Gov. Tony Evers notified the U.S. Department of State Wednesday that Wisconsin will continue supporting refugee resettlement in the state.
The move follows an executive order from President Trump requiring states to provide consent for refugee resettlement. Evers said "in Wisconsin, we believe in kindness, respect, empathy, and compassion—those are our Wisconsin values." The state took in 472 refugees last year after more than 1,000 in 2017. Wisconsin counties could still vote against accepting refugees if they chose.
Pepin County adds drug endangered children team
The Pepin County Sheriff’s Department has created a new team to help children who are at risk for abuse connected to drug-related problems.
Deputy Trevor Rudd and Pepin County Department of Human Services case manager Katie Pfeiffer are leading the new program. Training programs will be created to help schools recognize when students might be at risk. The drug endangered children team will work with the district attorney’s office, the state Corrections Department, schools and Advent Health in Durand.
House members vote along party lines to impeach Trump
Members of the U.S. House of Representatives voted along party lines to approve two articles of impeachment Wednesday.
President Donald Trump was sanctioned for his conduct toward Ukraine and his refusal to cooperate with the House inquiry. The vote came after 12 hours of debate. Three Wisconsin Democrats voted “yes” and four Republicans in the state's congressional delegation voted “no” on both. Minnesota’s Collin Peterson voted with Republicans. Northwest Wisconsin’s 7th Congressional District seat, vacated by former GOP Congressman Sean Duffy, has not yet been filled.
[Bryan Steil (R)-no, Mark Pocan (D)-yes, Ron Kind (D)-yes, Gwen Moore (D)-yes, Jim Sensenbrenner (R)-no, Glen Grothman (R)-no, Mike Gallagher (R)-no]
Backers of voter registration purge have until Monday to respond to appeal
Backers of a voter registration purge have been given until Monday to respond to the appeal filed by the Wisconsin Department of Justice.
The appeals court rejected the DOJ request that the purge be put on hold immediately. A judge on Ozaukee County ruled more than 230,000 registered voters could become ineligible to cast a ballot due to mistakes in their registration – like incorrect addresses. More than 20 percent of the voters on the list to be purged live in Milwaukee County.
Legislative committee approves pay raises for state workers
The Legislature’s Joint Committee on Employment Relations has given its approval to pay raises for University of Wisconsin and state employees.
Those workers would get a 2% bump each of the next two years. The special bipartisan committee didn’t vote on pay raises for state troopers because of an approved 23% increase for entry-level salaries. Panel members weren’t just handing out money – they also rejected the governor’s request to set Wisconsin’s minimum hourly wage at $15.
Wis. man, 61, dies after lighting fires in his home for warmth
The Milwaukee County medical examiner says a 61-year-old man found dead in his home Wednesday had been lighting fires inside containers to stay warm.
His electrical service had been turned off. An autopsy will be conducted Thursday to determine an exact cause of death, but it is believed he was the victim of carbon monoxide poisoning or hypothermia. The man’s name hasn’t been released. He died on a night the temperatures dropped into the single digits.
Legislation to force law enforcement cooperation with ICE draws opposition
Members of the Legislature’s Committee on Labor and Regulatory Reform are hearing some loud opposition to a bill which would force law enforcement agencies to cooperate with immigration agents.
Testimony on the legislation was heard Tuesday at the Capitol. Leaders of Voces de la Frontera say they want to make sure immigrants feel safe in their communities – so they will be willing to work with officers. They say the bill creates more fear. Republican members of the committee say they are trying to focus on undocumented immigrants who commit crimes.