The Assembly met June 21 (floor calendar) to vote on bills and resolutions. The Assembly passed 15 bills in total, including a bill addressing reading instruction in K-12 schools and creating an early literacy assessment and intervention program. The Joint Finance Committee set aside $50 million in the state budget to implement this program.
Notably, the Assembly passed AB 304, which includes a variety of reforms to state alcohol laws, including creating a Division of Alcohol Beverages within the Department of Revenue to oversee alcohol regulation and enforcement. The Assembly also passed bills that would permit pharmacists to prescribe certain contraceptives, create an appropriation to reimburse ambulance service providers under the Medical Assistance program, and add a sales tax exemption for data centers.
The Assembly concurred in SB 49, which would prohibit state agencies and local units of government from placing restrictions on the connection or reconnection of a utility service based on the type or source of energy provided, and from discriminating against a public utility based on the nature or source of utility service it provides. The bill is aimed at preventing state agencies and local units of government from putting restrictions on new fossil fuel connections, such as natural gas connections. The authors cite the Berkely, CA ban on new natural gas connections as an impetus for the legislation. The Senate passed the bill on June 7.
The Assembly also passed five bills to ratify collective bargaining agreements between the state and various employee groups, including law enforcement, state attorneys, and building trades. Finally, the Assembly passed five joint resolutions, including one recognizing June as Dairy Month in Wisconsin.
The Assembly delayed action on one bill on its calendar, AB 2, which would repeal the remnants of the personal property tax, a longtime priority of many state business associations. The personal property tax was eliminated by 2023 Act 12, budget-related legislation on local government funding which was signed into law June 20 by Gov. Evers.
For more information about the 2023-24 legislative session in Wisconsin, see the following articles:
- Senate and Assembly Floor Sessions: June 14
- Senate and Assembly Floor Sessions: June 7
- Assembly Passes Shared Revenue Bill; Acts 6-10 Signed Into Law
- Evers Signs First Acts of 2023-24 Session
- Assembly Floor Sessions: April 2023
- Senate Floor Session: April 19
- Assembly and Senate Floor Sessions: March 2023