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Wisconsin Legislative Spotlight

Maintained by the Wisconsin Legislative Reference Bureau (LRB), this page provides an overview of recent and upcoming activities in the Wisconsin Legislature. The LRB revises its content weekly. Links to more detailed information are highlighted in the text.

The Week of February 27, 2012

The most recent legislative floorperiod began on February 14 and concluded on February 23. The final general-business floorperiod for the 2011 legislative session is scheduled for March 6 to 15.

Stay Updated

The Legislature has RSS feeds for both recently introduced legislation and recent session activity. You can also view a listing of recently introduced bills. Our Facebook page also has links to recently introduced bills.

Mining Bill

The Assembly passed Assembly Bill 426, relating to the regulation of ferrous metallic mining and related activities, on January 26, by a vote of 59-36 (2 paired). An Assembly Substitute Amendment was adopted by a vote of 59-37. The bill was referred to the Senate Select Committee on Mining Jobs, but withdrawn from that committee on February 15 and rereferred to the Joint Committee on Finance, pursuant to Senate Rule 46 (2)(c). A public hearing on the bill was held by the Joint Committee on Finance on February 17.

Wetlands Bill

The Senate passed Senate Bill 368, relating to permits for discharges into wetlands, wetland mitigation, and wetland mapping and delineation, on February 15, by a vote of 17-15. The Assembly Committee on Rules made the bill a special order of business on February 21 pursuant to Assembly Resolution 21, and passed the bill on that day. It has now returned to the Senate and been concurred in, so it is ready to be delivered to the governor for signature.

Committee Activity

For details of upcoming committee meetings, see the Schedule of Committee Activities.

Signed Into Law

As of February 24, 115 acts have been signed into law during the 2011-12 legislative session and they can be found under the acts section of the Legislative Documents site.

Bills awaiting action by the governor can be found under the enrolled bills section of the Legislative Documents site.

Redistricting Plan Challenged

On February 21, a panel of three federal judges began proceedings in a federal case to challenge the congressional redistricting plan. New congressional districts are established by state legislatures following the U.S. Census every 10 years, and this year two groups in Wisconsin filed suit in federal court to prevent the proposed plan from being implemented. The federal panel began hearing testimony on February 23. More information on redistricting is available from the Government Accountability Board.

Recall Petitions

The Government Accountability Board (GAB) is currently reviewing petitions for the following offices: Governor Scott Walker, Lieutenant Governor Rebecca Kleefisch, Senator Scott Fitzgerald, Senator Van Wanggaard, Senator Terry Moulton, and Senator Pam Galloway. For more information on recalls, including estimated numbers of signatures and images of the petitions, see the GAB recall information Web site.

Candidates Selected for Presidential Primary

On January 3, Wisconsin’s Presidential Primary Selection Committee selected seven Republicans and one Democrat to appear as candidates in the Presidential Primary vote on April 3, 2012. The Republican candidates on the primary ballot will be Michele Bachmann, Newt Gingrich, Jon Huntsman, Ron Paul, Rick Perry, Mitt Romney, and Rick Santorum. The Democratic candidate will be Barack Obama.

2011-2012 Blue Book

The 2011-2012 Wisconsin Blue Book is available online. It may be ordered from the Department of Administration, Document Sales Unit (search Document Sales Catalog for "Wisconsin Blue Book"), (608) 266-3358. The price is $10.30 with shipping and $7.30 without. State Legislators are provided with complimentary copies to give to their constituents. You may contact your state senator or representative to ask about receiving one.

The Legislative Reference Bureau issued two study guides for the 2011-2012 Wisconsin Blue Book. Study Guide to the 2011-2012 Blue Book is geared toward high school students. Inside the 2011-2012 Wisconsin Blue Book is geared toward elementary school students.

Recent Publications

For more information about Legislative Service Agency publications, see the left panel of the Spotlight index page.

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Last revised: November 19, 2012