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Saturday, June 15, 2024

State News


Bill seeks to stop adults from allowing underage drinking in their homes

Adults who host underage drinking gatherings in their homes could face fines and jail time as part of a new proposal presented by two state legislators Tuesday. The proposed bill, spearheaded by state Rep. Andre Jacque, R-De Pere, and state Sen. Van Wanggaard, R-Racine, aims to address binge drinking and drunk driving, issues the lawmakers believe are being exacerbated by a cultural acceptance of underage drinking.

Two Republican state representatives proposed a bill Tuesday that would allow residents to carry concealed firearms without a permit or training.

Bill would allow concealed carry without permit in school zones

Wisconsinites could be allowed to carry concealed handguns without a permit if a bill proposed by multiple Republican state legislators Tuesday passes. The legislation replaces state gun-free school zone laws, and instead allows individual schools to determine by posting signs whether firearms are prohibited in their school or on school grounds under state trespass law. The bill, which comes six years after licensed concealed weapons were legalized in the state, would also allow people with concealed carry permits to bring guns into places they are currently banned, including school grounds and hospitals, unless signs are posted stating otherwise. Current Wisconsin law states that the exposed carry of a firearm is legal without a license, but it cannot be concealed in any way except for when a permit is obtained. The proposal, also called “Right to Carry” legislation, would eliminate the Wisconsin law requiring that anyone seeking a permit to carry a concealed weapon obtain a license and take a firearms training course.

Some Wisconsinites are concerned that Enbridge Inc.’s pipeline replacement plan in Minnesota will lead to an expansion in a Wisconsin pipeline that runs through part of Dane County. 

Wisconsin residents wary of corporate pipeline's promises to not expand

Enbridge Inc.’s plans to expand its crude oil pipeline in Minnesota has environmental advocates worried it will translate to further pipeline expansion in Wisconsin, despite protests and promises earlier this year. A $39 billion Canadian company, Enbridge owns all crude oil pipelines in Wisconsin and Minnesota. Some people have reason to believe that Enbridge is planning an expansion in Wisconsin, citing the need to support an increase in oil that will come with a line replacement in Minnesota, aging pipes in Wisconsin, legal changes and surveys from landowners. “Enbridge is absolutely going to have to expand their Wisconsin pipelines,” said Phyllis Hasbrouck, Wisconsin Safe Energy Alliance project leader. Enbridge denies these claims. “There’s been no decision regarding plans for a new pipeline in Wisconsin ... besides, it’s a lengthy process and would take a considerable amount of time,” said Scott Suder, manager of State Government Affairs at Enbridge. Additionally, Enbridge is a publicly traded company and would have to alert its stakeholders if it was moving forward with a plan, according to Suder. Enbridge plans to build a replacement for the Line 3 pipeline in Minnesota and abandon the old one, increasing capacity from 390 kilo barrels per day to 760 kilo barrels per day.

The state Senate voted Friday night to approve the state budget, the final hurdle before the document is ready for Gov. Scott Walker's signature

Bill would make juvenile correctional officers report child abuse

The state Senate passed a bill Wednesday that would make correctional officers in juvenile prisons mandatory reporters for child abuse and neglect. The legislation was prompted by a lengthy investigation into allegations of systemic problems at the Lincoln Hills and Copper Lake Schools, youth prisons for boys and girls, respectively, run by the Wisconsin Department of Corrections.

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