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October 8th, 2021


This Week in the Legislature


Contents

  • Local Government Committee Meeting
  • Criminal Justice Hearing
  • Unregistered Vehicle Bill Executive Session
  • Reminder: Blue Books
  • COVID-19 Vaccine Information

Local Government Committee Meeting

This week the Local Government Committee met for both a public hearing and an executive session.

During the public hearing the committee heard testimony on four bills. One of those bills was Assembly Bill 516 related the ability for local governments to post speed limits for ATV/UTVs along designated routes. If you’d like to learn more about this proposal you can visit this link or contact my office.

During the executive session the committee considered two proposals which both passed with uniramous bipartisan support. One of those proposals, Assembly Bill 287 allows villages and towns additional flexibility when filing their general transportation aids paperwork to the state agencies. Often times smaller units of government may not have a full time staff to process paperwork with state agencies. Our local governments should not face burdensome funding decreases for late paperwork. This bill will provide an extra measure of flexibility.


Criminal Justice Meeting

The Assembly Committee on Criminal Justice and Public Safety also met this week for an executive session and public hearing. 

The committee heard testimony on two sexual assault kit testing bills during the the public hearing. Assembly Bill 67 (AB 67) creates a procedure in state statutes for the handling and processing of sexual assault test kits. The bill requires a law enforcement agency to collect a test kit within 72 hours from a healthcare professional, and then send the kit into the state crime lab within 15 days, where it is processed and stored for up to 50 years.

The authors of this bill, Rep. David Steffen (R-Green Bay) and Senator Rob Cowles (R-Green Bay) worked in collaboration with state Department of Justice to craft this bill to aid in the processing of these kits.

I am proud to support this bill that provides support to victims of sexual assault and help bring their perpetrators to justice.

The committee also heard testimony on Assembly Bill 87 (AB 87). AB 87 authored by Senator Alberta Darling (R-River Hills) and Representative Jeremy Thiesfeldt (R-Fond Du Lac) allows sexual assault survivors to confidentially track the processing of their test kit from collection through the justice process. Under the bill, the Wisconsin Sexual Assault Kit Tracking System will be a database for health care professionals, law enforcement, state crime laboratory personnel, and prosecutors to update information on the location and status of a sexual assault kit. 

This bipartisan bill has already passed the full senate chamber earlier this session, I am eager to see this bill make it through the legislative process in the Assembly Chamber as well. 


 Unregistered Vehicles Bill Executive Session

Assembly Bill 445 (AB 445) a bill I authored with Senator Marklein (R-Spring Green) passed the Assembly Transportation Committee and will now be eligible for a full vote in the Assembly. The bill has already passed in the senate chamber. This bill narrows an excessively broad exception related to the operation of unregistered vehicles during a declared state of emergency. We worked in consultation with Green County District Attorney Craig Nolen and local law enforcement to formulate a technical fix to further clarify the intent of existing law.

Reminder: Blue Books Available!

The 2021-22 Wisconsin Blue Books are now available! These books contain important facts about our state as well as contact information for state government agencies and elected officials.

If you'd like a copy, my office will send you one free of charge!

Please email my office at Rep.Novak@legis.wisconsin.gov or call (608)-266-7502 and provide your full name and address and I will send you a copy.


COVID-19 Vaccine Information

For all full list of COVID-19 vaccine sites statewide please click the vaccine finder link here.


Have a Great Weekend!!


As always, please do not hesitate to follow up with any additional questions or concerns you may have. I can be reached at Rep.Novak@legis.wisconsin.gov or (608) 237-9151.