March 11, 2022

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Banning the Bans

I introduced legislation this week to protect consumers and stop yet another attempt by the government to dictate how you live your life.

As we are all painfully aware, energy prices have been on an unprecedented rise. Sadly, the forces of big government have not been making things any better.

In particular, an alarming nationwide movement has been under way in which municipalities have begun banning or phasing out natural gas connections to homes and businesses. This began in 2019 in Berkeley, California and has more recently spread to prominent cities like New York. Proponents of these restrictions argue that we should use the government to enforce a transition to the electric grid for everything from our cars to the way we heat our homes.

There are a number of reasons why this idea is madness.

  1. Our electric grid is not prepared to take on the added demand, and in fact has become less reliable in recent years.
  2. Extreme cold weather events already place stress on our grid, and removing entire sources of energy from the market would only exacerbate this problem.
  3. Interventions like these raise energy prices, which always disproportionately impacts the most vulnerable.
  4. The free market is constantly evolving as cleaner and more efficient energy sources become better and cheaper. These sources should win on their merits, not because of ham-fisted policies which seek to force consumers to make economically irrational choices.

That is why I introduced Assembly Bill 1080 this week to "ban the bans" and prevent this disastrous practice from coming to Wisconsin. This bill prohibits municipalities from restricting the delivery or connection of utility service based on the type or source of energy provided. In effect, your right to connect your home to your local natural gas line will remain.

Twenty other states have already enacted similar laws. I look forward to Wisconsin joining their ranks by passing this bill.

Holding Government Accountable

Next Wednesday, March 16th, I will be joining my colleagues on the Regulatory Licensing Reform Committee in holding an investigative hearing on the appalling performance of the Department of Safety and Professional Services (DSPS).

My office has received numerous complaints about DSPS from constituents. Many have seen their license applications and renewals languish in limbo for months on end. Adding insult to injury, the department typically wastes no time in processing their application fees. All the while, these individuals are forced to turn down job offers and eat into their savings while they wait for permission from the government to work in their chosen professions.

I am eager to get some answers directly from DSPS and identify more areas for reform. You will be able to watch the hearing on Wisconsin Eye on Wednesday, March 16th at 10am.

Daylight Saving Time

Here is your friendly reminder that Daylight Saving Time begins on Sunday. Don't forget to turn your clocks forward when you go to bed on Saturday night, and be sure to build an extra hour of sleep into your weekend. The week following the beginning of DST unfortunately brings with it a measurable increase in sleep deprivation-related vehicle accidents.

Community Events

Germantown

Event: Coffee and Conversation with Germantown Police Department
Date and Time: March 15th from 9:00 AM to 10:30 AM
Location: Latitude Cafe - W156 N9636 Pilgrim Rd

Mequon

Event: Traditions on the Green - St. Patrick's Day
Date and Time: March 13th from 11:30 PM to 1:30 PM
Location: Mequon Public Market (Mezzanine) - 6300 W. Mequon
Description: St. Patrick's Day with Gathering on the Green will feature a free stained glass art activity and live music from local youth musicians. More details here.

Erin

Event: 42nd Annual St. Patrick's Day Parade
Date and Time: March 17th at 11:00 AM
Description: The parade starts at the intersection of Hwy K and Loghouse Road. It will travel south, ending at Hwy 167.

Glendale

Event: March Birthday Party
Date and Time: March 13th from 5:00 PM to 7:00 PM
Location: Sprecher Brewery - 701 W Glendale Ave
Description: If March is your birthday month, stop in and enjoy a free pint of beer or soda in Sprecher's taproom.

Brown Deer

Event: Red Cross Blood Drive
Date and Time: March 18th from 1:00 PM to 6:00 PM
Location: St. Mark Evangelical Lutheran Church - 8635 N 60th St
Description: Set up your appointment here.

 
 

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