Legislative Summer Study Committees Announced

The Wisconsin Joint Legislative Council has released the list of study committees that will meet this summer to examine major issues and problems identified by the Legislature. The study committees are made up of Legislators and citizens who are interested in or knowledgeable about the study topic.

This summer’s committees are as follows:

Special Committee on 911 Communications – Rep. Joan Ballweg, Chair and Sen. Robert Jauch, Vice-Chair
This committee will examine current 911 call protocols and determine what needs to be done to improve the current system. This will include considering the practices of other 911 systems around the country, preparing the training requirements for 911 personnel, and a study of how to best allocate funding to ensure a safe and reliable 911 system.

Special Committee on Permanency for Young Children in the Child Welfare System – Rep. Samantha Kerkman, Chair and Sen. Mary Lazich, Vice-Chair
This committee will consider methods to reduce the amount of time it takes to put children who are at risk of being placed outside their home in a permanent living situation. Primarily working with laws pertaining to children under the age of eight, this committee will also explore ways to place these at-risk children with a blood relative as a permanent living option.

Special Committee on Improving Educational Opportunities in High School – Senator Luther Olsen, Chair and Rep. Paul Farrow, Vice-Chair
This committee will aim to create positive relationships between high schools and technical colleges, universities, and other post-graduate programs to ensure that high school graduates acquire the necessary skills to serve as a valuable member of the job force. These aims will be met by considering technical education and post-secondary enrollment opportunities in states outside of Wisconsin and evaluating current options at Wisconsin’s high schools.

Special Committee on Legal Interventions for Persons with Alzheimer’s Disease and Related Dementias – Rep. Dan Knodl, Chair and Rep. Penny Bernard Schaber, Vice-Chair
This committee will meet to discuss clarifying current legislation regarding possible solutions for vulnerable plagued by dementia and other psychiatric conditions.

Special Committee on Supervised Release and Discharge of Sexually Violent Persons – Rep. Pat Strachota, Chair and Sen. Alberta Darling, Vice-Chair
This committee will explore current laws regarding the grant of supervised release for sexually violent individuals. This will include looking at what constitutes being fit for supervised release and considering how involved the courts should be in making this determination.

Special Committee on Reporting Child Abuse and Child Neglect – Sen. Alberta Darling, Chair and Sen. Jennifer Shilling, Vice-Chair
This committee will be tasked with reorganizing much of Wisconsin’s law regarding the reporting of child abuse and neglect. The committee will also recommend changes to current law regarding who is required to report suspected abuse or neglect of children and the circumstances under which such a report is mandated; and study the reporting of suspected abuse of students at institutions of higher education.

Special Committee on Review of Emergency Detention and Admission of Minors under Chapter 51 with Sen. Mary Lazich as Chair and Rep. Sandy Pasch as Vice-Chair was extended.
The Special Committee is directed to review the following provisions in ch. 51, Stats.: (a) the appropriateness of, and inconsistencies in, the utilization of emergency detention procedures under s. 51.15, Stats., across this state, and the availability and cost of emergency detention facilities; (b) the inconsistent statutory approaches to emergency detention between Milwaukee County and other counties in the state; and (c) the inconsistent application of procedures relating to admission of minors under s. 51.13, Stats., as modified by 2005 Wisconsin Act 444.

Legislative Council also appointed Rep. Jeffrey Mursau and Sen. Kathleen Vinehout to serve two year terms as Chair and Vice-Chair respectively of the Special Committee on State-Tribal Relations.

Members of the public are invited to serve on special committees of interest to them. Service on the committees involves participating in meetings, offering varied perspectives on the issues, and voting on what action the committee will take. The committees generally meet between three and six times and report their findings, in the form of bill drafts, to the Council.

If you are interested in getting involved with one of the study committees, contact a member of the Hamilton Consulting team and we can provide you with additional information.

This post was authored by Hamilton Consulting intern Andrew Bassan, a 2L at the University of Wisconsin Law School.