Legislative Update

February 2, 2018

One Step Closer...

This week, the Senate Committee on Transportation and Veterans Affairs unanimously voted to pass Assembly Bill 381/Senate Bill 480, a piece of legislation I authored this session which would provide additional financial support to the Wisconsin Law Enforcement Memorial Fund. Wisconsin has numerous specialty license plates that recognize various organizations and are utilized as one way to collect donations for their respective organization. While Wisconsin already has a Law Enforcement Memorial plate, unfortunately the plate does not currently have a donation component attached to it. AB 381 and SB 480 address this issue by bringing this plate in-line with similar specialty plates and enabling it to collect donations to support the fund. The Law Enforcement Memorial Fund is an incredibly deserving organization that focuses its efforts on providing financial assistance to the families of fallen law enforcement officers directly following a line-of-duty death. The Fund also maintains a memorial at our state capitol that permanently recognizes and honors our fallen heroes.  Individuals who have purchased this specialty plate may have thought they were already financially supporting our Law Enforcement Memorial Fund, this legislation ensures that they are and provides needed support to this worthy organization. The full Assembly passed this bill in November. Now that the bill has passed through its Senate committee, we look forward to a vote by the full Senate!

Promoting Independence

By now you've probably heard the exciting news regarding Wisconsin's unemployment rate dropping to a historic low at just 3%. You may have also caught a recent article highlighting that Green Bay's unemployment rate is even lower, at 2.7%, a record low! While achieving a historically low unemployment rate is certainly good news, it also makes it more important than ever that able-bodied individuals on the workforce sidelines are transitioned back into employment in order to enable independence and meet our workforce needs. The Wisconsin Works for Everyone reform, provides some important steps to ensuring that individuals have the appropriate training and resources they need to enter the workforce, while also preventing fraud and abuse and promoting accountability within the system. This comprehensive package of ten bills makes several updates to our welfare system such as: expanding training and employment requirements within the FoodShare employment and training program (FSET), requiring child support compliance for able-bodied parents participating in Medicaid, and adding photo identification to FoodShare cards. This reform package works to ensure that we are removing existing barriers to employment by providing necessary training, treatment, and resources to our able-bodied adults--all key steps to enabling successful independence! If you'd like to check out the public hearing on this package of bills, you can do so here.

Protect Yourself from Tax Identity Theft

As many of us are currently in the process of filing our taxes, I wanted to provide some important information regarding tax identity theft and how you can work to protect your refunds and tax information. Tax identity theft involves scammers using compromised personal information to file returns and fraudulently receive refunds. The Wisconsin Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection (DATCP) recently issued a press release detailing how you can protect your tax identity and what to do in the event that you fall victim to tax identity theft. Please take a few moments to check out the full release here, which may provide you some helpful tips as you proceed with filing your taxes this year and in the future.

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Office of Rep. David Steffen-State Capitol-21 North-Post Office Box 8953-Madison, WI 53708-8953

(608)-266-5840 Toll Free (888) 534-0004 Fax (608) 282-3604    Rep.Steffen@legis.wi.gov

Website: http://legis.wisconsin.gov/assembly/04/steffen/