Hamilton Political Tidbits – August 14, 2020

Hamilton Political Tidbits - August 14, 2020
Hamilton Consulting Group
 August 14, 2020
Wisconsin political news for clients and colleagues.

If you have any additional questions, please contact a member of the Hamilton Consulting team

August MU Poll Surveys Wis. Voters on 2020 Election, Masks, Economy

The most recent Marquette University (MU) Law School poll, conducted Aug. 4-9, 2020, also covered the 2020 Presidential election, the coronavirus response, economic hardship, police reform and other current issues.

Wisconsin August Primary Update

The Wisconsin 2020 Primary was relatively uneventful when considering the state of Wisconsin politics over the last decade. It also proved to be a very good night for incumbents.

Gov. Evers Issues Executive Order Declaring Public Health Emergency and Requiring Face Coverings Statewide; Legislative Republicans Push Back

On July 30, Gov. Evers declared a public health emergency effective for the next 60 days (or until it is revoked by Gov. Evers or by action of the Legislature). Pursuant to the declaration, the governor issued a statewide requirement for all persons to wear masks. The statewide mask requirement goes into effect at 12:01 a.m. on Saturday, August 1, 2020, and expires on September 28, 2020, or by a subsequent superseding emergency order. We anticipate a legal challenge will be filed.

PFAS Update: NRB Tables Foam Emergency Rule; WisPAC Releases Draft Plan

Earlier this year, the legislature approved and the governor signed into law 2019 Wisconsin Act 101, legislation that regulates firefighting foam that contains PFAS. The Department of Natural Resources drafted Emergency Rule WA-06-20(E), as directed in Act 101, and it was put on the agenda for the Natural Resources Board (the Board) to approve this week. 

Continue reading the PFAS update.

PSC Extends Utility Shut-Off Moratorium

On July 24, the three-person Public Service Commission (PSC) voted 2-1 to extend the utility shut-off moratorium for only residential customers until September 1. In June, the Commission decided to lift the moratorium and utility disconnections were scheduled for delinquent customers starting on July 25. The moratorium was originally implemented by Gov. Evers in March in response to the COVID-19 pandemic and high unemployment rates and originally applied to all customer classes, including commercial and industrial.

Governor Evers Directs State Agencies to Identify More Savings

On July 22, Gov. Evers announced a directive for state agencies to identify $250 million in additional savings for the current fiscal year (FY 20-21). This is the second round of cuts by the administration to manage state expenditures, as state revenues are down due to pandemic. In April, the governor ordered a five percent cut to state agency spending - totaling $70 million.

Governor Evers's Task Force on Climate Change Wraps Up Public Comment 

The Governor's Task Force on Climate Change, headed by Lt. Gov. Mandela Barnes, has been meeting periodically since December 19, 2019.

The task force divided their work among three sub-committees: Healthy Communities & Strong Economy, Land Use & Conservation and Energy, Housing & Infrastructure. Beginning in April, the three subcommittee have been remotely meeting to discuss recommendations, prioritize needs, watch stakeholder presentations, and listen to public comment. The public comment period ended on July 31.

Continue reading about the task force.

WCJC Joins Support for Federal "SAFE TO WORK Act."

On July 30th, the Wisconsin Civil Justice Council signed on in support with the U.S. Chamber of Commerce urging Congress to create COVID-19 liability protections for businesses and schools who comply with applicable government health and safety standards. You can read the full letter of support here.

Continue reading about WCJC.

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News Clips
Utilities and Energy
Two weeks later, Wisconsin's mask mandate remains in place: Wisconsin Public Radio, August 12, 2020
Economic Development
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