Brief

Evers signs bipartisan elections bills, vetoes paddlewheel gambling

By: - May 21, 2021 3:48 pm
Gov. Tony Evers gives his State of the State speech 1/12/21 (screenshot via YouTube)

Gov. Tony Evers

Gov. Tony Evers took out his pen and signed 16 bills into law Friday afternoon, and one bill met with a veto.

A few of the bills fell into the non-controversial election reform bills that made adjustments acceptable to both Republicans and Democrats. One allows 16- or 17-year-old students who are in a virtual or home school to serve as election inspectors so long as they have at least a 3.0 grade point or meet other standards. Particularly during the pandemic, poll workers have been difficult for many municipalities to find.

Another bipartisan election bill requires the Wisconsin Elections Commission to post the meetings from its minutes or hearings within 48 hours and include the full text of each motion the commission debates and votes on.

And a third new election law now requires clerks to widely spread news (on their websites and three areas within the jurisdiction) of an elected official declaring they won’t run for re-election by filing a non-candidacy report, or if an elected official who decides not to run fails to file a notice of non-candidacy.

Evers also vetoed a bill allowing licensed organizations to conduct a raffle on a paddlewheel over what he described as a prohibition in the Wisconsin Constitution against paddlewheel gambling. His veto message states that it is not really a raffle, but more like roulette, the only real difference being that one is vertical while the other is horizontal. He notes that tribal nations have exclusive rights to conduct Class III gaming in Wisconsin under tribal compacts, and expanding the definition of a raffle to include the paddlewheel device could also violate those compacts.

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Other bills Evers signed into law are as follows, as described by his office:

 

Senate Bill 51, now Wisconsin Act 32:

  • Makes several modifications to requirements for a newspaper to qualify to receive compensation for publishing legal notices.

Senate Bill 52, now Wisconsin Act 33:

  • Requires that if a current officeholder files a notification of noncandidacy or fails to file a notification of candidacy by the required deadline, the clerk with whom the candidacy is required to be filed must publish it on the clerk’s office or government body’s website or post it in at least three locations in the jurisdiction.

Senate Bill 105, now Wisconsin Act 35:

  • Changes certain definitions and aspects of administrative rules in the Wisconsin Department of Children and Families relating to commonly used child support formulas to reflect current practices; and
  • Eliminates future family support orders to align with federal law changes, with the exception of any divorce or separation instrument executed before Dec. 31, 2018.

Senate Bill 107, now Wisconsin Act 36:

  • Requires individuals directed under current law to participate in mediation or family court services pertaining to the placement of a child to submit a parenting plan prior to the initial mediation session; and
  • Adjusts the required content of that plan to no longer require the parties include what child support, family support, maintenance, or other income transfer there will be and how the child’s medical expenses will be paid.

Senate Bill 112, now Wisconsin Act 37:

  • Specifies that if a court grants less than 25 percent of physical placement to one parent in a temporary or final order legal custody and physical placement of a child, specific findings of fact must be entered as to the reason greater physical placement with that parent is not in the best interest of the child; and
  • Reorganizes the statutory best-interest factors, removing two considerations, including the stability in placement and availability of childcare services, and specifies that the factors for consideration are not necessarily in order of importance.

Senate Bill 208, now Wisconsin Act 38:

  • Requires the Wisconsin Elections Commission to post on their website draft minutes within 48 hours after a meeting or hearing and to post approved minutes within 48 hours after the commission approves the minutes; and
  • Requires the meeting minutes to include the full text of each motion debated and voted on by the commission.

Senate Bill 266, now Wisconsin Act 39:

  • Creates a definition of a racetrack grounds and allows the Department of Revenue to issue permits for the retail sale of alcohol beverages for consumption on racetrack grounds, excluding areas designated for camping;
  • Allows caterers to make retail sales of alcohol beverages on the racetrack grounds, excluding areas designated for camping; and
  • Defines a racetrack grounds as at least 300 acres containing a motor vehicle racetrack at least four miles long capable of hosting professional racing events.

Assembly Bill 18, now Wisconsin Act 40:

  • Modifies the current law to specify that any individual income taxpayer may file their return on or before the date established by federal law or administrative action by the Internal Revenue Service without incurring interest or penalties.

Assembly Bill 142, now Wisconsin Act 41:

  • Extends immunity for those reporting or investigating child abuse or neglect to any person assisting with medical examinations of a child or providing other assistance or information in an investigation or intervention.

Assembly Bill 143, now Wisconsin Act 42:

  • Allows the Department of Children and Families to certify residential care centers for children in out-of-home care to operate as “qualified residential treatment programs” (QRTPs);
  • Makes requirements for permanency planning and review of the permanency plans for continued placement in a QRTP; and
  • Requires the court to make several findings when it issues an order placing a child in a QRTP, following a required assessment.

Assembly Bill 277, now Wisconsin Act 43:

  • Authorizes the State Fair Park Board, in place of municipality, to issue and enforce Class “B” or “Class B” permits to allow the sale of alcoholic beverages at State Fair Park.

Senate Bill 168, now Wisconsin Act 44:

  • Allows a person to practice for up to 90 days a year as a physician for campers and staff at a recreational and educational camp licensed in this state if the person is licensed in good standing to practice medicine and surgery by another state or territory of the United States or a Canadian province or territory and is not under active investigation by a licensing authority or law enforcement authority in any state, federal, or foreign jurisdiction; and
  • Requires a person to submit a form to the Medical Examining Board before practicing as allowed under the bill.

Senate Bill 171, now Wisconsin Act 45:

  • Allows the Department of Agriculture, Trade, and Consumer Protection or the local health department may waive the routine inspection for not more than two out of every three license years if a recreational and educational camp has exhibited effective managerial control of public health hazards;
  • Provides that effective managerial control of public health hazards would be defined by department rule; and 
  • Requires that annual license fees and other applicable requirements still apply to the camp.

Assembly Bill 166, now Wisconsin Act 46:

  • Allows a person to practice for up to 90 days a year, without a temporary license from the state, as a registered nurse for campers and staff at a recreational and educational camp licensed in this state if the person is licensed in good standing to practice professional nursing by another state or territory of the United States or a Canadian province or territory and is not under active investigation by a licensing authority or law enforcement authority in any state, federal, or foreign jurisdiction; and 
  • Requires a person to submit a form to the Board of Nursing before practicing as a registered nurse as allowed under the bill.

Senate Bill 168, now Wisconsin Act 44:

  • Allows a person to practice for up to 90 days a year as a physician for campers and staff at a recreational and educational camp licensed in this state if the person is licensed in good standing to practice medicine and surgery by another state or territory of the United States or a Canadian province or territory and is not under active investigation by a licensing authority or law enforcement authority in any state, federal, or foreign jurisdiction; and
  • Requires a person to submit a form to the Medical Examining Board before practicing as allowed under the bill.

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Melanie Conklin
Melanie Conklin

Melanie Conklin is proud to be a native of the state of Wisconsin, which gave humankind the typewriter, progressivism and deep-fried cheese curds. Her several decades in journalism include political beats and columns at Isthmus newspaper, the Wisconsin State Journal and other publications. When not an ink-stained wretch, she served time inside state, local and federal government in communications. She is excited to be back at the craft of journalism as Deputy Editor of the Wisconsin Examiner. It’s what she’s loved ever since getting her master’s degree in journalism from the UW-Madison. Her family includes one husband, two kids, four dogs and five (or more) chinchillas.

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