Monday, February 10, 2020

Don't Forget to Vote Tuesday, February 18!

Wisconsin's Spring Primary is quickly approaching and will take place on Tuesday, February 18, 2020. 

The State Supreme Court race is the only statewide race on the ballot. The top two vote-getters will advance to the general election.  There are also many local races as well as a Republican primary between State Senator Tom Tiffany and veteran Jason Church  for the special election being held in the 7th Congressional District. 

To see what races will be on your ballot and for all of the other information you need to vote, please visit: https://myvote.wi.gov/en-US/PreviewMyBallot 

State Supreme Court Race Preview

Incumbent Daniel Kelly is facing two challengers, Jill Karofsky and Edward Fallone. The two candidates who get the most votes on February 18 will advance to the general election on April 7. 

Daniel Kelly (Incumbent):  Justice Kelly was appointed to the Wisconsin Supreme Court by Governor Walker in 2016 after Justice David Prosser retired before the end of his term. Before being appointed to the Supreme Court, he spent 20 years in private practice and also worked as a special prosecutor for the Milwaukee County District Attorney's Office. You can view his campaign website here: https://www.justicedanielkelly.com/

Jill Karofsky:  Karofsky is a trial court judge. She was previously the Executive Director of the Wisconsin Office of Crime Victim Services and an Assistant Attorney General.                You can view her campaign website here: https://www.jillforjustice.com/

Edward Fallone:  Fallone spent 25 years teaching at the Marquette University School of Law. He also helped found a patient advocacy group called Stem Cell Now.                       You can view his campaign website here:https://www.falloneforjustice.com/





Sunday, February 2, 2020

Public Hearing Scheduled on Dyslexia Training Requirement

The package of dyslexia bills that WEMTA has been monitoring has been scheduled for a public hearing on Thursday, February 6 at 9 a.m. before the Assembly Committee on Education.  

This includes Assembly Bill 601, which requires all school district staff to take an online dyslexia awareness training starting in the 2020-2021 school year. The training would be developed by the Department of Public Instruction and the International Dyslexia Association–Wisconsin Branch, Inc.

If you have concerns about this proposal, you can contact your state representative and state senator. 


Sunday, January 26, 2020

Public Hearing Scheduled on Teacher Shortage Bill

The Senate Committee on Government Operations, Technology and Consumer Protection is holding a public hearing on Senate Bill 612 on January 29 at the State Capitol. This legislation seeks to address the teacher workforce shortage. It would allow retired teachers (or other WRS retirees) to return to work without suspending their WRS retirement payments for up to 36 months. The bill also increases the WRS retirement age to 59.5 years old (this change would first apply to individuals who are currently under the age of 40).

Senate
PUBLIC HEARING
Committee on Government Operations, Technology and Consumer Protection
The committee will hold a public hearing on the following items at the time specified below:
Wednesday, January 29, 2020
10:30 AM
330 Southwest
Senate Bill 519
Relating to: designating Colby as the state cheese.
By Senator Bernier; cosponsored by Representatives Kulp, Edming, James, Rohrkaste, Bowen, VanderMeer, B. Meyers and Allen.
Senate Bill 641
Relating to: requiring a supermajority county board vote to enact ordinances that affect only towns.
By Senators Bernier, Stroebel, Nass and Jacque; cosponsored by Representatives Plumer, Novak, Felzkowski, Quinn, Steffen, Wichgers, Kulp, Magnafici, Tusler, Edming, Spiros and Schraa.
Senate Bill 690
Relating to: biennial reports regarding fees charged by executive state agencies.
By Senators Bernier and Stroebel; cosponsored by Representatives Allen, Steffen, Kulp, Ramthun, Brooks, Dittrich, Wichgers, Knodl, Tusler and Gundrum.
Senate Bill 612
Relating to: increasing the minimum retirement age under the Wisconsin Retirement System; decreasing the minimum break in service for annuitants in the Wisconsin Retirement System who are rehired by a participating employer; and allowing rehired annuitants to elect to not participate in the Wisconsin Retirement System.
By Senators Stroebel and Petrowski; cosponsored by Representatives Felzkowski, Katsma, Dittrich, Edming, Krug, L. Myers, Quinn, Rohrkaste, Snyder and Wichgers.
Senate Bill 635
Relating to: requiring hospitals to have a policy requiring written and verbal informed consent before a medical student may perform a pelvic exam on a patient who is under general anesthesia or otherwise unconscious. - 2 -

By Senators Jacque, L. Taylor and Schachtner; cosponsored by Representatives Brandtjen, C. Taylor, Sargent, Shankland, Allen, Anderson, Billings, Brostoff, Considine, Dittrich, Emerson, Horlacher, Kerkman, Rodriguez, Sinicki, Skowronski, Spreitzer, Stubbs, Subeck, Thiesfeldt, Tusler and Wichgers.
We intend to take the bills up in the order they are listed. To accomodate other legislative meetings the order of bills may be adjusted during the hearing.
________________________


Wednesday, January 22, 2020

Sen. Ringhand and Rep. Spreitzer Holding a Joint Listening Session


Senator Janis Ringhand (D-Evansville) and Representative Mark Spreitzer (D-Beloit) are holding a joint listening session on Tuesday, February 4 in Brodhead. 
This is a great opportunity for WEMTA members who live in this area to discuss school library and technology issues with their lawmakers. 
To see if you live in one of these district, use the "Who Are My Legislators?" tab on the Wisconsin State Legislature's homepage: https://legis.wisconsin.gov/ 

Brodhead Area Listening Session
When: Tuesday, February 4 from 5:30-6:30 p.m. 
Where: Brodhead Public Library, Program Room
 1207 25th St, Brodhead, WI 53520




Tuesday, January 21, 2020

Public Hearing on Dyslexia Bills Scheduled


The Senate Committee on Universities, Technical Colleges, Children and Families is holding a public hearing on two of the Dyslexia package bills on Wednesday, January 22.

SB 578 requires school boards starting in the 2020-21 school year to assess students in 4 year-old kindergarten to second grade on literary fundamentals. The assessment selected by the school district must include phonological and phonemic awareness, rapid automatized naming, letter-word reading and picture-naming vocabulary.   It also requires schools to provide a voluntary questionnaire about reading difficulties in the student’s family history.

SB 579 requires each CESA to employ a dyslexia specialist who has at least 5 years of experience in screening, identifying, and treating dyslexia and related conditions.

Senate
PUBLIC HEARING
Committee on Universities, Technical Colleges, Children and Families
The committee will hold a public hearing on the following items at the time specified below:
Wednesday, January 22, 2020
9:30 AM
412 East
Time restrictions will be imposed to allow for a high volume of testimony. The committee will adjourn no later than 5 pm to account for the State of the State Address.
Holton Sr., Douglas A.
Of Milwaukee, as a Public Member on the Wisconsin Technical College System Board, to serve for the term ending May 1, 2025.
Assembly Bill 47
Relating to: guardianships of children.
By Joint Legislative Council.
Senate Bill 609
Relating to: qualified residential treatment programs, providing an exemption from rule-making procedures, and granting rule-making authority.
By Senators Darling, Johnson, Bewley, Olsen, Wanggaard and Ringhand; cosponsored by Representatives Ballweg, Billings, Bowen, Considine, Emerson, Horlacher, Krug, Ohnstad, Ramthun, Snyder, Spreitzer, Stubbs, Tittl, Tusler and Dittrich.
Senate Bill 668
Relating to: immunity from liability resulting from good faith actions under the child abuse and neglect reporting law.
By Senators Darling and Johnson; cosponsored by Representatives Ballweg and Billings.
Senate Bill 610
Relating to: disclosure of child abuse and neglect reports and records.
By Senators Testin and Wanggaard; cosponsored by Representatives Snyder, Krug, James, Kulp, Ramthun, Tusler and Skowronski. - 2 -

Senate Bill 343
Relating to: University of Wisconsin System resident undergraduate tuition.
By Senator Jacque; cosponsored by Representatives Murphy, Pronschinske, Kerkman, Felzkowski, Ramthun and Zimmerman.
Senate Bill 578
Relating to: assessments to evaluate reading readiness.
By Senators Bernier and Carpenter; cosponsored by Representatives Kulp, Bowen, Dittrich, Kitchens, Krug, Murphy, Mursau, L. Myers, Quinn, Ramthun, Skowronski, Tusler and Wittke.
Senate Bill 579
Relating to: requiring each cooperative educational service agency to employ a dyslexia specialist.
By Senator Bernier; cosponsored by Representatives Kulp, Bowen, Kitchens, Krug, Murphy, Mursau, Ramthun, Skowronski, Tusler, Wichgers and Wittke.
Senate Bill 403
Relating to: free expression within the University of Wisconsin System, providing an exemption from rule-making procedures, and granting rule-making authority.
By Senators Kapenga, Stroebel, Bernier, Craig and Olsen; cosponsored by Representatives Horlacher, Vos, Murphy, Allen, Brandtjen, Dittrich, Duchow, Edming, Felzkowski, Gundrum, James, Katsma, Kitchens, Knodl, Krug, Kuglitsch, Kulp, Macco, Magnafici, Quinn, Ramthun, Rohrkaste, Skowronski, Sortwell, Steffen, Tauchen, Thiesfeldt and Tusler.
________________________
Senator Dale Kooyenga
Chair



Thursday, January 9, 2020

Senate Committee Holding Hearing on BCPL Bill


The Senate Committee on Government Operations, Technology and Consumer Protection has scheduled a public hearing on January 14 on AB 49, which is one of the Study Committee bills related to the BCPL. AB 49 would give SWIB the ability to invest Common School Fund dollars in the same manner as BCPL in the event that BCPL chooses to delegate some investment authority to SWIB.


Senate
PUBLIC HEARING
Committee on Government Operations, Technology and Consumer Protection
The committee will hold a public hearing on the following items at the time specified below:
Tuesday, January 14, 2020
1:01 PM
201 Southeast
Assembly Bill 49
Relating to: the authority of the Board of Commissioners of Public Lands to delegate authority to invest trust fund moneys and making an appropriation.
By Joint Legislative Council.
Senate Bill 561
Relating to: distribution of the aid payment for personal property upon termination of a tax incremental district.
By Senators Bernier, Ringhand, Marklein, Stroebel, L. Taylor and Wanggaard; cosponsored by Representatives Steffen, Macco, Ohnstad, Bowen, Fields, Gundrum, Kolste, Murphy, Novak, Skowronski, Spreitzer, Subeck, Tusler, VanderMeer, Vruwink and Dittrich.
Senate Bill 614
Relating to: licensure of local organizations to conduct raffles.
By Senators Kapenga, Darling, Jacque, Kooyenga, Olsen, Stroebel and Wanggaard; cosponsored by Representatives Allen, Dittrich, Duchow, Gundrum, Horlacher, Magnafici, Mursau, Quinn and Tusler.
Senate Bill 172
Relating to: the use of billboards to recruit Department of Corrections employees.
By Senators Wanggaard, L. Taylor, Cowles, Olsen and Smith; cosponsored by Representatives Bowen, Schraa, L. Myers, Mursau, Dittrich, Haywood, Zimmerman, Crowley, Kulp, Edming, Brooks, Thiesfeldt, Rohrkaste, Snyder, Stubbs, Brandtjen, Duchow, Steffen, Knodl, Sinicki, Rodriguez, Ohnstad, Goyke, Ramthun, Pronschinske, Spreitzer and Skowronski.
Senate Bill 613
Relating to: repossession of collateral or leased goods.



Monday, December 2, 2019

Package of Dyslexia Legislation Introduced

An eight-bill package of dyslexia legislation has recently been introduced by State Representative Bob Kulp (R-Stratford) and State Senators Steve Nass (R-Whitewater) and Kathleen Bernier (R-Chippewa Falls). One of the bills would require school employees to take a continuing education course on dyslexia awareness. No action has been taken on any of these bills at this time. 

Grants for Teachers: Assembly Bill 595/Senate Bill 555 expands the Master Educator Grant program to provide grants to teachers who earn dyslexia-related certifications from the Academy of Orton-Gillingham Practitioners and Educators, or the Center for Effective Reading Instruction or Academic Language Therapy Association.
  
Teacher Preparatory Program Requirements:  Assembly Bill 594/Senate Bill 554 requires each teacher preparatory program located in Wisconsin to provide at least 6 credits of instruction in literacy theory, skills, and processes that align with the most recent Knowledge and Practice Standards for Teachers of Reading from the International Dyslexia Association to individuals in the program who intend to apply for a license to teach grades kindergarten to 5 or special education, a license as a reading teacher or a license as a reading specialist.

Screening Correctional Inmates for Dyslexia: Assembly Bill 602/Senate Bill 553 requires the Department of Corrections to test the reading ability of each prisoner and screen each prisoner for dyslexia within six months of confinement in prison.

Publishing Foundations of Reading Test Scores: Assembly Bill 603/Senate Bill 569 requires the Department of Public Instruction to annually publish Foundations of Reading test scores.

Programs to Identify and Address Pupils with Dyslexia in Public Schools: Assembly Bill 604/Senate Bill 571 requires Wisconsin school boards to develop or adopt programs to identify and address pupils with dyslexia.

Online Dyslexia Awareness Training for Licensed School District Employees: Assembly Bill 601/Senate Bill 552 requires all district staff to take an online dyslexia awareness training starting in the 2020-2021 school year. The training would be developed by the Department of Public Instruction and the International Dyslexia Association–Wisconsin Branch, Inc.

CESA Dyslexia Specialist: Assembly Bill 635/Senate Bill 579 requires each CESA to employ a dyslexia specialist who has at least 5 years of experience in screening, identifying, and treating dyslexia and related conditions.

Reading Readiness Assessments: Assembly Bill 632Senate Bill 578 requires school boards starting in the 2020-21 school year to assess students in 4 year-old kindergarten to second grade on literary fundaments. The assessment selected by the school district must include phonological and phonemic awareness, rapid automatized naming, letter-word reading and picture-naming vocabulary.   It also requires schools to provide a voluntary questionnaire about reading difficulties in the student’s family history.