growth, and ranked 2nd nationally in the number of Education and Health Services jobs added from the end of Q2 2018 and Q2 of this year.

But the latest Marquette-ISM Report on Manufacturing showed that the Milwaukee area's Purchasing Manager's Index, or PMI, was down from October at 42.12 in November. That was the fifth straight month of PMI below 50. "Any reading above 50 suggests the manufacturing sector is growing while readings below that threshold indicate the sector is contracting," according to a report from the Milwaukee Biz Times. Milwaukee's manufacturing sector has declined in six of the last seven months.

Wisconsin companies also exported about 2.3% less in goods in October of this year compared to October of 2018. Total exports totaled $1.86 billion last month. Shipments were down 3.3% in Q3 and 4.5% for the year so far. National exports were down 3.2% in October and 1.2% for the year.
UW-Madison's leader, Chancellor Rebecca Blank said she is looking to revise the policy that dictates the target number of Wisconsin residents it enrolls as freshman to the state's flagship school. In short, Blank would look to increase that number.

Blank will ask the UW Board of Regents this week to approve her plan that would require UW-Madison to enroll 5,200 new in-state undergraduate students. According to the policy, that number would consist of new freshmen, transfer students, and those from Minnesota on the reciprocity program.

The incoming freshmen class this year had 3,797 Wisconsin students, which was the fourth highest level of Wisconsin resident students in the past three decades. The current requirement is 3,600, though the University has self-imposed a 5,200 student target. UW-Madison has also said that without reciprocity between Minnesota and Wisconsin, the university would likely enroll more Wisconsin students.
The state's nine day gun deer hunt did not produce the numbers that the DNR had hoped would be harvested. New data from the state's Department of Natural Resources shows hunters killed 160,769 deer over the nine day season, a decrease of 25% from 2018, when 213,972 deer were harvested.

Officials from the DNR said that the season began late this year, forcing hunters to miss the rut, causing less deer to move around. Thanksgiving, they noted, fell on the latest possible date this year.

In 2018, the DNR sold 577,576 licenses, but sold 564,664 licenses this year.
Governor Tony Evers announced last week that all women's restrooms in state-owned facilities will now have free menstrual products available.

One lawmaker from Madison, Democrat Melissa Sargent, who has pushed for a statewide mandate to the same effect, said this was a step toward equality. She told reporters that the use of the products is stigmatized and "places a financial burden on those who menstruate." Sargent also authored legislation that would exempt such products from the sales tax in Wisconsin- a move that has garnered bipartisan support.

"Menstrual products are necessities, not luxuries," Sargent said, "and no individual should have to be without them when they are in need- especially in our government buildings."

The total cost to install 138 dispensers in state buildings was just under $19,000.
"Too bad," is essentially how the University of Wisconsin Board of Regents responded to criticism from students, lawmakers, and other stakeholders regarding the make-up of the search committee tasked with finding the UW System its new president.

The current composition of the committee consists of everybody you might expect it to consist of, except there are no students or faculty whatsoever include. According to information provided by the La Crosse Tribune, "faculty, graduate assistants, and staff make up 96% of the System's 40,000 member workforce." The current search committee consists of four regents, one student regent, one former regent, two chancellors and a provost.

In a statement through a UW System spokesperson, the search committee Chair said the current make-up consists of "diverse interests and viewpoints of the board, academic leadership, faculty and students."
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What do you think of Senator Marklein's guest column on Treatment Alternatives and Diversions (TAD) funding?
There is a massive need for addiction treatment in Wisconsin.

Lets get our citizens off of drugs. If they don't follow through with active treatment, then incarceration.

We do that in Jefferson County.

This problem is so wide spread, if you or someone you know has not been affected in some way by the opioid epedemic, count yourself blessed. This is a terrible, unfortunate problem our entire society needs to get around if we have any hope to see solutions.

Treatment is probably more important than incarceration

I don't think it should be available to everyone. A case by case analysis of potential success.

Its a good idea but people have to makea major effort they want help and benifit society and be a burden to the the state


Always, we need to invest away recidivism.

You need both. But the real problem is that this is an issue that should be dealt with before it gets to the government. This should be taken care of by schools, social clubs, social groups, churches, etc. This, to me, is a sign that our society is becoming less aware of our neighbors' and their needs and situations than not, and just becoming too self-centered and too "keep to ourselves."

I do believe that the treatment of drug us is important, but only for first time offenders.

treatment is great as long as they can stay off drugs

They both have their place.

Yes. Tax dollars should only be a portion of the funding.

No, I have seen it fail to many times!


treatment is cheaper than incarceration, lets add must be employed as part of treatment at least tax payer gets some return
Governor Evers last week vetoed a bill that would have allowed violent sex offenders to live closer to schools and daycare facilities. After reading the article...
Supportive of the veto, but we do need to figure out a way to reintegrate prior sex offenders into society.

We don't need sex offenders near our schools & daycare. Most of them will become repeaters.

Thank you Governor Evers! I didn't think I'd ever say this!

I finally agreed with something he done

There is an issue with requiring offenders back into the county that they offended in. That could be changed and might help.

For once he's thinking.

Good move.

Well, at least he did one thing right since being elected.
Thanks to a Republican bill signed into law by Gov. Evers, kids may now legally operate a lemonade stand in Wisconsin without the government's permission. What do you think?
a child's lemonade stand is not a threat to existing business and customers of these stands should take there own risks in buying lemonade there.

Don't need all those regulations.

I never had a lemonade stand, let the kids enjoy learning how to run a lemonade stand and earn a little money.

Another good bipartisan move, it must be the season! I really wish I didn't have to point fingers here, but this bill should have never been necessary. It was probably a lawyer or bureaucrat that felt a kid, learning a valuable lesson having a lemonade stand, needs a license or permit because they could be a health hazard! Sometimes people over play their hand because want to be important, sorry that doesn't impress me.

Don't our elected officials have more pressing things to do?

Why is this necessary in the first place?

I didn't know that kids needed a permit. This is a law that needed to be changed so kids can be kids

What a political waste of time. A feel good about nothing issue that could have been handled locally.

Ridiculous the kids needed a permit in the first place. I'm in my 60's and had a lemonade stand every summer. My mom would make the lemonade and give me the cups. I got to keep the money! Guess that makes me a good business person!?!

Good bill, but what about real important work like roads repair, or backing the new jets to Madison, or improvement of Wisconsin schools.

ridiculous that this has to be mandated at all - let kids be kids

I lived in the boonies, not much chance for a lemonade stand to be profitable. I do wonder about the stipulation in the new bill about no egg or meat sales because it could be hazardous food???? I just looked at the ingredients label on a box of Kroger muffins - talk about hazardous food! I think a law should be authored to ban the sale of that stuff. And it is still illegal for me to sell raw milk to my friends and neighbor who are begging me to sell it to them. What a country!

let the kids learn the fundamentals of earning money first.

Wow, a common sense approach. Good move.
Should Wisconsin mandate that (some) public bathrooms in businesses have baby changing tables in men's rooms?
Let the market decide what to do here.

More fathers are taking equal responsibilities in raising their children as women have taken equal responsibilities in working to provide income.

Should be up to the business.

Its good and bad.. I think they should be put in the mens bathrooms , in a stall ( like the womens bathroom)

Does this really have to mandated by the gov't. How many "bathroom police" will this mandate employ? No, quit wasting money with your silly ideas.

When I had small children, no one had a baby changing table available and I survived without one.

I do not agree with making a law. I been in alot of public bathrooms and I seen changing tables

Small businesses have issues to comply with a small bathroom or refitting an existing one. Again, a local issue not from our "leaders" on the State hill.

It's just the right thing to do.

I don't think it should be mandated. However, you could make an incentive for it by making it like a tax credit or write off or something, to encourage more businesses to add it and have a way to offset the cost.

Yes, but once again why a mandate and not just a commen sense recommendation.

that's where unisex bathrooms come into play

It may be helpful to some dad's, but it should not be mandated.

Businesses should be given the opportunity to do so if it makes it a selling point to coming into their establishment. What next? Mandated in bars?

More governement regualtions , more expense.

A few more wouldn't hurt.
This week will mark the 72nd anniversary of the first TV station being established in Wisconsin, WTMJ (now an NBC affiliate in Milwaukee) in 1947. (Source: University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee Libraries). TMJ4 is a very popular station in the Milwaukee media market, and also has a corresponding talk radio station (620 WTMJ). TMJ actually stood for "The Milwaukee Journal" back when the same company owned the newspaper.

What is your favorite or go-to TV station for local news, TV shows, and sports? Do you watch the local news often? Do you still receive a paper? If so, which one?

I'm one of the few people who still receive the Milwaukee Journal delivered to my door 7 days a week. The paper gets thinner and thinner, but I feel it's a duty to support journalism. Without information, without investigations and news, we're all doomed. Democracy dies in darkness, indeed.

Magic 98, Madison and I like the WKOW or WISC new station. I do watch the news often but I only get the Wisconsin State Journal on Sundays. I am not much for more leftist Madison newspapers. The Milwaukee State Journal is a better paper.

We like WTMJ very much, but watch all the channels. My personal favorite is public television.

We get a local daily paper and watch Channels 4 & 6 out of Milwaukee for news.

No newspaper. Watch channel 11 Green Bay.

Channel 58 and 6 for news. We watch in the morning for the news, noon for news and evening at 5:00 for News. Mostly for the weather reports. No newspapers.


Probably NBC-15 out of Madison. We also like Fox-47 at 9 and Channel 3 out of Madison, but we cannot get the CBS and Fox stations out of Madison since they changed their antennas. We do have streaming service as we mostly watch anything SPORTS.

Our local news station is out of Eau Claire or LaCrosse - not really local to the rural areas of Barron and Rusk county. We watch the news a couple times a week and do not get newspapers

No papers, CBS 58 is my go to.

NHK, Europe now, DWD, Nightly News- watch all of them. Janesville Gazette every day.

I no longer watch much TV. If I do, I use Amazon Prime. The TV Stations seem to be full of more and more garbage every day.

ABC news for left wing report, Fox News for right wing report. We all should hear both sides and then come to our own conclusion. We only recieve the Evansville Review and read Janesville Gazette on line.

fox 11

I've always enjoyed WTMJ radio, but that's the extent of my media involvement. Local news shows are so tacky, what with all of the dim pretty people trying to present the news, ha! No newspaper either. I get all my news from the interweb. If it's on the internet it has to be true!

Ch 7&9 FOX news FOX sports Marshfield News Herald Although We always have a finger on the cancel button Too much bias Also get TRG and Hub City Times. Hub City Times by far the best for local happenings


WITI-TV in Milwaukee. Watch the local news everynight. I still receive a newspaper The Racine Journal Times everyday.

wluktv11 I watch the news every day and I read a local paper every day the Sheboygan Press

I prefer WISN 12
No bills to report.
No bills to report.
Memo on LRB-4996 Middleton Girls Golf (Hesselbein) Honoring the Middleton High School girls golf team on its state championship. 
Deadline: Monday, December 9, 5 pm

Memo on LRB-4997 Middleton Boys Cross Country (Hesselbein) Honoring the Middleton High School boys cross country team on its state championship. 
Deadline: Monday, December 9, 5 pm

Memo on LRB-4531 Detention Time Limits (Tittl) Excluding time for evaluation and treatment of certain medical conditions from the time limit for emergency detention without a hearing. 
Deadline: Thursday, December 12, Noon

Memo on LRB-4870 Offender Release Notice (Ohnstad) Notice to the public upon release of a violent offender. 
Deadline: Friday, December 13, 5 pm

Memo on LRB-3848 Weatherization Grants (Neubauer, Greta) Grants to school districts for weatherization projects, granting rule-making authority, and making an appropriation. 
Deadline: Friday, December 13

Memo on LRB-3971 Green Banks (Neubauer, Greta) Requiring a study relating to green banks and making an appropriation. 
Deadline: Friday, December 13

Memo on LRB-4201 Sustainable Practice Grants (Neubauer, Greta) Creating a grant program for farmers who use sustainable practices, granting rule-making authority, and making an appropriation. 
Deadline: Friday, December 13

Memo on LRB-4811 Carbon Social Costs (Neubauer, Greta) Evaluating the social cost of carbon emissions. 
Deadline: Friday, December 13

Memo on LRB-4294 Pollution Notifications (Billings, Jill) Notifying counties of certain water pollution violations, providing an exemption from emergency rule procedures, and granting rule-making authority. 
Deadline: Monday, December 9, 5 pm

Memo on LRB-3848 Weatherization Grants (Neubauer, Greta) Grants to school districts for weatherization projects, granting rule-making authority, and making an appropriation. 
Deadline: Friday, December 13

Memo on LRB-4126 Service Member Credentials (Kapenga, Chris) Reciprocal credentials for service members, former service members, and their spouses and granting rule-making authority. 
Deadline: Friday, December 13

Memo on LRB-3385 Buildings in Floodplain (Marklein, Howard) The regulation of nonconforming buildings in a floodplain. 
Deadline: Monday, December 16, Noon

Memo on LRB-0476 Metallic Mining (Hebl, Gary) The regulation of metallic mining and related activities and making an appropriation. 
Deadline: Wednesday, December 18, 5 pm

Memo on LRB-3739 Health Center Grants (Marklein, Howard) Community health center grants and making an appropriation. 
Deadline: Wednesday, December 18, 5 pm

Memo on LRB-2980 Small Business Info (Vining, Robyn) Online clearinghouse of information for small businesses in Wisconsin. 
Deadline: Thursday, December 19, 4 pm

Memo on LRB-2334 Judgments Recognition Act (Tusler, Ron) Adopting the Uniform Foreign-Country Money Judgments Recognition Act. 
Deadline: Monday, December 16, Noon

Memo on LRB-2333 Fraudulent Transfer Act (Tusler, Ron) Adopting modifications to, and renaming the Uniform Fraudulent Transfer Act. 
Deadline: Monday, December 16, Noon

Memo on LRB-2496 Unsworn Declarations Act (Tusler, Ron) The Uniform Unsworn Declarations Act. 
Deadline: Monday, December 16, Noon

LRB-4619 Levy Limits (Law Revision Committee) Clarifying the method of making certain calculations related to local levy limits.

LRB-1214 Correction Bill (Law Revision Committee) Revising various provisions of the statutes for the purpose of making corrections and reconciling conflicts

LRB-4034  Fox River Commission (Law Revision Committee) The composition of the Southeastern Wisconsin Fox River Commission

Memo on LRB-4818 Tax Exemption (Born, Mark) A sales and use tax exemption for building materials that become a part of a facility for the University of Wisconsin Hospital and Clinics Authority. 
Deadline: Friday, December 13, 5 pm

Memo on LRB-3844 Hours of Service (VanderMeer, Nancy) An exception to federal hours of service requirements and modifying an administrative rule related to the exception. 
Deadline: Thursday, December 19, 4 pm

Memo on LRB-0102 DNR Necklaces (Hebl, Gary) Allowing do-not-resuscitate necklaces or pendants, requiring the exercise of rule-making authority, and providing a penalty. 
Deadline: Thursday, December 19, 5pm

Memo on LRB-4851 EMS Funding (Marklein, Howard) Emergency medical service funding assistance and making an appropriation. 
Deadline: Friday, December 20, Noon

Memo on LRB-4145 Ambulance Staffing (Marklein, Howard) Ambulance staffing and emergency medical personnel. 
Deadline: Friday, December 20, Noon

Memo on LRB-4871 EMS Certification (Marklein, Howard) Certification requirements for emergency medical responders. 
Deadline: Friday, December 20, Noon