Walker vetoes provision in state budget for placement of sexually violent persons

By Neena Pacholke, WAOW News 

A bipartisan provision that would restrict the placement of sexually violent offenders was shot down by Gov. Scott Walker before he signed the state budget.

This is an issue Portage County has been dealing with for months.

"We have two people, one from Chippewa County [and] one from Washington County who were placed here in spite of the Town of Alban's protest," said State Rep. Katrina Shankland of Stevens Point. "In addition, the Portage County judge had ruled that the location was inappropriate but they did it anyway."

The democrat has been working on a provision in the budget that was shot down by Gov.Scott Walker.

"It would require that sexually violent persons be placed in their home counties," said Shankland.

Gov. Walker's office said he believed this provision needs separate legislation allowing more public input. 

Members of the community are shocked with the veto, but remain hopeful.

"I already heard from one person from the Town of Alban who wanted to come with me to the capitol to advocate on this issue," said Shankland.

The Governor's office also said the provision would eliminate current distance rulings - allowing these offenders closer to areas such as school or playgrounds.

Shankland said his decision to veto her motion is a setback but she hopes to work with the Governor to find a solution.