Wisconsin

Voters, Courts Slowly Taking Redistricting Power from Lawmakers | 11-16-2018

While Congressional and state legislative races drew most of the attention on Election Day, those races were hardly the only critical issues voters would decide. Missouri, Colorado and Michigan became the latest states to endorse independent commissions...

Democrats Gain in State Elections | 11-09-2018

Buoyed by the votes of suburban women and independents, Democrats gained hard-won ground in the nation’s statehouses in Tuesday’s midterm election. Democrats won seven governorships and six legislative chambers previously held...

Walker Loss Unlikely to Kill WI Foxconn Deal | 11-09-2018

His controversial deal with Chinese manufacturing company FoxConn might have helped skewer Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker’s (R) bid for a third term, but it seems unlikely that Gov.-elect Tony Evers (D) will be able to stop it from continuing forward...

That Done Bit Him on the Backside | 11-09-2018

John Lennon fans likely recall a song he did called “Instant Karma.” Well, some karma of the fairly-immediate variety jumped up and bit Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker square in the fanny last week. As CBS News reports , Walker lost his bid on...

More Democratic Women Candidates Than Republican Ones in Most States | 11-02-2018

Of the 3,388 women running for legislative office in 46 states this year, 70 percent are Democrats. In 19 of those states, there are about twice as many Democratic female candidates as Republican ones. In 15 states, there are three times more. In five...

Health & Science - November 5 2018 | 11-02-2018

Federal officials approve changes to the WISCONSIN Medicaid plan that will require recipients to work at least 80 hours per month or participate in job training, volunteer community service or a qualified work program to maintain eligibility for the program...

Democrats Seem Poised for State Election Gains | 10-19-2018

The pendulum of politics that in many states has swung Republican for the last eight years appears to be heading in a Democratic direction in the Nov. 6 midterm elections. Nonpartisan analysts and pollsters give Democrats a solid chance to win nine...

Sizable Statehouse Gains Possible for Dems in November | 10-19-2018

If the November election holds to the usual pattern for the first midterm election of a new presidency, Democrats could win control of nine legislative chambers in seven states, according to Tim Storey of the National Conference of State Legislatures...

States Seek to Maintain Net Neutrality | 10-12-2018

At least 32 states have introduced legislation this year that would require internet service providers to uphold net neutrality principles, according to analysis by the National Conference of State Legislatures and LexisNexis State Net . Many of those...

Baker Remains Most Popular Governor | 10-12-2018

For the seventh quarter in a row, polling by Morning Consult shows that the ten most popular governors in America are all Republicans. Massachusetts Gov. Charlie Baker topped the list with a 70 percent approval rating, followed closely by Maryland Gov...

Youth Shall Be Served | 10-05-2018

Much has been made of the number of women running for state or federal office this year, but the ladies aren’t the only group of traditionally underrepresented folks making a run this year. As the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel reports , the younger...

‘Lockbox’ Measures Little Help With Long-Term Transportation Funding | 09-07-2018

In November Connecticut voters will consider the Connecticut Transportation Revenue Lockbox Amendment, which would bar lawmakers from using the state’s transportation fund for non-transportation-related purposes. If the ballot measure is approved...

Budgets in Brief - September 10 2018 | 09-07-2018

STATES AWARDED MILLIONS IN ACA LAWSUIT A federal court in TEXAS ruled that the federal government improperly charged several states millions of dollars in state Medicaid fees that provide funding for the Affordable Care Act. Under the terms of the...

Slow Progress on Public Pension Reform | 08-17-2018

The economy is on a tear, with the national growth rate high and unemployment low. Eighty percent of U.S. companies have reported earnings that exceed Wall Street forecasts. City and state revenues are surging, as the Great Recession fades in the rear...

WI Trying New Bridge Replacement Program | 08-17-2018

For years, a lack of state funding has forced delays of bridge replacement projects in Wisconsin. But the state’s Department of Transportation, or WisDOT, has launched a new program to address that problem. Under the program, called “Replace...

Primary Elections Held in Four States | 08-17-2018

Four states – Connecticut, Minnesota, Vermont, and Wisconsin – held primary elections on Aug. 14. In the Democratic primaries, one of the major Election Day themes was diversity. In Connecticut, Democrats nominated Jahana Hayes, a teacher...

Budgets in Brief - July 16 2018 | 07-13-2018

TRUCKING INDUSTRY SUES RI OVER NEW TOLL SYSTEM The American Trucking Association and three companies - MASSACHUSETTS -based, convenience-store chain Cumberland Farms; MASSACHUSETTS -based cargo carrier M&M Transport Services; and NEW JERSEY -based...

Straws Latest Flashpoint in Battle Over Plastics | 06-29-2018

Today, a visitor to a Bon Appétit cafe will have no problem finding plenty of tasty things to nosh on. But finding a plastic straw for their soda or a plastic stirrer for their coffee will soon be impossible. San Francisco-based Bon Appétit...

Govs Differ on Border Separations | 06-29-2018

The ongoing controversy over family separations at the U.S. border with Mexico has spurred a bipartisan group of governors to pull back or reject outright President Trump’s request to send National Guard troops to the U.S. border with Mexico. Democrats...

Health & Science - July 2 2018 | 06-29-2018

MA House Approves HB 4664 The MASSACHUSETTS House approves HB 4664 , a bill that would ban the use of so-called conversion therapy, a controversial practice aimed at changing the sexual orientation and gender identity of minors. It moves to the Senate...

Will State Elections Bring Statehouses Closer to Balance? | 06-15-2018

Lauren Arthur is not a household word, except perhaps in the neighborhood of suburban Kansas City, Missouri, where she lives. But Arthur, who on June 5 won a special election to fill a vacancy in the Missouri state senate, epitomizes the high hopes of...

State Legislative Chambers Vulnerable to Democratic Wave Election | 06-15-2018

In a normal wave election - which is typical of the first midterm election of a new president - the party out of power picks up six to eight state legislative chambers. A normal wave in November could give Democrats control of both chambers in Arizona...

Trump and Women Continue to Figure Prominently in State Primaries | 06-15-2018

Last Tuesday, primary elections were held in four states - Maine, Nevada South Carolina and Virginia - and a special election was held in Wisconsin. Support for President Trump continued to be a key factor in GOP primaries. Corey Stewart eked out...

Half of States Have Considered Internet Privacy Bills in 2017-18 | 06-08-2018

At least 27 states have considered but only two, Oregon and Virginia, have passed legislation dealing with internet privacy in the current session, according to information compiled from the National Conference of State Legislatures and LexisNexis State...

Reinsurance Programs Catching On in States | 05-11-2018

Since 2016 at least 19 states have introduced and 9 have enacted legislation creating a state reinsurance program and/or authorizing the state to apply for a State Innovation Waiver under Section 1332 of the Affordable Care Act to obtain federal funding...

States Return to Reinsurance to Stabilize ACA Marketplaces | 05-11-2018

Soaring premiums and declining insurer participation in the health insurance marketplaces states set up in accordance with the Affordable Care Act have been among the most common complaints about the federal healthcare law. To address those issues states...

Health & Science - May 14 2018 | 05-11-2018

NH House Approves SB 313 The NEW HAMPSHIRE House approves SB 313 , which would expand Medicaid eligibility to cover an additional 50,000 residents. It has returned to the Senate (UNION LEADER [MANCHESTER]). CO House Approves HB 1436 The COLORADO...

Squawk Box | 04-20-2018

If you happen to live in the tiny Wisconsin town of Winneconne, you are probably used to sedate, uneventful elections. Alas, that might not be the case this November. As the AP reports , an as-yet-unnamed resident has asked for permission to bring three...

Business - April 23 2018 | 04-20-2018

CA Senate Rejects SB 827 The CALIFORNIA Senate Committee on Transportation and Housing rejects SB 827 , which would have forced cities to allow taller, denser development around public transit (CAL MATTERS [SACRAMENTO]). WI Governor Signs AB 771...

Health & Science - April 23 2018 | 04-20-2018

Going On In MD A federal appeals court strikes down MARYLAND’s first-in-the-nation prescription drug price gouging law. The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit said in a 2-to-1 ruling that the 2017 law violates the commerce clause of...

Social Policy - April 16 2018 | 04-13-2018

AZ House Approves SB 1394 The ARIZONA House approves SB 1394 , a bill that would require Grand Canyon State hospitals and clinics to ask patients the reason they are seeking an abortion. The measure returns to the Senate (ARIZONA CAPITOL TIMES [PHOENIX...

Governors in Brief - April 9 2018 | 04-05-2018

WALKER SIGNS OFF ON CLOSURE OF WI YOUTH PRISON : After years of accusations of ongoing abuse and neglect of its inhabitants, the lone WISCONSIN prison complex for teen offenders is now set to shut its doors for good. Gov. Scott Walker (R) signed bipartisan...

Politics in Brief - April 9 2018 | 04-05-2018

FBI NABS AL LAWMAKER IN CORRUPTION STING : FBI agents arrested longtime ALABAMA Rep. Jack Williams, former state GOP Chairman Marty Connors and Trina Healthcare CEO Ford Gilbert last Monday on corruption charges. Gilbert is accused of devising a scheme...

Social Policy - April 9 2018 | 04-05-2018

HI Senate Approves HB 2739 The HAWAII Senate gives final approval to HB 2739 , a bill that would allow Aloha State doctors to help terminally ill patients to end their own lives. It is now with Gov. David Ige (D), who has said he will sign it into...

Many States Considering Bans on Pharmacy ‘Gag Clauses’ | 03-30-2018

As of March 22, at least 27 states had introduced bills this year prohibiting pharmaceutical benefit manager (PBM) or health insurer contracts that prevent pharmacists from informing customers about alternatives to medications they’ve been prescribed...

Walker Signs Off on WI School Safety Plan | 03-30-2018

In the wake of the deadly school shootings around the nation, Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker (R) signed a $100 million school safety package last week that will allow Badger State school districts to apply for grants to pay for safety upgrades. Walker...

WI Gov Calls Special Election After Series of Court Defeats | 03-30-2018

Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker (R) called for a special election on June 12 to fill vacancies in the state Legislature created when two GOP lawmakers joined his administration in December. That action only came after three separate court rulings in a single...

Health & Science - April 2 2018 | 03-30-2018

IA Senate Approves SF 2349 The IOWA Senate gives final approval to SF 2349 , which would allow insurance carriers to resume selling small-employer policies that don’t meet Affordable Care Act rules, such as those requiring coverage for maternity...

The Rewards and Perils of Redistricting | 03-16-2018

In democracies, voters are supposed to choose their legislative representatives. Increasingly, however, U.S. courts have found that representatives choose their voters through partisan gerrymandering of legislative and congressional districts. With...

Budgets in Brief - March 19 2018 | 03-16-2018

POT LEGALIZATION HAS POSITIVE IMPACT ON CO COUNTY: A study by researchers at COLORADO State University-Pueblo found that the marijuana industry had a net positive impact of over $35 million on Pueblo County in 2016, despite increasing costs for law...

Politics in Brief - March 5 2018 | 03-02-2018

UT LAWMAKERS CONSIDER LIMITING LOBBYING BY PUBLIC EMPLOYEES: A UTAH House committee voted this month to advance a bill ( HB 391 ) restricting lobbying of the Legislature by state employees and prohibiting some state entities from taking a public position...

Environment - March 5 2018 | 03-02-2018

WI Senate Approves AB 547 The WISCONSIN Senate approves AB 547 , which would limit regulations designed to avoid or minimize construction on wetlands. It moves to Gov. Scott Walker (R), who is expected to sign it into law (MILWAUKEE JOURNAL-SENTINEL...

Health & Science - March 5 2018 | 03-02-2018

IN House Approves SB 52 The INDIANA House approves SB 52 , a bill that would legalize the use of low-level THC cannabis oil, which is used to treat some seizure disorders. It returns to the Senate (INDIANAPOLIS STAR). WI Governor Signs SB 770 ...

Social Policy - March 5 2018 | 03-02-2018

GA Senate Approves SB 375 The GEORGIA Senate approves SB 375 , which would bar same-sex couples from adopting children in the Peach State. It is now in the House (ATLANTA JOURNAL CONSTITUTION). WI Senate Approves AB 128 The WISCONSIN Senate approves...

WI Lawmakers Endorse Walker ACA Change | 02-16-2018

Wisconsin lawmakers approved Gov. Scott Walker’s (R) plan to mitigate rising health insurance premiums by implementing a reinsurance plan similar to that in place in a handful of other states. Under that proposal, the state would pay as much as...

Budgets in Brief - February 12 2018 | 02-09-2018

WI GOV OPEN TO GAS TAX: WISCONSIN Gov. Scott Walker (R) said last week he was willing to raise the state’s gas tax to provide additional funding for transportation, as long as the tax increase was offset by other tax cuts. His statement came...

Dems Pick UP GOP Seat in WI Senate | 01-19-2018

Democrat Patty Schachtner defeated Wisconsin state Rep. Adam Jarchow (R) in a special election last Tuesday to claim the Senate seat in the state’s 10th District held for 17 years by former Sen. Sheila Harsdorf (R), who took a job in the administration...

Environment - December 18 2018 | 12-15-2017

WI GOVERNOR SIGNS AB 499 WISCONSIN Gov. Scott Walker (R) signs AB 499 , which overturns a law that essentially barred mining for any minerals in the Badger State other than iron ore. Under that law, a mining company seeking to extract minerals other...

Politics in Brief - December 18 2017 | 12-15-2017

SCOTUS AGREES TO HEAR SECOND REDISTRICTING CASE: The U.S. Supreme Court has agreed to hear a redistricting case from MARYLAND involving Republican voters’ claim that the congressional districts drawn by the state’s Democrat-controlled General...

2018: A Year of Living Dangerously | 12-15-2017

The shadow of President Donald Trump and the Republican tax bill will hover over state governing bodies in 2018, a year of midterm elections that Tim Storey, political analyst for the National Conference of State Legislatures, says will be “a referendum...