Final Legislation Goes Through State Senate

As we reported last week, an amended version of a bill regarding insurance coverage of oral chemotherapy  (SB 300)was passed in the Assembly. The amended version of the bill returned to the Senate this week, and was passed (26-7). The amended version of the bill provides that an insurance plan that covers both intravenous chemotherapy and oral chemotherapy must either offer cost-sharing parity or establish a drug copayment of no more than $100 for a 30-day supply of oral chemotherapy drugs.

The amendment also clarifies that in the case of a qualified high deductible plan (Health Savings Account – HSA plan) the special treatment for oral chemotherapy does not apply until the insured has met his or her deductible for the year under such a plan.

With passage in the Senate, the bill now heads to Governor Walker’s desk, where it is expected to be signed into law.

The Senate approved Assembly Bill 712 earlier this week as part of their last day of general business. This bill, introduced by Rep. Mark Born and Sen. Paul Farrow, will remove an unnecessary and burdensome administrative rule that required employers keep time records for all of their employees. Unlike federal law, which only requires employers keep records with respect to non-exempt employees, Wisconsin forced employers to maintain time of the beginning and end of each work day and time of beginning and end of all meal periods for all employees.

Trying to track the hours of salaried employees, especially executives who work all hours of the day, can prove to be quite difficult. By eliminating this rule, Wisconsin law related to time keeping will mirror the federal requirement and better align with other states’ standards.

Assembly Bill 769 provides a definition of project costs under the tax incremental financing program. The bill allows parking structures that support redevelopment or expanding a facility, to be included if the city in question generally finances similar facilities with utility user fees, from the definition of project costs. The bill passed the Assembly in February, and passed the Senate unanimously this week.

Senate Bill 509 relates to the operation of agricultural vehicles on highways. The Assembly passed the bill with a number of amendments in late March. The Senate concurred in the amendment, and the bill now awaits signature from Governor Walker.

Assembly Bill 803 provides for substance abuse programs for employees performing on public utility projects located in public rights-of-way and passing emergency or roadside services vehicles stopped on or near the highway. The bill has now been passed by both house of the State Legislature and awaits Governor Walker’s signature.

Assembly Bill 226 expands a grant for technical colleges which provide skills training for a Wisconsin business. Previously, this grant was available to businesses with no more than 100 employees. The bill expands the program to businesses with no more than 250 employees. The grant also has been expanded to provide assistance in market expansion and business diversification. The bill was passed by the Assembly in June 2013; the Senate passed the bill unanimously this week. The bill now goes to Governor Walker’s desk.

This post was submitted by Hamilton Intern, Rebecca Ballweg.