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



13th Annual Family Fest

Monday, Feb. 27

10 a.m. - 3 p.m.

La Crosse Center



Shrine Circus

Tuesday, Feb. 28

6:30 p.m.

La Crosse Center



Polar Plunge

Friday, March 3 at 5 p.m. &

Saturday, March 4 at 1 p.m.



Eat Week

Sunday, March 5 -

Sunday, March 12

Downtown La Crosse




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


(608) 266-5780
Toll Free:

(888) 534-0095


Friends and Neighbors,

The halls of the Capitol have been buzzing with excitement as the session gets underway. In the past two weeks, the Assembly Committee on Children and Families met to discuss legalizing cannabidiol for medicinal purposes; you can read more about the meeting further down.


I have also been reviewed a number of bills and have been working on drafting legislation of my own set to come out in the coming months. As I work on new bills, I invite all of you to provide me with feedback and let me know what issues are important to you.

Many constituents have reached out to me since the beginning of session through email, phone, by making a stop in my office or at one of my events in the district. I really appreciate all of you staying informed and civically engaged. Hearing from you has been an invaluable resource for me to know how to best serve our community. Thank you for contacting me and I would encourage anyone who has questions or concerns to let me know by calling (608) 266-5780 or e-mailing me at


Please continue reading for more information on the happenings both in La Crosse and statewide.


Best Wishes,

Jill Billings
State Representative
95th Assembly District

La Crosse Center to Receive $5 Million in State Budget

Last week, Governor Scott Walker announced that his state budget proposal includes $5 millionfor the renovation and expansion of the La Crosse Center. I am pleased to see the governor recognize how important the La Crosse Center is for both the economic and cultural development of our community. Click here to read my statement on budget announcement.


February is Teen Dating Violence Awareness Month

February is Teen Dating Violence Awareness Month. Teen dating violence is far more prevalent than many people think; 1 in 3 teens in the U.S. will experience physical, sexual or emotional abuse by someone they are dating before they reach adulthood. Furthermore, a recent Center for Disease Control and Prevention national survey found that 1 in 10 teens reported being physically hurt at least one time by a boyfriend or girlfriend in the year before the survey was taken. It is essential to educate teens early on about the importance of building respectful relationships, as this knowledge will be carried throughout their lives.

Right here in our community, Essential Health Clinic provides La Crosse area residents with high-quality reproductive care, including testing and treatment for sexually-transmitted diseases, as well as education and birth control. Access to these services is necessary in helping people maintain healthy lives. This message rings true for the youth of La Crosse as well, as teens who experience dating violence are at a higher risk of developing long-term negative consequences, including depression, anxiety and substance abuse.



Committee on Children and Families

Last week Wednesday, the Assembly Committee on Children and Families met for the first time this session to discuss proposed Assembly Bill 49. If passed, the bill would make it legal for families to possess cannabidiol -- otherwise known as CBD oil -- in the state of Wisconsin, as long as a doctor has certified it is being used for a medical condition. Though CBD oil is a non-psychoactive substance with proven medical value for individuals and families suffering from chronic pain and illness, it is classified as a Schedule I Drug on the federal level; this has limited doctors' ability to prescribe it as medication as well as parents' and individuals' ability to access and possess it.

Wednesday's committee meeting showed how important access to this medication is for families in Wisconsin. Many brave individuals shared their families' stories and recounted how this medication could help them and their children. I do have concerns that this bill does not go far enough in ensuring families' access to the medication, as it only enables possession of CBD oil and does not enable families to acquire it. To rectify this, I, along with my Democratic colleagues, offered an amendment to the bill that would have allowed for easier access to CBD oil in Wisconsin. However, the amendment did not pass. Nevertheless, I still voted for the bill to pass out of committee, which it did unanimously. I expect the full State Assembly to vote on the bill soon.




Advocacy Groups Visiting the Capitol

Western Technical College

This week, I had the pleasure of participating in the Wisconsin Association for Career and Technical Education (WACTE) panel in Madison, where I had the opportunity to hear from students and staff about WACTE's exceptional work in education. WACTE provides professional development and necessary guidance as they advance their education and careers.


I was also able to meet with students from Western Technical College in La Crosse, an institution that provides hands-on learning that students can apply in their future careers. The high quality of education that students receive at Western Tech provides students with the knowledge they need to be leaders and innovators in their communities. Many thanks to these students for stopping by, and I will continue to do all that I can to support their education and career development.

Scenic Bluffs Community Health Center


I also had the opportunity to meet with representatives from Scenic Bluffs Community Health Center. Scenic Bluffs is an integrative medical provider with services in four counties in our area. As an independent, non-profit primary care center, Scenic Bluffs offers medical, dental, pharmaceutical, chiropractic, mental health and health education services. This aligns with their mission of treating patients holistically and ensuring all their needs can be met in one place. In addition to their centers and outreach center, Scenic Bluffs staff make concerted efforts to meet people where they are by organizing mobile clinic days to more remote communities in the area.

UW System Student Representatives

I enjoyed meeting with student representatives from various UW System campuses, including UW-La Crosse Student Association President Jacob Schimmel. They brought up a series of important issues, which included keeping maintaining allocable segregated fees in the state budget. Moreover, they advocated for the creation of a Violence Prevention Specialist position at every UW System campus; currently, some of the bigger four-year campuses fund this position, but it is not required by law. In the months to come, I will be looking to student representatives as I work on drafting a bill that would make the position mandatory.



Celebrating Aldo Leopold

Aldo Leopold week will begin Friday, March 3 and continue until Saturday, March 11. This is a nationwide week honoring Aldo Leopold's legacy as a wildlife ecologist and conservationalist. Leopold worked for many years in the U.S. National Park Service before becoming a professor at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, where he continued to advocate for commitment to the Wisconsin landscape. We are so fortunate to live in such a beautiful area, and I plan to celebrate nature by spending time outside in the marsh and on the bluffs.

Leopold is viewed as the father of modern wildlife ecology, and pioneered the concept of the "land ethic," calling for mutual respect and responsibility between all members of a given community. This applied not only to humans, but to all parts of the land. He argued that people have a responsibility to defend the natural landscape in order to maintain the wellbeing of a community.

Aldo Leopold is considered today to be one of the most influential conservation thinkers of the 20th century. I am grateful for Leopold's contributions to ecological restoration and its impacts on the La Crosse community, statewide and across the nation. As Leopold taught us, we all have a moral commitment to protect the natural resources in our communities.



Dave Duax Bipartisanship Award

For the second year in a row, I was honored to be recognized by Fierce Freedom as a legislator who can work effectively across the aisle. I traveled to Eau Claire Thursday evening to receive the Dave Duax Award for Bipartisanship. Thank you!




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