Gov. Tony Evers got his special legislative session on gun control Thursday – sort of.
Republican leaders gaveled in, then gaveled out, with no discussion and not taking the vote the governor had demanded. Evers says the majority party is ignoring the will “of 80 percent of the state.” Assembly Speaker Robin Vos accuses the governor of “playing politics.” Vos and Senate Majority Leader Scott Fitzgerald maintain universal background checks and a “red flag” law infringe upon Second Amendment rights.
Evers appoints interim Wis. ag secretary
Gov. Tony Evers is appointing Randy Romanski as interim secretary of the Wisconsin Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection.
The move comes after Senate Republicans failed to confirm Evers' ag secretary nominee Brad Pfaff. Evers said "our farmers are experiencing a growing dairy crisis, devastating flooding and an unpredictable trade war, the last thing they need is Republican politicians playing political games with our leading agricultural agency." Romanski was serving as DATCP deputy secretary, and was ag secretary under former Gov. Jim Doyle.
Republicans unable to override Evers budget vetoes
An effort to override three budget vetoes by Governor Tony Evers has fallen short in the Wisconsin Assembly.
The 62-34 vote was along party lines and Republicans needed at least two Democrats to switch sides. That didn’t happen. Republicans were trying to restore funding for a regional mental health crisis center in northern Wisconsin and for doctors who care for people in Wisconsin state health programs. They also wanted to stop the governor from giving himself more flexibility in how to spend a half-million dollars to increase the number of health care providers in the state.
Eau Claire teams with Xcel Energy in effort to be carbon-free by 2050
Eau Claire city officials are taking steps to be carbon-free by the year 2050.
A historic agreement between the city and Xcel Energy was signed Thursday. Participants say the deal is the first of its kind in the state. They say they can reach the goal through clean energy programs, economic development and new technologies. The plan is to use more electricity from solar, wind farms and nuclear power plants. Eau Claire is expected to be 65 percent carbon-free in five years.
Northwoods volunteers getting snowmobile trails ready for season
Volunteers have been working on getting northern Wisconsin snowmobile trails ready for the season since late summer.
In Vilas County, the Barnstormers Snowmobile Club in Sayner works with others to maintain almost 80 miles of trails, clearing debris and putting up signs for safety. The biggest threat to snowmobiling safety is something the club can’t control – the use of alcohol leading to crashes. Those volunteers say they still have a lot of work to complete, but the trails will be ready when the season starts.