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Weekly E-Update

Dear Neighbor,

Welcome to my latest e-update. Here is a summary from the past week as your State Representative. 

As always, previous updates are available on our website and social media. 

Please contact my office with any questions or concerns.

Forward together,

Robyn Vining    

Personal Property Tax Repeal Bill

On Wednesday, I introduced a bill along with State Senator Brad Pfaff, and Representatives Beth Meyers, Katrina Shankland, and Nick Milroy, to repeal the personal property tax in Wisconsin. 

The goal of eliminating the personal property tax, while also holding local governments unharmed, has been supported by both Democrats and Republicans alike. It’s time to eliminate the personal property tax to help alleviate some of the financial stress our small businesses continue to face.

Read our full statement HERE.

Safe Harbor Bill

Yesterday there was a public hearing in the WI State Senate Committee on Judiciary and Public Safety on Senate Bill 245: prosecuting or adjudicating delinquent a person under the age of 18 for committing an act of prostitution, also known as the Safe Harbor bill. 

Anyone who knows me much at all knows I’ve cared deeply about passing this bill since before my time in the legislature. I could argue for pages why this bill is important to protect children from sex trafficking, against re-traumatization, increase successful prosecutions of traffickers, and set a public expectation that as a state, Wisconsin will protect our kids from sex trafficking and there isn’t a partisan wedge that should get in the way of that. However, for testimony yesterday, I chose to sum it up succinctly, “Child victims should not be charged with the crimes of their abusers.”

In honor of childhoods everywhere, may 2021-22 be the session Wisconsin joins the majority of the United States and gets this bill across the finish line.

Gun Violence Prevention Bills

On Thursday, Senator Melissa Agard and my Democratic colleagues in the legislature introduced legislation for Extreme Risk Protection Orders (ERPO) and universal background checks on gun sales. I am a co-author of both bills. 

Gun violence is a public health crisis in Wisconsin. We must pass universal background checks and Extreme Risk Protection Order (ERPO) legislation to help combat this crisis.

I will not treat gun violence or mass shootings as inevitable. We can pass gun violence prevention legislation that will save lives and curb the ripple effects of trauma in our communities. 

We have heard your voices, we know what we need to do, and we have the power to do it. Now let's get it done.

Read my full statement HERE.

Committee this Week

On Tuesday we held a public hearing in the Committee on Mental Health regarding Assembly Bill 564 and voted on the bill the following day. I introduced a substitute amendment to AB 564 with my fellow Democrats on the committee. The amendment contained the Governor's mental health proposals for schools, proposals that were removed from the budget by Republicans (you might remember this is one of the reasons I voted against the final version of the budget). Our amendment would have provided sustainable long term mental health funding to our schools, as opposed to the one time funding the bill proposes. It also spends state money that currently exists thanks to Governor Evers' partial veto power that set aside $550 million.

The Republican proposal spends federal dollars that the governor has stated do not exist because the funds have already been allocated.

It is important to me that we fund the mental health needs in our schools, and any proposal that is sent to the floor of the Assembly should have a funding source that exists. Sadly, Republicans rejected our amendment, and instead voted through their proposal that does not have an existing funding source.

Read our full statement on the bill and our substitute amendment HERE.

CBS58 came to my office after the public hearing to cover the conversation going on in Madison right now regarding funding mental health initiatives in schools. The fact that the ARPA funds (federal funds) Republicans are proposing to spend no longer exist is something the bill’s author could have discovered if he had contacted the governor. Neither the bill's author, nor the committee's chair, had contacted the governor to ask about the funding for this bill. Because my office had reached out to the governor, we knew we'd need a different proposal if we wanted to successfully fund mental health initiatives for Wisconsin's schools. Democrats support funding mental health initiatives, and Wisconsin has state funding to do it. Over and over again we have proposed funding important mental health initiatives in schools, and we will continue to propose initiatives. We cannot allow this to become a political wedge without movement toward solutions.

Read the article/watch the news story from CBS 58 on this issue HERE.

State of Education

Yesterday State Superintendent Jill Underly gave the State of Education. Thank you to Superintendent Underly for advocating for properly funding for our public schools and emphasizing the importance of mental health care for our students. 

Watch her speech HERE.

Session Next Week

Next week on Tuesday at 1pm the Assembly will be in session. Watch the full session on wiseye.org

City of Milwaukee - $100 COVID-19 Vaccine Incentive

The city of Milwaukee announced this week that they are doing a vaccine incentive, now that the state incentive has ended. They are now giving Milwaukee residents who receive their first dose of the COVID-19 vaccine $100, while supplies last. If you are interested in this program, you must receive your vaccine at one of the following locations:

  • Northwest Health Center at 7630 W. Mills Road 
  • Southside Health Center at 1639 S. 23rd Street

Read more about the program HERE.

Mid Autumn Festival

Happy Mid-Autumn festival to those who celebrated earlier this week! Mid-Autumn festival is a traditional Chinese festival celebrated in many Asian countries, celebrating the fall harvest and looking forward to a prosperous year ahead. This festival is celebrated on the 15th day of the 8th month of the Chinese lunisolar calendar, coinciding with the full moon. We hope you all have time to connect with one another today, give thanks, and look ahead to a prosperous year.

Blue Books Are In!

We now have lots and lots of 2021-22 Blue Books. Please email us at Rep.Vining@legis.wisconsin.gov if you are interested in receiving this FREE book and we will send one to you. The blue book provides information about Wisconsin state government as well as Wisconsin laws, favorites, and history. 

COVID-19 Vaccine Update

As of September 24th, 6,317,439 COVID-19 vaccines have been administered in Wisconsin and 56.5% of Wisconsin residents have received at least one dose, with 53.3% fully vaccinated. 

If you have not yet been vaccinated, now is a critical time to get your vaccine. The vaccine protects individuals and communities from getting seriously ill or dying of COVID-19, including the variants. Currently, Wisconsin is seeing a rise in cases as the Delta variant spreads among the unvaccinated. The Delta variant spreads more easily and can cause more severe illness. Find more information of COVID-19 variants HERE.

En español, AQUI¿Tiene preguntas sobre la vacuna contra el COVID-19? Llame al 844-684-1064 (llamada gratuita)

For more information about where you can get a vaccine, visit the DHS website HERE.

For more information about where to get vaccinated in Waukesha County, visit their website HERE.

For more information about where to get vaccinated in the city of Wauwatosa, visit their website HERE.

For more information about where to get vaccinated in the city of Milwaukee, visit their website HERE. En español AQUI

COVID-19 Case Update

For daily updated information on COVID-19 in Wisconsin, visit the DHS website HERE.

14th District Counties

Milwaukee -  127,301 confirmed cases (increase of 183*)
Waukesha - 51,166 confirmed cases (increase of 155*)

*Changes over day prior


Forward together,

Rep. Robyn Vining


Contact Us: 

State Capitol
P.O. Box 8953
Madison, WI 53708 

PH: (608) 266-9180
TF: (888) 534-0014

Email: Rep.Vining@legis.wi.gov 
Web: www.vining.assembly.wi.gov 

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