Hamilton Political Tidbits – April 13, 2018

Political Tidbits - April 13, 2018
Hamilton Consulting Group
 April 13, 2018
Wisconsin political news for clients and colleagues.

With the legislature out of session, the focus in and around the state capitol has shifted to upcoming elections, bill signings, and legislative study committees, among other developments. In this Tidbits:
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2017-18 Session Overview

Hamilton Consulting Group recaps highlights from the state capitol in the 2017-18 legislative session. 

Speaker Ryan Not Running for Re-election

U.S. House Speaker Paul Ryan (R-Wisconsin) announced this week he will not run for re-election in November. Ryan said he will finish his term in the House and will stay on as Speaker for the remainder of the legislative session. With Ryan's departure comes much speculation of who will run for his seat. 
Gov. Walker Calls June Special Elections

After a series of court decisions and appeals, Gov. Scott Walker has called special elections to fill the vacant Senate District 1 and Assembly District 42.Walker had previously declined to hold special elections because he argued the legislature would wrap up session before new legislators would be elected. The vacancies came after the appointments of Sen. Frank Lasee (R-DePere) and Rep. Keith Ripp (R-Lodi) to the administration in late December.
Dallet Elected to Wisconsin Supreme Court

On April 3, Wisconsin voters elected Milwaukee County Circuit Court Judge Rebecca Dallet to the Wisconsin Supreme Court. Progressive candidate Dallet defeated her opponent, conservative Judge Michael Screnock, 56 to 44 percent. When Dallet replaces retiring Justice Michael Gableman on the bench in August, the court's conservative majority will shift from 5-2 to 4-3.
Signed By Governor: School Safety, Apprenticeships, Civil Litigation Reforms & More

With the legislature finished for the 2017-18 session, Gov. Scott Walker has been busy signing legislation into law. So far this session, Walker has signed 273 bills, and a handful of others passed by both chambers of the legislature are eligible for signing in the upcoming weeks. Highlights of bill signings over the past several weeks include: school safety, apprenticeships, civil litigation reforms, criminal justice reforms, welfare reforms, and opioid prevention legislation.
Proposed Legislative Study Committees Distributed

Each interim summer, the Wisconsin Legislative Council provides legal and policy support to several study committees established by the Joint Legislative Council. The Joint Legislative Council co-chairs Sen. Roger Roth (R-Appleton) and Rep. Rob Brooks (R-Saukville) have distributed a list of nine proposed study committees for the 2018 interim.
Court Watch: Supreme Court Issues Decisions on Administrative Law, UIM Coverage, Attorney Fees

The Wisconsin Supreme Court has issued three recent decisions of note. Click on the cases below for summaries of the opinions.

DHS Hosts Opioid Forum in Milwaukee

This week, the Department of Health Services (DHS) held a two-day forum in Milwaukee focusing on life-saving strategies to address the opioid crisis in Wisconsin.
DHS Projects a $59.7 Million GPR Balance in Medicaid for the 2017-19 Biennium

On March 30, the Department of Health Services (DHS) submitted its quarterly report to the Joint Finance Committee chairs, detailing the latest Medicaid projection for the 2017-19 biennium. DHS estimates the state will end the biennium in June 2019 with a balance of $59.7 million general purpose revenue (GPR) and $145.6 million in all funds.
Gov. Walker's Autonomous Vehicle Committee Continues to Collect Information 

Gov. Scott Walker's Steering Committee on Autonomous and Connected Vehicle Testing and Deployment held their sixth meeting on March 28 in Madison. The meeting included presentations from various stakeholders, including Wisconsin Bike Fed, Alliance of Automobile Manufacturers, and MidAmerican Freight Coalition.

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News Clips
Paul Ryan's departure sparks unrest, GOP fears losing House: Wisconsin State Journal, April 13, 2018.
Robin Vos won't run to replace Paul Ryan: Wisconsin State Journal, April 13, 2018.
Reince Priebus won't run for Paul Ryan's seat: Wisconsin State Journal, April 12, 2018.
House Speaker Paul Ryan will not seek re-election, AP reports: Wisconsin State Journal, April 11, 2018.

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