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Conservative Achievement Award

Conservative Achievement Award.jpg (3)On Tuesday, I was honored and thankful to receive the Conservative Achievement Award from the American Conservative Union Foundation. As I have done since I was first elected, I will continue to stand by conservative principles and values for the State of Wisconsin.

Evers' Budget Vetoes

Upon signing the 2019-21 State Budget submitted to him by the legislature, the Governor also submitted the list of 78 partial vetoes. This list contained fewer vetoes than has been the norm for past governors of our state. My impression of the vetoes was that they had 4 themes:

1) Increasing spending limits from the legislature’s budget by negating the legislature’s elimination of statutory language and numbers.
2) Reducing requirements for welfare recipients.
3) In numerous places where the legislature specifically directed funding or actions toward specific counties or municipalities, the vetoes broadened the base of potential recipients, which consistently added Milwaukee and Madison. 
4) In a number of provisions where the legislature specifically directed funds to a specific organization, the vetoes instead removed the directive and awarded the authority to the discretion of a state agency.

Listed below are a few highlights of the 78 vetoes issued by the Governor:

1) Education: Increased funding for K-12 public schools by raising the per-pupil state aid amount to $742 in each of the next two fiscal years, up from the $679 and $704 the Legislature put in the budget. This will increase the proposed funding by $87 million, adding onto the $500 million increase the Legislature passed.


2) County and Municipal Road Aids: Budget provisions require the Department of Transportation to expend $90,000,000 GPR on local road projects. The Governor is partially vetoing this  section by reducing the appropriation by $15,000,000 GPR because he objects to the magnitude of general fund dollars being utilized for transportation purposes in this budget. He is also partially vetoing these sections to remove the limitations placed on the use of the general fund monies because the Governor objects to the restrictions that these constraints place on the department to fund grants to the most needed projects throughout the state.


3) Distribution of additional Assistant District Attorney positions: In vetoing what the budget proposed, the Governor will direct the Department of Administration to work with the State Prosecutors Office to allocate the positions to counties in a manner that considers need holistically, rather than allocating them to 32 specific counties.


4) Rural Dentist Program: The Governor is changing the structure of the program passed by the Legislature by vetoing the requirement that the students commit to practice dentistry in a dental health shortage area, the requirement that practice can only occur in specific counties, the limitation on the number of scholarships that can be provided annually and the dollar amount associated with each scholarship, and the appropriation for Marquette University School of Dentistry administrative costs related to the program. The Governor believes these items in the program are too restrictive towards their cause.


5) Grants for Personal Care Workers: The budget would require the Department of Workforce Development to allocate Wisconsin Fast Forward funding for grants to attract and retain personal care workers. The Governor is vetoing this section in its entirety because he objects to constraining the department in responding to worker training needs and demands, and wants to provide greater flexibility to the department.


6) School bus grants: The budget requires the Department of Administration to establish a program to award $3,000,000 in grants of Volkswagen settlement funds for the replacement of school buses owned and operated by school boards during the 2019-21 fiscal biennium. The Governor objects to the narrow use of Volkswagen settlement funds only for school buses under this provision. In addition, he believes the state has a responsibility to be a leader in adopting and encouraging the use of alternative fuels as part of an overall strategy to address climate change. Therefore, the Governor is partially vetoing section 55c to remove language directing the Department of Administration to establish a grant program that would award settlement funds to school boards for the replacement of school buses and require school boards to provide matching funds equal to the amount of the grant award. As a result of the veto, the Department of Administration would establish a more flexible grant program that will award Volkswagen settlement funds to advance the use of alternative fuels in accordance with the settlement guidelines.

To read more about Governor Evers' Veto Message, click here.

A Bill to Safeguard Rape Victims

Tuesday, Representative Chris Taylor and I circulated a bill that will create the Wisconsin Sexual Assault Kit Tracking System, which will allow victims of sexual assault to access information regarding the status of their sexual assault kit as it proceeds through the criminal justice process. This will be a survivor focused system that will ensure the privacy and protection of the survivor at every step, while adding a layer of autonomy that gives the survivor the ability to be informed and involved in the process. The system will help revolutionize the criminal justice process for all involved in sexual assault cases. Information on the bill's process will be updated in the future.

Fond du Lac County Fair (Wed, July 17th - Sun, 21st)

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Come on down to the annual Fond du Lac County Fair at the Fond du Lac County Fairgrounds for a great source of education, entertainment, and affordable family fun!

Visit https://www.fonddulaccountyfair.com/ for more details.

Upcoming Holidays

  • Friday, July 12 – Different Colored Eyes Day
  • Saturday, July 13 – National French Fry Day
  • Sunday, July 14 – Shark Awareness Day
  • Monday, July 15 – Global Hug Your Kids Day
  • Tuesday, July 16 – World Snake Day
  • Wednesday, July 17 – National Hot Dog Day
  • Thursday, July 18 – World Listening Day

For more fun and out-there holidays, visit checkiday.com, a website created by a former Fond du Lac resident!

Today in History - July 12
  • 1804 – Former United States Secretary of the Treasury Alexander Hamilton died after being shot in a pistol duel by Vice President Aaron Burr.
  • 1901 – Cy Young won his 300th game.
  • 1954 – President Eisenhower put forward a plan for an interstate highway system.
  • 1995 – Enrique Iglesias released his first album, "Enrique Iglesias."
  • 2017 – A giant iceberg broke away from the Larsen C Ice Shelf in Antarctica, about 6,000 sq km in length.