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


March for Music: Fun 5K Run

Saturday, June 17

9 a.m. - 11 a.m.

Myrick Park



Juneteenth Citywide Celebration

Sunday, June 18

12 p.m. - 3 p.m.

Southside Neighborhood Center &

Poage Park



Many Peoples, One Place

Tuesday, June 20

12 p.m. - 1 p.m.

Riverside Museum



River City Water Ski Show

Wednesday, June 21

(recurring every Wed. until August)

7 p.m. - 8:30 p.m.

La Crosse Regional Airport





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


(608) 266-5780
Toll Free:

(888) 534-0095

Friends and Neighbors,


Several controversial bills passed the Wisconsin State Assembly this week, including three pieces of legislation that call for a constitutional convention under Article V of the U.S. Constitution for the purposes of proposing amendments. One of the these bills - Assembly Joint Resolution 21 - specifically called for a balanced budget amendment to be introduced via such a convention.


I voted against all three of these bills due to concerns that a constitutional convention runs the risk of becoming uncontrollable, thus making the Constitution vulnerable to major changes to our most fundamental rights. As for the balanced budget amendment, I certainly believe we should strive to balance our budget, but do not think it is prudent to not allow for flexibility and access to additional funds should a national emergency come up that needs to be immediately addressed. Click here to read my full statement on this legislation.


The Assembly will also convene next Wednesday, June 21, when we will have a long calendar of bills including AB 299, the bill seeking to sanction free speech on our UW campuses. Additionally, AB 260, a bill that seeks to allow chiropractors to perform pre-practice athletic physicals for students, will be taken up on the floor. You can watch the Assembly session live on Wisconsin Eye.


In other news, after receiving compelling information from Mayor Tim Kabat and the Mississippi River Cities and Towns Initiative on the negative economic and environmental ramifications of withdrawing from the Paris Agreement, I co-authored a letter sent to Gov. Scott Walker urging him to commit Wisconsin to a state-based plan to fight climate change. I think it's important to work with local officials on the issues like this that affect our community. You can read my official statement here.


As always, if you have any questions or concerns regarding pending legislation, the state budget, or any other issue, feel free to contact my office by calling (608) 266-5780 or emailing me at


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


Best Wishes,

Jill Billings
State Representative
95th Assembly District

Budget Update

The Joint Committee on Finance met yesterday, June 15, with the big agenda items being the budgets for the Group Insurance Board (GIB) and the Department of Corrections (DOC). Below are highlights from this meeting:

  • JFC members unanimously voted to reject the governor's proposal to move to a self-insurance model for state employees. I have heard from a number of constituents who were against this proposal. I share these concerns and am relieved to see a proposal that threatened access and quality of care be removed from the state budget. In the same motion, the JFC also voted to add legislative appointees to the GIB; all current members are appointed by the governor. Moreover, the motion requires any health insurance changes to be approved by JFC.

  • As for the Department of Corrections, JFC members voted to expand the Earned Release Program and provide additional mental health staff at four correctional facilities. Additionally, the JFC approved a provision for funding body-worn cameras for correctional officers to increase accountability. The JFC also voted to open new health services units at three correctional institutions and develop an alcohol abuse treatment program.

Upcoming JFC meetings have yet to be scheduled, but the committee's co-chairs told reporters they hope to reconvene next week. As expected, they also said they predict the transportation budget will be the most contentious budget item. On the other hand, the co-chairs said they are much closer to working out the education budget.

You can always watch live streams of all the hearings by tuning in to Wisconsin Eye.




WisCorps Crew Kick-Off

Today, I spoke at the WisCorps crew kick-off event to celebrate the summer crews as they embark on a variety of projects in Wisconsin and the Upper Midwest. All projects focus on conservation and revitalization of communities.

A total of eight crews set off on their projects today, each of which is comprised of six to eight young adults and one or two crew leaders. Their work will span all corners of the state, with several crews working on projects right here in La Crosse. The WisCorps members are paid a stipend and, although they are not volunteers, their work gives back to their communities and our state's wonderful natural resources.

I was honored to be able to send these crews off and look forward to all the good work they will do to make our community even better.




Celebrating June Dairy Month

The dairy industry makes up a significant portion of Wisconsin's economy and contributes to our state identity. To honor the industry and the farmers who work hard every day to produce quality dairy products, more than 70 events will be held statewide this month. These events will give an opportunity for attendees to meet dairy farmers, tour their barns, and try delicious homemade food.

In celebration of our dairy farmers, I am looking forward to attending the La Crosse County Dairy Breakfast tomorrow. You can learn more about this event by clicking here.




Safety Tips for Hot, Humid Weather

As we endure the season's first surges of hot, humid weather in Wisconsin, the Department of Health and Human Services and Ready Wisconsin hope to remind Wisconsinites of a few heat-related preparation tips. First, remember to stay cool and hydrated, staying in air-conditioned buildings as much as possible and drinking plenty of water. Second, remember to never leave people or pets in parked cars; temperatures in cars can become life-threatening in minutes, even with the windows open. Finally, those most vulnerable to heat include very young children, the elderly, and people with heart disease or high blood pressure, so remember to check on family, friends, and neighbors without air conditioning or those who spend much of their time alone.

Between 2011 and 2015, there were 48 heat-related deaths in the state of Wisconsin, and as temperatures continue to rise, it is more important than ever to take the proper steps to prepare and protect our communities. To learn more about heat-related dangers, visit Ready Wisconsin  or the Department of Health Services for health and safety tips.

You can always watch live streams of all the hearings by tuning in to Wisconsin Eye.



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