Capitol Update

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Listening Sessions for Fall

Last week, I announced the opportunity to share your thoughts with me by completing my 2015 Legislative Survey.

In addition to the survey, I have also planned a series of 16 listening sessions for the 17th Senate District during the next month and I hope you will join me and my fellow legislators.

These sessions are designed for face-to-face sharing of ideas, concerns and input. As you arrive, please sign-in with a member of our team if you would like an opportunity to speak. For most sessions, we will provide five minutes per person for input. Depending on the attendance, we may offer additional speaking opportunities for attendees. Our moderator will work with attendees to ensure that everyone who would like to speak has an opportunity to do so in a respectful atmosphere.

If you prefer to share your thoughts in writing or have a specific question, please feel free to leave your comments with us or send an email to Sen.Marklein@legis.wisconsin.gov or PO Box 7882, Madison, WI 53707.

The schedule for our Fall Listening Sessions follows:

Monday, September 14, 2015 with Rep. Ed Brooks and Rep. Todd Novak
9-10 a.m.                        Reedsburg – Reedsburg Public Library, 370 Vine Street, Reedsburg
11:30 a.m. -12:30 p.m.    Plain – Green TTEC Building, 1110 Leed Parkway, Plain
1:30-2:30 p.m.                Spring Green – Spring Green Library, 230 E. Monroe Street, Spring Green

Monday, September 21, 2015 with Rep. Todd Novak
10:30-11:30 a.m.            Richland Center – Brewer Library, 325 N. Central Avenue, Richland Center
1:30-2:30 p.m.                Lone Rock – (pending approval) Community Hall, 220 Pearl Street, Lone Rock
3:30 - 4:30 p.m.              Boscobel – Boscobel Public Library, 1033 Wisconsin Ave., Boscobel

Monday, September 28, 2015
9-10 a.m.                        Fennimore – SWTC, 1800 Bronson Blvd, Fennimore
11 a.m. - 12 p.m.            Lancaster – Schreiner Public Library, 113 West Elm Street, Lancaster
1:30-2:30 p.m.                Bloomington – Bloomington Town Hall, 453 Canal Street, Bloomington

Friday, October 2, 2015 with Rep. Ed Brooks
9-10 a.m.                        Mauston – Mauston City Hall, 303 Mansion Street, Mauston
11 a.m. - 12 p.m.            Necedah – Necedah Memorial Library, 217 Oak Drive, Necedah
1:30-2:30 p.m.                Kendall – Kendall Village Hall, 219 W South Railroad Street, Kendall
3:30-4:30 p.m.                Elroy – Elroy Library, 501 2nd Main Street, Elroy

Friday, October 9, 2015 with Rep. Todd Novak
9-10 a.m.                        Dodgeville – Dodgeville City Hall, 100 E Fountain Street, Dodgeville
11:30 a.m. -12:30 p.m.   Argyle – Argyle Village Hall, 401 E. Milwaukee Street, Argyle
2-3 p.m.                         Monroe – Monroe City Hall, 1110 18th Ave., Monroe


Again, thank you for sharing your ideas via my legislative survey and for finding a time to visit with me at a listening session. I look forward to learning more about your ideas, preferences and seeking your input.

For more information and to connect with me, visit my website http://legis.wisconsin.gov/senate/17/marklein and do not hesitate to call 800-978-8008 if you have input, ideas or need assistance with any state-related matters.


Senator Marklein’s 2015 Fall Legislative Survey
If you haven’t had the chance to fill out my legislative survey yet, I encourage you to visit my website and click on the “2015 Legislative Survey” button: http://legis.wisconsin.gov/senate/17/marklein or please feel free to print out a copy from the link below and return it to me at PO Box 7882, Madison, WI 53703 or via fax at 608-282-3557. Please submit your survey by October 30, 2015.

For a PDF version of the survey, click here.


Senate Committee on Revenue, Financial Institutions, & Rural Issues
On Wednesday, the Senate Committee on Revenue, Financial Institutions, & Rural Issues met to discuss a number of bills. I am the author of two of these bills that directly impact our communities:

Senate Bill 227: Tax Exemption for Construction Materials

Under current law, counties, municipalities, school districts, and non-profit organizations are exempt from paying sales and use tax on the purchase of building materials. However, contractors who are hired to complete projects for these entities are not exempt in state law.

Under the current process, many contractors work with the municipal entity or school district to establish an LLC in order to circumvent the tax on the building materials. In other instances, the contractor will have the municipal entity or school district purchase the materials directly to avoid paying the sales and use tax.

I have authored a bill that would exempt building and construction materials from sales and excise taxes if the materials are used in a project for a school district, non-profit entity, municipality, or county. As we heard in testimony, the current law is an unnecessary administrative burden to our local units of government and contractors.

Senate Bill 236: The “Wine Walks” bill

Over the past decade, communities in Southwest and South Central Wisconsin have promoted businesses in their area by sponsoring events called Wine or Beer Walks. All of these areas are different, but, in general, they all have the same basic framework. During these events, the hosting organization, typically a Chamber of Commerce or Downtown Business Group, will purchase the wine or beer to be used at the participating businesses. Patrons of legal drinking age purchase a ticket from the hosting organization and are given a wine or beer glass. The patron can then walk to each business involved in the event and sample wine or beer while they are inside the business premises.

I authored this bill because in April 2015, the Wisconsin Department of Revenue specifically clarified that Wine Walk events have always been and are currently illegal. Wine Walks do not adhere to the current structure for a “Class B” picnic license. Our bill creates a new process specifically for Wine Walks that would allow a Wine Walk organization to assign multiple “Class B” Picnic alcohol licenses to participating businesses. There are Wine Walks that take place in the 17th senate district and they have been a great opportunity for local businesses and downtown areas.

*Representative Keith Ripp and Senator Howard Marklein testifying before the Senate Committee on Revenue, Financial Institutions and Rural Affairs on our bill legalizing Wine Walks in our communities


In the District


2015 Fall Hunting Begins
I turned the calendar. It is September and that means it’s time for fall hunting season to begin again. I have put up my tree stands and hope to spend a lot of time in the woods this fall.

Register Your Deer or Bear Online or Via Telephone in 2015!

For the first time in Wisconsin, hunters will be able to register harvested deer and bears via phone or Internet rather than taking the animal to an in-person registration station this fall. Wisconsin has successfully implemented electronic registration for turkey and geese and has now moved to accomplish the same for big game hunting.

During your hunt, attach and validate the carcass tag as you have in the past, then you have three options to register your deer or bear:

  • Phone: Dial 1-844-426-3734 (1-844-GAME-REG) and follow the prompts to provide harvest information and retrieve your 10-character confirmation code.

  • Online: On a computer or mobile device, go to gamereg.wi.gov and enter your harvest information and retrieve your 10-character confirmation code.

  • In person: Visit a designated in-person station that offers a phone or computer for hunters to register your deer or bear. Staff on site will be able to help you register and retrieve your 10-character confirmation code. Hunters may locate in-person stations prior to the start of the fall hunting seasons at http://prodoasext.dnr.wi.gov/inter1/pk_cwd_regpub$.startup.

When you register, you will receive a 10-character confirmation code which must be written on the carcass tag attached to the animal. All hunters must obtain a confirmation number and write it on the tag for the animal to be registered. Once you have completed this step, the animal will be officially registered and no further action is required.

The following dates are for upcoming hunting seasons that you might have a permit for in the 17th Senate District:


-Archery and Crossbow, Sept. 12 – Jan. 3, 2016

-Gun hunt for hunters with disabilities, Oct. 3 –11
-Youth deer hunt, Oct. 10 –11
-Gun, Nov. 21 – 29
-Muzzleloader, Nov. 30 – Dec. 9
-December 4-day antlerless hunt, Dec. 10 –13

Black Bear
*Application deadline for bear permits is always December 10
Zone C where dogs are not permitted
-With aid of bait and with all other legal methods not using dogs, Sept. 9 – Oct. 13

All other zones where dogs are permitted
-With aid of dogs only, Sept. 9 – 15
-With aid of dogs, with aid of bait, and with all other legal methods, Sept. 16 –Oct. 6
-With aid of bait and with all other legal methods not utilizing dogs, Oct. 7 – 13

*Source: Department of Natural Resources

Wild Turkey
-Statewide, Sept. 12 – Nov. 19
-Zones 1-5, Nov. 30 – Dec. 31

*Source: Department of Natural Resources


To find a complete list and to find out more information, the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources (DNR) has all of the current and upcoming hunting seasons on their website.

You can also print out a PDF version of the 2015 Wisconsin Hunting and Trapping Seasons.

Back to School
By now, most schools are back in session. It’s time to get back into the routine of getting the kids off to school and getting them home each night to do their homework or off to their sports practice.

It’s important to remember to take extra safety steps and precautions when it comes to bus safety and on the road safety. Early mornings especially, mean more fog on the roads and limited visibility.

This fall, Representative Travis Tranel and I are proposing legislation that would require the use of headlights in the rain when there is limited visibility. It’s a step in the right direction to continue safety on our roads.

I hope everyone had a great first week of school!

Helpful Information


Wisconsin Local Employment and Unemployment Estimates
The Department of Workforce Development (DWD) released the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics’ (BLS) estimates of unemployment and employment statistics for metro areas, major cities and counties in Wisconsin. The estimates include revisions for June 2015 and preliminary estimates for July 2015.

The following table shows the local unemployment rates from July 2014 and July 2015 for the counties in our district.






Grant 4.2 4.9
Green 3.6 4.4
Iowa 3.7 4.7
Juneau 4.8 6.3
Lafayette 3.7 4.2
Monroe 4.4 5.2
Richland 3.9 4.9
Sauk 3.7 4.6




*Source: Department of Workforce Development


*Senator Marklein is pleased to provide this legislative E-Update to the constituents of the 17th State Senate District. Please feel free to share this update with other interested citizens and taxpayers. You are receiving this update because you have either subscribed or contacted Senator Marklein directly.

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State Capitol - Room 8 South - Post Office Box 7882 - Madison, Wisconsin 53707 - Phone: (608) 266-0703