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A Note from Rep. Edming

Welcome to the latest edition of my update from the State Capitol. It was an incredibly busy week down in Madison serving the hardworking people of the 87th Assembly District and I look forward to sharing more about it with you below.

This week the Assembly was in session to consider a number of proposals including the legislation that fulfills the legislature's constitutional redistricting duty and legislation to aid a couple of important paper mills in our state.

As always, please don't hesitate to reach out to me if you have any thoughts on issues before the legislature or if you need assistance with a state agency.


Fulfilling Our Constitutional Duty

This week both houses of the legislature met to consider a number of legislative proposals. A part of each house's session was approving legislation fulfilling the Legislature's constitutional duty to redistrict Wisconsin's legislative and congressional districts to reflect population changes in our state.

Upon the release of the data from the U.S. Census every ten years, the Legislature undertakes the duty of redistricting as outlined in Article IV, Section 3 of the Wisconsin Constitution. To be clear, it is the duty of the legislature, not the executive branch or an appointed commission to complete this task.

Earlier this year Governor Evers formed the People's Maps Commission to attempt to insert the executive branch into this legislative process. The final legislative district proposal put forward by this commission would reduce the number of majority-minority districts and would also result in more municipal splits and a higher population deviation than the proposal put forward by the Legislature. In fact, the legislative district proposal that was put forward by this commission was so bad that a bipartisan supermajority of 77 members of the Assembly voted to reject them during Thursday's floor session.

The new districts proposed by the Legislature preserve minority districts and have less population deviation, municipal splits, and incumbent pairings than those proposed by the commission. The Senate and Assembly approved the new district maps and they now head to the governor's desk. While Governor Evers has signaled that he intends to veto these maps I hope he reconsiders after seeing the bipartisan rejection of the People's Maps Commission maps. For more information on the maps approved by the legislature, you can click here.

Bill to Help Our Loggers Advances

In my e-update last week, I discussed legislation that I helped bring forward to help our states struggling timber industry. This bill, Assembly Bill (AB) 682, would authorize the Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation (WEDC) to provide a grant of up to $1 million to help maintain equipment at the Verso paper mill in Wisconsin Rapids for a potential sale to a new operator and to allow WEDC to loan up to $15 million to a new operator to purchase and reopen the smaller mill in Park Falls.

Prior to its closure, the Wisconsin Rapids mill alone utilized approximately 25% of all the pulpwood harvested in Wisconsin. Getting this mill, as well as the one in Park Falls, back up and running is incredibly important for our state’s timber industry and the economy of northern Wisconsin. I am happy to report that AB 682 was approved by the full Assembly on Thursday with overwhelming bipartisan support. The bill now advances to the State Senate where I hope they will take it up soon. Click on the video below to hear my comments on the Assembly floor in support of AB 682.

Thank You Veterans

On Thursday we celebrated Veterans Day. For many years it has been my honor to attend Veterans Day ceremonies around the 87th District and play Taps. This year I was unable to do so because my duties as your state representative required me to be in Madison for the aforementioned Assembly floor session.

I would like to extend my sincere appreciation to all of the veterans across the district. Thank you to all those who answered the call to serve in our nation's armed forces. Without your selfless service, we would be without the freedoms we have today.

Upcoming Events Around the 87th

One of my favorite parts about serving as your state representative is getting out and interacting with constituents at many of the wonderful community events across the 87th District. Check out some of the upcoming events around the district below. Also, if you know of any other events, please contact my office and let me know, so I can include them in a future e-update and try to attend myself.

Check out some of the events coming up around the district:

Stay Up to Date

One of the best ways to stay up to date with what is going on in Madison is to sign up for the legislature's notification tracking service. This service allows you to follow legislative activity in Madison. Once you create a free account you can sign up to receive notifications about specific bills or committees as well as legislative activity pertaining to a subject area (i.e. agriculture, veterans). You can sign up for this service at notify.legis.wisconsin.gov.