Letter from Rep. Petryk: Governor Walker's budget vetoes
On Sunday, June 30th, 2013, Governor Walker signed into law Assembly Bill 40, better known as the state’s 2013-15 budget bill. Now known as 2013 Wisconsin Act 20, the budget bill will cut state income taxes for everyone who pays, freeze tuition in the University of Wisconsin (UW) System, increase funding for each student in public education, and improve Wisconsin’s infrastructure, amongst many other things.
Though the Governor largely agreed with the changes the powerful Joint Finance Committee made and concurred by the Assembly and the Senate, there were some significant changes that the Governor made before he signed the budget bill into law.
Here is a list of a portion of the vetoes that the Governor made to the 2013-15 budget bill:
• Unemployment Insurance – Holidays and Partial Benefits: the sections vetoed create a provision that modifies eligibility for partial unemployment insurance benefits.
• UW System Segregate Fee Freeze: this section would have required the Board of Regents to ensure that the allocable portion of segregated fees charged to students in 2013-14 and 2014-15 not exceed the segregated fees charged to students in 2012-13 school year. With this partial veto, a portion of segregated fees allocated by students may increase in the years listed above over the amount charged in 2012-13 school year.
• Tobacco Use Surcharge for State Employee Health Insurance: the Governor vetoed this provision in its entirety. Due to new federal guidelines regarding wellness programs and tobacco use surcharges, these would make the program too burdensome to administer and could likely increase costs. The ultimate goal with this provision is to encourage more smokers to quit and likely this goal would not be met under this provision.
• Wisconsin Center for Investigative Journalism: This provision was completely removed from the budget bill as it singles out one organization. However, the Governor has requested that the Board of Regents develop a policy for the UW System related to the use of UW System facilities and staff by outside organizations.
• Regulation of Bail Bond Agents, Bail Bond Agencies, and Bail Bond Recovery Agents: Under this provision, the Department of Safety and Professional Services would regulate and license bail bond agents, agencies, and recovery agents. Also, the Department would collect a fee of $1000 per agent or agency for licensing annually. The Governor partially vetoed this provision and feels that separate legislation on this issue would be best.
Again, this is just a small sample of the changes that the Governor made. For a full list of the Governor’s vetoes and to review his budget approval message, please visit: http://media.jrn.com/documents/Final+Veto+Message+-+July+1.pdf.
This budget is a positive step forward for the citizens of Wisconsin. Taxpayers in Wisconsin will see nearly $1 billion in tax relief and the line on property taxes will be held. Also, $380 million in new state dollars will be invested in public education. As I have said before, I believe that this budget will protect our future while helping create an increasingly business friendly environment in our state.
July In-District Office Hours
I will again be holding in-district office hours on the following Mondays: July 15th, July 22nd, and July 29th, 2013. The goal of these office hours is to welcome constituents from the 93rd Assembly District to come and speak directly to Representative Petryk on issues of importance to them.
The following are the times and locations for office hours. Individual constituent meeting times will be based on a first come first serve basis as time allows:
July 15, 2013
Pepin: Pepin Village Hall – Community Room
508 2nd St
Pepin, WI 54579
Bay City: Flat Pennies Ice Cream
W6442 Hwy 35
Bay City, WI
Elmwood: Elmwood Village Hall – Dining Room
323 W. Winter Ave
Elmwood, WI 54740
Durand: Durand City Hall
104 E. Main St.
July 22, 2013
Downsville: Downsville Town Hall
E4583 County Road C
Pleasant Valley: Pleasant Valley Town Hall
S10414 County Road I
July 29, 2013
Prescott: Prescott City Hall – Council Chambers
800 Borner St
Prescott, WI 54021
Pierce/ Pepin Cooperative: W7725 US Hwy 10
Ellsworth, WI 54011
Plum City: Senior Center
501 Main St
Plum City, WI 54761
Spring Valley: Spring Valley Village Hall
E121 South 2nd Street
Spring Valley, WI 54767
Happy 4th of July
I wish all of you a wonderful 4th of July and hope that you spend your day off celebrating the 237th birthday of our nation with your family and friends. While you are cooking hotdogs and brats on the grill and enjoying what will hopefully be great Wisconsin weather and watching fireworks in your community, please keep the following fireworks safety tips in mind:
• Never allow young children to play with or ignite fireworks.
• Avoid buying fireworks that are packaged in brown paper because this is often a sign that the fireworks were made for professional displays and that they could pose a danger to consumers.
• Always have an adult supervise fireworks activities. Parents don't realize that young children suffer injuries from sparklers. Sparklers burn at temperatures of about 2,000 degrees - hot enough to melt some metals.
• Never place any part of your body directly over a fireworks device when lighting the fuse.
• Never try to re-light or pick up fireworks that have not ignited fully.
• Never point or throw fireworks at another person.
• Keep a bucket of water or a garden hose handy in case of fire or other mishap.
• Light fireworks one at a time, then move back quickly.
• Never carry fireworks in a pocket or shoot them off in metal or glass containers.
• After fireworks complete their burning, douse the spent device with plenty of water from a bucket or hose before discarding it to prevent a trash fire.
Have a safe and enjoyable holiday!
Pierce County Dairy Promotion Breakfast
On Saturday, June 22nd, I attended the final of our 93rd Assembly District’s June Dairy Promotion Breakfasts. It was held at the beautiful LoRan Rolling Acres Farm just south of Plum City in Pierce County. Despite the chilly weather, attendance was excellent as people enjoyed great waffles, sausage, fried cheese curds, and of course, milk.
Our hosts were Randy and Lori Larson who are the third generation to operate the farm which now only raises custom heifers. Randy and Lori now own 218 acres and raise an average of 672 heifers each year. They dedicated the day to the memory of Randy’s father, John Larson (January 23, 1937 – February 12, 2013), who shared his passion and love for farming with Randy who now along with Lori, carries on the family farming legacy.
Upcoming Events in the 93rd Assembly District
River Falls Days
38th Annual Ellsworth Polka Fest
Two Wooden Dance Floors
4th of July Celebrations
Viewing Areas: Carson Park, Pheonix Park, Half Moon Lake, and Lakeview Cemetery
Start time is at dusk
Fireworks at dusk on Lake Pepin
Next to the dam north end of McKay
On the Living Waters Church grounds
DJ starts at 5:00 p.m., fireworks begin at dusk
Freedom Fest 2013
Fest begins at 2:00 p.m. at lower Wakanda Park
Arkansaw Fair Grounds
July 20th - Horse & Pony Show
July 21st - Dog Show
July 24-28th - Fair
Eau Claire County Exposition Center
Fair Grounds, Menomonie
Fair Grounds, Mondovi
Fair Grounds, Ellsworth
Durand Rod and Gun Club Chicken Dinners
July 11, 25
August 8, 22
September 5, 19
October 3, 17
Greater Insurance Service of Durand (715) 672-5921
Mondovi Insurance-Mondovi (715)926-3341