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Governor Signs Several New Laws

The Legislature wrapped up its regular floor period for the year earlier this month and passed several bills through both houses. As a result, Governor Doyle has signed several new laws in the past few weeks. Among the recently enacted laws were the following:13102009 Wisconsin Act 55 strengthens protections against invasive species traveling from one waterway to another by prohibiting vehicles, watercraft, sea planes, or other objects from changing waterways if an invasive animal or plant is attached. These strengthened prohibitions do not apply if only traveling within a single navigable water system.13102009 Wisconsin Act 62 eliminates a loophole in the State’s hit-and-run law that prevented prosecution of hit-and-run offenses on private parking areas. This law is in response to the tragic case of Frances Suitor, who died in 2005 while sleeping in her Oregon, WI home when a drunken driver crashed through her house and killed her. 13102009 Wisconsin Act 64 requires all approved driver education courses to 34acquaint each student with the hazards posed by railroad highway grade crossings and provide at least 30 minutes of instruction in safely dealing with these hazards.3413102009 Wisconsin Act 72 allows law enforcement to collect a fee from a convicted person that law enforcement must transport via ferry to jail after the time of an arrest. This situation arises in island communities in the state where the county jail may not be accessible from the point of arrest via a normal roadway or bridge13102009 Wisconsin Act 76 restricts those convicted of serious criminal offenses from obtaining certification to become a child care provider. Convictions that permanently bar a person from becoming a licensed child care provider include: a felony against a child, felony battery, first or second degree murder or reckless homicide, felony sexual assault, armed burglary or robbery, felony depiction of nudity; and closely related offenses.