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A Note from Rep. Edming

Welcome back to my e-update. Spring has definitely sprung around the State Capitol with the tulips in full bloom around the building.

The past couple of weeks have been incredibly busy serving the people of the 87th Assembly District. I was down in Madison both this week and last week for committee hearings. Also, my staff and I traveled around the 87th District at the end of last week to meet with constituents during district office hours. Traveling across the district reminded me that I have the privilege of representing the best Assembly District in the state. You can read more about my office hours and other parts of my last couple of weeks below.


Gathering Input from Around the 87th

This past Thursday and Friday, my staff and I traveled around the 87th District for my district office hours. Throughout the two days, my staff and I met with folks at six locations throughout the 87th and had many great conversations. I appreciate the opportunity to meet with a number of my constituents and get their feedback on the 2021-23 state budget proposal and other state issues. Some of the top concerns I heard about from folks include:

  • Increased funding for broadband expansion
  • Continuing to Invest in K-12 Education
  • Protecting Our 2nd Amendment Rights
  • Preserving the Integrity of Our Elections
  • Assistance with State Agencies

I would like to thank the businesses and local governments across the district that opened their doors for me to sit down with my constituents. If you would like to see more pictures from my office hours you can check them out on my Facebook page by clicking here.

A Number of Disappointing Vetoes

In several of my e-updates over the past few weeks, I have discussed a package of legislation that my Republican colleagues and I brought forward that would have created a plan of how to spend the $3.2 billion in federal stimulus funding our state will be receiving as a part of the American Rescue Plan Act. This package would have helped to address some critical needs in rural Wisconsin like boldly investing in broadband expansion, funding rural economic development efforts, and providing assistance to farmers and our tourism industry. To learn more about this package you can click here to read the story from one of my earlier e-updates.

Unfortunately, Governor Evers recently vetoed this entire 11 bill package. While the governor has shared some broad ideas of how he plans to spend this funding, he has yet to provide many specifics outside of providing support for small businesses. While the governor often talks about working with the legislature, with these vetoes he is once again showing that he does not want to work with the legislature and instead go it alone.

In addition to these disappointing vetoes, Governor Evers also vetoed two more pieces of legislation that were important priorities for many of the folks around the 87th District, Assembly Bill (AB) 23 and AB 24.

AB 23 would have prohibited the Department of Health Services and local health officers from forcing Wisconsinites to receive the COVID-19 vaccine. As I have said before, the decision to receive a vaccination should be a personal decision, not a mandate from the government, an employer, or anyone else. Regrettably, Governor Evers does not agree. 

The other bill, AB 24 would have prohibited a local health officer from ordering the closure of or forbidding gatherings in, places of worship. The right to peaceably assemble and freely exercise our religious beliefs is one the most sacred of our constitutionally protected rights. Unfortunately, it appears that the governor does not support protecting our 1st Amendment rights from government overreach.

A New Tool to Protect Our Local Roads

A couple of years ago, I heard from some town officials in the 87th District about the problems that they had been having with beavers causing damage to local roadways. Beavers often dam up culverts under or near roads, which can cause flooding and damage the roadway. In other areas of the state, muskrats also cause problems when they burrow into a road embankment and undermine the structural integrity of the road.

Recently, I testified before the Assembly Committee on Transportation in support of AB 163. This legislation that I've authored would give local governments a new tool to prevent damage to local roadways caused by beavers and muskrats. This bill would allow the DNR or an agent of a local government authorized by the DNR to discharge a firearm within 50 feet of the center of a roadway to shoot a beaver or muskrat that is
causing damage to a roadway.
Thank you to Town of Atlanta chairman Steve Tiegs for making the long trip down to Madison to speak in favor of this important legislation. To learn more about this bill, click here to read my testimony.

More From Around the 87th

Congratulations Dawn Swenson

I completed my tour of the 87th District last Friday with a stop in Rib Lake, where Senator Petrowski and I had the honor of presenting Dawn Swenson a citation from the State of Wisconsin on the occasion of her retirement after 40 years of dedicated service as the clerk for the Village of Rib Lake. I would like to thank Dawn for her many years of service to the people of Rib Lake and wish her the best in her retirement.

Upcoming Events Around the 87th District

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 around the 87th District. With more and more events being held once again, I am looking to start sharing information about upcoming community events in my e-updates. Do you know of any upcoming events around the 87th District? If you do, please contact my office and let me know, so I can include it in a future e-update and try to attend myself.

Check out the following events happening around the district:

  • Honor the Fallen Ride
    • Saturday, May 8th, 8:00 AM - Drop Zone Bar and Grill. Ladysmith
  • Rusk County Law Enforcement Memorial Service
    • Thursday, May 13th, 7:00 PM - the Legacy Amphitheater in Memorial Park, Ladysmith
Happy Mother's Day!

To all of the outstanding mothers around the 87th District, I hope you have a wonderful Mother's Day this weekend!