Local Politics

Dane Co. board rejects proposed jail referendum

People in Dane County will not have the opportunity to vote on a proposed reconsolidated and renovation project for the Dane County Jail after the county board rejected a proposal to add a referendum for the project to the April ballot.

Van Orden on his first two weeks in Congress

WEST SALEM, Wis. (WKBT) — 3rd Congressional District Representative Derrick Van Orden is now a member of three different House committees. During a visit at a farm in West Salem, the freshman congressman gave an update on his first couple weeks in Congress. The Republican was appointed to the Agriculture Committee, Transportation and Infrastructure Committee, and Veterans’ Affairs Committees. Van…

Wisconsin Assembly puts bail amendment on April ballot

The Republican-controlled Wisconsin Assembly gave a final, bipartisan push Thursday to a proposed constitutional amendment that would make it harder for violent criminals to get out of jail on bail. The measure will now go before voters to be ratified in the statewide April 4 election. Its passage in the Assembly by a 74-23 vote marks the culmination of a push by Republican lawmakers to speed the amendment before voters. Democratic Gov. Tony Evers is unable to veto a constitutional amendment. Democratic lawmakers said they were concerned about the scope of the amendment, which lawmakers plan to clarify before April.

Dems: Remove Wisconsin election official for voting comments

Wisconsin Democrats are calling for the Republican leader of the state Senate to remove his appointee to the state's bipartisan election commission over comments he made about minority turnout in Milwaukee. Ten of the 11 Democratic members of the Senate signed onto a statement Wednesday asking Senate Majority Leader Devin LeMahieu to rescind his appointment of Commissioner Robert Spindell, who publicly applauded GOP tactics in Milwaukee during the 2022 midterm that he credited with depressing turnout from Black and Hispanic voters. LeMahieu has declined to comment on the situation on several occasions in the week since Spindell's comments became public.

Bail reform amendment clears state Senate

MADISON, Wis. — A constitutional amendment that would change how bail is set in Wisconsin cleared one of the final hurdles before going to a referendum Tuesday, clearing…

Wisconsin judge dismisses complaint against GOP fake elector

A Wisconsin judge has dismissed an open records complaint against a Republican member of the Wisconsin Elections Commission who served as a fake elector for former President Donald Trump. Allegations that the elections commission violated the state open records law will go forward, but claims made against Commissioner Robert Spindell were dismissed Tuesday by a Dane County circuit judge. The judge ruled that the commission itself, not Spindell, is the legal authority that must maintain the records in question and therefore would be the target of any lawsuit seeking them.

GOP introduces flat tax for Wisconsin

MADISON, Wis. — Wisconsin's Republican Senate leader introduced a tax plan Friday that would reduce income taxes for residents over the next three years so that all Wisconsinites would pay a…

Kaul asks Legislature for $2.2M to keep school safety office

Democratic Attorney General Josh Kaul is asking Gov. Tony Evers and the Republican-controlled Legislature for $2.2 million in the next state budget to keep the state Justice Department's Office of School Safety going. Kaul said Friday that the office’s operations have been funded almost entirely with federal COVID-19 relief dollars, which have run out. Legislators created the office in 2018 following a school shooting in Parkland, Florida. The office has handed out $100 million in grants to schools to improve safety protocols. It also offers teachers training on how to handle incidents and operates a 24-hour tip line.