As we await the release of a proposal on school safety from Governor Walker and legislative leaders, there is disagreement between the Senate and Assembly GOP majorities on how to take up school safety legislation. The gist of it is this: if the school safety legislation is taken up in a special session, that is the only legislation that can be debated. If it is taken up as a part of the ongoing regular session, any other bills that are still alive can also be taken up at the same time. Continue reading Update on legislative action on school safety
As the 2017-18 Legislative Session winds down, the Wisconsin Assembly is scheduled to meet in floor session tomorrow to take up a full calendar of bills, including two K-12-related bills:
Assembly Bill 780—Notice to a school of a permanency review or hearing, notice to a school district of a foster home or group home license or out-of-home care placement, and transfer of pupil records. This bill changes the requirements for notifying schools in the process of placing a child in out-of-home care. It adds the child’s school to the list of entities that receive notice of the review or hearing on the child’s proposed permanency plan and that may have the opportunity to submit written comments to the court on the proposed plan, but may not otherwise participate in the review or appear at the hearing. AB 780 is is one of 13 bills developed the Task Force on Foster Care established last June by Assembly Speaker Robin Vos (R-Rochester). (See previous post.) Continue reading Full Assembly to take up two education bills on Feb.13
Assembly Republicans and Governor Walker have struck a deal on a proposal to provide taxpayers with a one-time tax credit of $100 per child and a one-time sales tax holiday for purchases of $100 or less. This agreement replaces an earlier plan proposed by the governor to create an ongoing, annual child tax credit.
While Republicans who firmly control the state Assembly are on board, the future of the proposal in the GOP-controlled state Senate, however, is uncertain.
According to Senate Majority Leader Scott Fitzgerald (R-Juneau), it’s unclear whether Senate Republicans will support it. Fitzgerald said he will discuss the proposal with his members Tuesday.
Late last month, the Task Force on Foster Care established in June by Assembly Speaker Robin Vos (R-Rochester) released a package of 13 draft bills intended to improve Wisconsin’s foster care system. The “Foster Forward” package is the result of six public hearings across the state and addresses four policy goals: Prevention Efforts, Improving the Child Welfare System, Support for Foster Care Providers, and Support for Foster Care Youth.
Several of those proposed bills are aimed at encouraging more families to sign up as foster parents, while other measures focus on preventing children from entering the foster care system. Speaker Vos says he aims for the full Assembly to take the package of bills up in January. Continue reading Bills to Improve State Foster Care System to Get Assembly Attention
The Blue Ribbon Commission on School Funding met for the first time yesterday (Dec. 14), holding an informational public hearing that featured presentations from the staff of the non-partisan Legislative Fiscal Bureau (LFB) as well as the Department of Public Instruction (DPI). Those presentations led to a lively question and answer session between presenters and Commission members.
The entire hearing was broadcast live on Wisconsin Eye, our state’s version of C-SPAN. A video recording of the entire hearing should be uploaded to the Wisconsin Eye website and available for viewing on Monday.
Assembly Speaker Robin Vos (R-Rochester) and Senate Majority Leader Scott Fitzgerald (R-Juneau), the leaders of each house of the Wisconsin Legislature, today announced the formation of a Blue Ribbon Commission on School Funding to be chaired by Sen. Luther Olsen (R-Ripon) and Rep. Joel Kitchens (R-Sturgeon Bay) (pictured at left from the Legislative Advocacy Conference). WASB Government Relations Director Dan Rossmiller has been appointed to the commission.
The press release announcing the formation of the commission indicates, “The commission will hold its first meeting this month. Beginning next year, the commission will travel around the state conducting public hearings to learn more about school funding issues in Wisconsin. Recommendations will be given to legislative leaders before the end of the session.” Continue reading Legislative Leaders Announce Blue Ribbon Commission on School Funding
The Wisconsin Legislature wrapped up its fall floor period last week. Lawmakers won’t return to the floor again until January. The fate of any number of bills may depend on how many proposals the houses want to tackle.
Assembly Speaker Robin Vos (R-Rochester) told WisPolitics.com late last week that he expects the Assembly to meet for two weeks in January and two weeks in February as well.
Senate Majority Leader Scott Fitzgerald (R-Juneau) said he expects the Senate to be in one day each in January, February and March. Continue reading Legislature Recesses Until January; Hopes Dim for Action on Sparsity Aid, Relief for Low-Revenue Districts