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(608)266-5780 | State Capitol, Room 307 West, P.O. Box 8953, Madison, WI 53708 |



Johnsmith with Dan Sebranek & Larry Dalton

Friday, Jan. 3 - Saturday Jan. 4

7:30 p.m.

Pump House Regional Arts Center



La Crosse Community Annual Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. Celebration

Monday, Jan. 16

7:00 p.m.

Viterbo Fine Arts Center

929 Jackson St



Winter Rec Fest

Monday, Jan. 16 - Saturday, Jan. 28


Downtown Main Street, Inc.'s New Year Celebration Social

Wednesday, Jan. 25

5:30 p.m.

The Court Above Main

420 Main St




State Capitol
Room 307 West
P.O. Box 8953
Madison, WI 53708


(608) 266-5780
Toll Free:

(888) 534-0095


Friends and Neighbors,

Welcome to the 2017-18 State Assembly session! This is the first of a series of bi-weekly electronic newsletters aimed at keeping my constituents informed by highlighting relevant legislation, as well as featuring goings-on in our community.

Following my inauguration for a fourth term on Jan. 3, I have been busy corresponding and meeting with constituents, attending community events and drafting legislation. This session, I was appointed as the ranking Democratic member on the Tourism and Workforce Development committees, and will also serve on the Colleges and Universities, Children and Families, Small Business Development and Transportation committees.

I am proud to represent the 95th District in Madison and vow to be a strong voice for Western Wisconsin at the State Capitol. Thank you for electing me to serve as your representative once again.

For more information about inauguration, click here.

Please do not hesitate to contact me regarding any issue by calling (608) 266-5780 or e-mailing me at

Continue reading for important updates on state and community issues!


Best Wishes,

Jill Billings
State Representative
95th Assembly District




Meet My Staff

This session Kathy Divine and Adelina Yankova will be working alongside me. They are well acquainted with the 95th District, have up-to-date knowledge on my committees and legislative work and are passionate about working with constituents.

Kathy has been with me since I was first elected in 2011 and continues to serve as my wonderful Chief of Staff. Newly joining her as my Legislative Aide will be Adelina, a proud La Crosse native who graduated from UW-Madison this spring.

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Kathy and Adelina joined me to celebrate my inauguration earlier this month.




January is Human Trafficking Awareness Month

Since a presidential proclamation in 2010, January is annually observed as National Slavery and Human Trafficking Prevention Month. The proclamation was meant to bring attention to the prevalence of human trafficking as a modern form of slavery in hopes of eradicating the problem.

This is an especially relevant issue in Wisconsin, which saw the third most cases of underage trafficking victims in 2015. Visit the Wisconsin Department of Justice's Human Trafficking webpage for a list of resources or to report a tip.

In our community, the Viterbo University Art Department is raising awareness to end human trafficking through their "Traffik 2017" exhibition, set to be on display in May at the Conference on the Maltreatment of Children. The exhibition will feature pieces created in response to human trafficking and modern slavery, however the artists see fit. The Viterbo Art Department will be accepting 2D and 3D media submission until March 1. To read more and learn how to submit your art, visit the official Call-to-Artists page.


My Newly Introduced Legislation:
Sexually Exploited Children Protection Act

In observance of National Human Trafficking Awareness Day, I introduced LRB-0687 this Wednesday. This bill would protect child human trafficking victims from being charged with prostitution. Under current law, children who have been trafficked are not immune from criminal charges for being involved in illegal prostitution activities even when coerced. My proposal aims to illuminate the fact that child victims of sexual exploitation are extremely vulnerable, and should be treated as such instead of as criminals.  

This legislation would build on progress made last session, which saw the passing of a Senate bill that allows for the investigation of non-caregivers reported to be involved in child sex trafficking, as well as added human trafficking to the definition of child abuse under the Children's Code.

You can read my statement on the bill here.



Task Force on Opioid Abuse

The Governor's Task Force on Opioid Abuse issued a set of recommendations to Gov. Scott Walker earlier this month, prompting Walker to call a special session to address the growing problem of opioid addiction in Wisconsin. The task force's proposal includes 11 bills, $12 million in program funding and 19 agency actions.

With opioid-related overdose deaths more than tripling between 2003 and 2014, drug dependency has become an epidemic in our state. As a member of the governor's task force, I am glad to see bipartisan commitment to tackling its devastating effects. I would also like to commend U.S. Sen. Tammy Baldwin for her hard work in negotiating additional funding to combat opioid abuse through the 21st Century Cures Act, which allocated an extra $1 billion to the states for opioid prevention, treatment and recovery initiatives.

I am proud to say the La Crosse area has served as a leader in confronting the issue head-on and garnering community support to end opioid abuse. Our county Health Department Director Jennifer Rombalski also serves on the governor's task force and I greatly appreciate her advocacy and professional expertise.

To learn more, you can read my statement about the special session here.




Response to Governor's State of the State Address

Gov. Scott Walker delivered his annual State of the State address on Tuesday afternoon, spending the majority of the time congratulating his own administration on what he sees as successful governing up until this point. Who it has been successful for, however, remained unclear, as the sentiment I repeatedly hear from my constituents is that Wisconsin's current government isn't working for them. His narrative is out of the touch with Wisconsin's middle class, many of whom have been hurt by the GOP's policies.

Between expectedly touting job creation and lauding voucher school programs, Gov. Walker delivered what was perhaps the most surprising part of his address -- a promise to cut in-state tuition at all UW System schools as part of his upcoming state budget. While I am a big proponent of affordable higher education, I am worried about whether the governor's plan is realistic. I hope that the governor has thought about where the extra revenue will come from and will ensure any such cuts are fully funded, as well as further provide the budget necessary to maintain and advance educational standards and our state's universities.

Click here for my Tuesday statement in response to the governor's address.



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