Lasee's Notes
 April 20, 2017

Lasee's Notes is a way for me to communicate directly with you on key issues of our day
and to champion limited government, lower taxes, and individual liberty.
How we respond to these issues today, will affect the direction of our state and nation tomorrow.

I look forward to hearing from you about the issues of concern to you. Please feel free to contact me, Sen.Lasee@legis.wisconsin.gov or (608) 266-3512. If you are planning to be in Madison, please visit, I look forward to seeing you at the Capitol.

We Need a Law for That?


If I told you that there is a new law in Wisconsin that allows municipal, county, and state governments to hire the best contractors and laborers for government projects, regardless of their affiliations, you’d ask, “We needed a law for that?” Yes, we needed a law to ensure that the best, most qualified people are hired for government construction jobs and people who know all the right people or give money to the right groups aren’t given preferential treatment. Those things shouldn’t matter when we build our schools, village halls, and other government projects.

This past Monday, April 17th at AmeriLux International in De Pere, Governor Walker signed 2017 Wisconsin Act 3 into law.  The new law removes old barriers and allows for free market principles to promote competition and gain the best services at the best price for local and state governments.  The old constraints called Project Labor Agreements (PLA’s) hamstrung government and mandated contractors to replace most of their employees with union members, use only union apprentices, and contribute to union benefit plans even if they offer an existing, sometimes better, benefit plan.  The new law, known as the PLA Neutrality Law, does not ban the use of PLA’s but prohibits PLA’s as a condition of winning or even being considered for a bid.

Recently, Dane County requested bids for a proposed $800,000 restroom project that required a Project Labor Agreement (PLA).  A single bid with the unnecessary project labor agreement provisions included came back at $1.6 million for an $800,000 project.  Requiring the bids to have a project labor agreement DOUBLED the cost of the project! We need to allow more small business bidders, not fence them out.  It’s public officials job to steward taxpayer dollars wisely, not spend them like they’re your rich late uncles.
 


PLA’s drive up the cost of public projects, according to a
report from The Beacon Hill Institute costing taxpayers 12% to 18% more on projects where PLA’s are instituted.  The increased cost translates into an increase of $27-$32.49 per square foot in construction costs.  The PLA Neutrality Law levels the playing field by doing away with the costly and burdensome requirements of project labor agreements and will help create more jobs and job opportunities for small businesses. 

 


Under the new PLA Neutrality Law that I cosponsored and that Governor Walker just signed into law, taxpayer’s will get the most bang for their buck and local non-union businesses won’t be fenced out for political motivations. The best bid from a qualified bidder is the best method and many union business will be okay because they have a lot to offer – they should be confident enough in their craft to not need a government created advantage.


 

On Monday, Governor Walker signed our bill and Wisconsin joined the 21 other states that have banned or enacted substantial reform to government mandated PLA laws. 

It’s laws like 2017 Wisconsin Act 3 that show Wisconsin is truly open for business!  

 

2017-19 State Budget Update

 


The Joint Finance Committee (JFC) is holding their sixth and final public hearing on the
proposed 2017-19 state budget tomorrow, April 21st from 10:00 AM until 5:00 PM at Marinette High School The co-chairs of the Joint Finance Committee
are tentatively planning for the committee to start taking votes on the 2017-19 state budget on May 1st



 
 

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Lasee's Notes, please feel free to contact me.

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State Capitol Room 316S- PO Box 7882, Madison, WI 53708
(608) 266-3512
Email: Sen.Lasee@legis.wisconsin.gov