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March 1, 2019


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ABATE Day at the Capitol

Motorcyclists from all over the state came to talk to lawmakers about keeping motorcyclists safe on Wisconsin roadways by preventing crashes through awareness and training. The issues that we discussed included the clarifying the definition of a motorcycle, vehicle data recorder privacy protection, and regulating autonomous vehicles.

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Governor Evers' Budget

Governor Evers unveiled his budget request Thursday night at the Capitol. While I have my concerns, I believe there is common ground where we can work together. I was extremely disappointed that the governor hardly spoke to the issues in rural Wisconsin and instead chose to focus on the priorities of Madison and Milwaukee. 

Our shared priorities include investing in broadband access, criminal justice reform that includes increased pay for attorneys who provide representation for the poor, and additional funding for our schools. 

My biggest concern is the enormous price tag on the Governor's proposals. This proposal requires a additional $6 billion over last year's budget that includes a $500 million tax increase on job-creators and farmers, an increase in property taxes by an average of $150 per home, and a plan to increase spending by more than $1,000 for every man, woman, and child in the state.

My goal is to come to an agreement with Governor Evers on a budget that is best for both the rural and urban areas of our state while making sure we are being good stewards of hard working taxpayers.

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Local Sheriffs Come to Madison

This week I met with Grant County Sheriff Nate Dreckman, Lafayette County Sheriff Reg Gill, and Iowa County Sheriff Steve Michek to discuss the legislative priorities of the Badger State Sheriffs' Association. We discussed ways to grant protective status to county jailers without increasing our counties' budgets as well as extending benefits to the families of law enforcement officers who were killed in duty. The Sheriffs also advocated for the modernization of Wisconsin's 911 services to transition to digital from an analog system.  Thanks for making the trip!

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This Week's Visits

I recently had the privilege of speaking to representatives from the American Council of Engineering Companies as well as the Wisconsin Nurses Association. El Schaffer and Greg Jewell of Jewell Associates Engineers Inc. discussed how insufficient funding for capital projects can negatively impact taxpayers and the potetial for economic growth. According to their sources, each dollar invested in capital projects results in three dollars of economic growth.

Wisconsin Nurses Association representative, Jan Bucci, outlined ways to combat the nurse faculty shortage in Wisconsin. Over the next seven years, 575 nursing faculty positions will become vacant. She noted the importance of these positions needed to train the next generation of nurses and the steps we can take as legislators to make sure these positions are filled.