Hamilton Political Tidbits – August 4, 2017

Political Tidbits - August 4, 2017
Hamilton Consulting Group
 August 4, 2017
Wisconsin political news for clients and colleagues.
Competition is in the air in Madison, as athletes battle it out in the CrossFit games and legislative leaders continue to spar over the budget. This Tidbits covers how Foxconn legislation is affecting budget negotiations. Also in this edition: briefs are filed in two major cases and Walmart heads to Milwaukee to support Red Cross flood relief efforts. Scroll down for the results of the budget poll from the July 21 edition of Tidbits. 
If you wish to receive additional information about a topic addressed in Tidbits, please do not hesitate to contact a member of the Hamilton Consulting Team.

What Happens First: State Budget or Foxconn?

It was a big week for Wisconsin with the announcement of Foxconn's $10 billion investment in a new manufacturing facility in Wisconsin. The governor and Republican legislators were quick to deem the announcement as "transformational" and "historical", praising the potential investment and job creation with palpable excitement. Meanwhile, some Democrats voiced concerns over the overall cost of the incentive plan, a perception of how Foxconn treats employees, and the speedy legislative push to push the incentive package through.

While the Republican Senate and Assembly legislators seem to be on the same page regarding the content of the Foxconn economic package, the houses remain at odds over prioritizing the Foxconn bill before the completion of the 2017-19 state budget, which was due on July 1.

Bills of Note: Information Technology Manufacturing Zone (Foxconn Package)

On July 28, Gov. Scott Walker called for a special session of the legislature on economic development. More specifically, the special session was called for the legislature to take up the state's $3 billion Foxconn incentive package. The day prior, the governor entered a Memorandum of Understanding with Foxconn, with Foxconn committing to investing $10 billion in Wisconsin and creating up to 13,000 jobs. The state would provide up to $3 billion in incentives for the company.
After the call for a special session and the MOU was signed, August 2017 Special Session Assembly Bill 1 (AU7 AB 1) was introduced in the legislature. The Assembly referred the bill to the Committee on Jobs and the Economy and quickly held a public hearing on Thursday, Aug. 3. The bill has not been introduced in the Senate. Senate Majority Leader Scott Fitzgerald (R-Juneau) has stated he plans to route the bill to the Senate Finance Committee. The Senate's focus remains with finishing the 2017-19 state budget, leaving the two houses at odds over what to do first.

Great Lakes Legal Foundation Files Amicus Brief in Tetra Tech Case

This week, Great Lakes Legal Foundation (GLLF) filed an amicus brief with the Wisconsin Supreme Court in Tetra Tech Inc. v. Wisconsin Department of Revenue (DOR). The brief was filed on behalf of 11 Wisconsin associations, including Wisconsin Manufacturers and Commerce and Associated Builders and Contractors - Wisconsin Chapter.

State Files Opening Brief in SCOTUS Redistricting Case

Last week, Attorney General Brad Schimel filed with the U.S. Supreme Court the opening brief in Gill v. Whitford, the legal challenge to Wisconsin Republicans' redistricting map brought by Democratic voters against officials of the Wisconsin Elections Commission.
In the brief, Schimel argues that the Supreme Court should dismiss the district court decision because the maps the district court struck down comply with traditional redistricting principles and do not differ from the previous 2002 court-drawn map in terms of election outcomes.
Signed By Governor: Credit Card Skimmers, Scope Statement Expiration

Gov. Scott Walker signed 20 bills into law at the Capitol on Wednesday, Aug. 2. The bills included legislation on credit card skimmers, scope statements, renewable resources and more.
Walmart Joins Gov. Scott Walker to Support Red Cross Flood Relief Efforts

Gov. Scott Walker was in Milwaukee this week to support American Red Cross's flood relief effort for Wisconsin families affected by storms last month. Lisa Nelson from Walmart joined Walker and several other business leaders to highlight Red Cross's efforts.

Budget Poll Results

In the previous edition of Tidbits, we asked Twitter when the state budget will be enacted. Here are the results:
50% said between August 15-31
36% said September - October
14% said by August 14
0% said the budget would be later than the 40-year record of after October 28
What are your thoughts on when the budget will be enacted? Tweet us @HCG500!

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News Clips
Utilities and Energy
Alliant Energy seeks to expand wind power operation in Iowa: Wisconsin State Journal, August 4, 2017.
By the numbers: Wisconsin drinking water: Door County Pulse, August 4, 2017.

New state law targets credit card skimmers: Wisconsin Radio Network, August 3, 2017.

Economic Development
Foxconn payroll could hit $800M annually, state official says: Wisconsin State Journal, August 4, 2017.
Conservative group comes out against Foxconn deal: Daily Reporter, August 3, 2017.
Alderman: Paul Soglin recommends Oscar Mayer site to Foxconn: Wisconsin State Journal, August 3, 2017.
Foxconn steers clear of Trump's $30 billion investment claim: Wisconsin State Journal, August 3, 2017.
Foxconn said to be eyeing secondary site in Dane County: Wisconsin State Journal, August 2, 2017.

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