Monday, October 31, 2011

Wisconsin’s new conceal and carry law

Regardless of your position on the issue, there’s no doubt things will be a lot different in Wisconsin on November 1, when concealed carry goes into effect.

My office has been getting calls from constituents about the new concealed carry law, so I decided to write a brief blog to answer some frequently asked questions.

First and foremost, the definition of a concealed weapon includes more than just guns. The new law covers knives, tasers and even billy clubs. In order to qualify for a concealed carry permit, you must provide proof you’ve completed adequate firearms safety training, which can include training from another state.

Even if you get a concealed carry permit, it doesn’t mean you can carry your billy club or other weapon of your choice anywhere. Many state and municipal facilities have banned concealed weapons. Public schools, for example, were exempted in the law.

Many people have called our office asked how to ban concealed carry on their personal property. The City of Madison has published a sign that will likely become as universal in Madison as the No Smoking Sign.

You also should check with your boss to find out if you or your coworkers will be allowed to conceal and carry on the job. You may find it helpful to know who’s packing at work. For example, it appears Governor Walker is going to allow the general public to pack heat in the Capitol. Yet, his own instructions allow supervisors of state workers who work in the Capitol to prohibit their employees from concealing and carrying.

There are a bunch of questions that can arise out of conceal carry. In fact, the Department of Justice put out a 56 page Frequently Asked Questions about the new law. In addition, the City of Madison published a great FAQ as it pertains to city property, such as busses and buildings.

This new law has the potential to have a dramatic impact on your life. So, I encourage you to educate yourself as much as possible on this new law.

Friday, October 21, 2011

Welcome to the Committee on Criticizing Colleges and Universities

He held a public hearing on the “abuse” of sick leave for UW employees.

He invited an ultra-conservative lawyer from Virginia to tell us that we have too many people of color at UW-Madison. 

Now that there is something that will actually impact the quality of education students receive at their UW campus, Assembly Colleges and Universities Committee Chair, Rep. Steve Nass (R-Whitewater) is denying Assembly Democrats’ request to for a hearing.

You see, Governor Walker recently announced he would cut an additional $65.7million above the $250 million Republicans already imposed while he is barely taking any cuts out of his own office.

We all knew at some point that the state was going to have to make $174.3 million in additional lapses. It just seems odd that the UW is being asked to absorb $65.7 million or 37.7% of the total lapse while Governor Walker is volunteering just $1,742 in cuts to his own office, which makes up just .001% of the cut.

Perhaps the committee should be renamed the Assembly Committee on Criticizing Colleges and Universities.

Monday, October 10, 2011

Special Session? Special for Whom?

...Immunity to pharmaceutical companies, attorney’s legal fees and trespasser liability seem more like a tea party manifesto or a corporate fundraising solicitation than a special session on jobs to me...

Read my entire guest blog for about the pending fall floor period and special session here.

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Pocan exposes Walker's legislative strategy

When I went to the ALEC convention in August, they shared strategic tips on passing special interest legislation. In this video, I talk about how Governor Scott Walker is using that tactic to fast track his special interest legislation under the guise of a "jobs" agenda.