Katsma_websitebanner_2017 resized.jpg

November 12, 2021



Back by popular demand: it's the November edition of CHEERS! and JEERS!  In no particular order:


CHEERS! to Doug Hall on the occasion of his recent retirement from the Sheboygan Falls Police Department after 31 years serving our communities.  Senator Devin LeMahieu and I recently had the opportunity to congratulate and thank Doug for his outstanding work (pictured above).  Separately, the Legislature convened a special ceremony just a couple weeks ago to recognize first responders from across the state; in case you missed it, you may read all about that day, including Sheboygan's very own Officer Alicia Rotier, in my most recent newsletter.


JEERS! to the results of a new study published by the Wisconsin Institute for Law and Liberty demonstrating, even after a decade of Republican reforms, Wisconsin continues to be among the most regulated states in the Midwest and the entire nation.  The authors of the study estimate that if a person were to sit down and try to read the Wisconsin Administrative Code for 40 hours per week (and I don't recommend that you try this), it would take you 17 weeks just to read it one time.  Our Department of Natural Resources alone enforces more than 55,000 regulatory restrictions.  Don't get me wrong... practically all regulations are well intended... but we have plenty of work ahead to continue rooting out ways in which government is unnecessarily stifling personal liberties and economic growth.


I'll gladly give credit where credit is due: CHEERS! to Governor Tony Evers for bucking opposition from many members of his own party and signing Senate Bill 373 into law.  The new law requires the Department of Public Instruction to develop an online portal that will allow the public to access, on a single webpage, all the financial information that the agency already collects from the state's school districts.  It's a giant leap forward in transparency at a time when parents are understandably concerned about their schools' performance metrics.


JEERS! to the Governor, however, for vetoing another bipartisan bill aimed at improving student reading assessment and helping catch kids up in reading before they fall too far behind.  Only 27.5 percent of Wisconsin's K-12 students are proficient in reading, according to the latest state testing; COVID-19-related interruptions of their education have made things worse; and Senate Bill 454 had bipartisan support for improving outcomes and increasing parents' awareness and involvement.  Regrettably, Governor Evers couldn't agree.



CHEERS! to some excellent news from a new report by the Wisconsin Policy Forum (and shown in the graphic above).  In the authors' own words:

From 1999 to 2019, no other state saw a decrease in state and local taxes as a share of personal income that was larger than the 1.87 percentage point drop in Wisconsin.  If instead we look at the percentage drop of 15.4 percent in Wisconsin's tax burden over those 20 years, then only Florida (-18.5 percent) and Michigan (-15.5 percent) had larger decreases.  Under both methods, Wisconsin's decline is either the largest or nearly so.



Finally, CHEERS! and THANK YOU! to all the men and women who have worn the uniform of the United States of America.  I'll never be able to put into words my appreciation for your love of our great nation.  I'm proud of you!


Best wishes on your weekend!


Electronic signature.jpg



Office of Representative Terry Katsma
State Capitol, Room 306 East
P.O. Box 8952
Madison, WI 53708

(608) 266-0656
Rep.Katsma@legis.wisconsin.gov|  |