On March 21, the governor signed Assembly Bill 512 into law as 2015 Wisconsin Act 270, creating a new “Frank Lloyd Wright Heritage Trail” through Wisconsin. The bipartisan bill passed the Assembly and Senate a few weeks before.
Rep. Todd Novak (R-Dodgeville), Rep. Cory Mason (D-Racine), and Sen. Howard Marklein (R-Spring Green) introduced the legislation, which directs the Department of Transportation (DOT) to create a trail featuring different buildings designed by Frank Lloyd Wright. The trail will begin at the Wisconsin/Illinois state line, continue through Madison and end at Frank Lloyd Wright’s home in Spring Green.
Under Act 280, the state cost for the signage is capped at $50,000, although the legislation allows for contributions from other entities. In addition, the Department of Tourism is required to reimburse DOT for the costs for the trail signage. The Department of Tourism will use current marketing funds provided in the 2015-2017 budget to promote the trail and is required to report on their efforts to the legislature.
A similar provision was included in the 2015-2017 budget last summer. However, the governor vetoed the provision, stating that it circumvented the current process for DOT to place highway signs. He also objected to earmarking the funds for such a direct purpose in the Department of Tourism’s budget.