Stopping privatization of the Milwaukee Water Works, workers compensation issues for emergency workers and protection for volunteer emergency workers are issues that matter to AFSCME members this week. Read more here.
Legislator wants new law to ban sale or lease of Milwaukee Water Works
Legislation that would ban the sale or lease of the Milwaukee Water Works has been introduced as 2009 Assembly Bill 475. The bill, introduced by Rep. Fred Kessler (D-Milwaukee), has been referred to the Assembly Energy and Utilities Committee, which is chaired by Rep. Jim Soletski, (D-Green Bay). AFSCME strongly supports this legislation. Please contact Rep. Soletski’s office at 608-266-0485 and ask him to hold a hearing on the proposal. Or, call the toll free Legislative Hotline at 1-800-362-9472 during regular business hours and ask to leave a message for Rep. Soletski.
Establishing a “presumption” for employment-related infectious diseases
Under current law, if a corrections officer, fire fighter, EMT, or law enforcement officer is exposed to infectious diseases like hepatitis, meningitis or HIV while on the job, there is no “presumption” that the exposure occurred on the job and, therefore, the person is not eligible for worker’s compensation. A bill being advanced by Rep. Christine Sinicki (D-Milwaukee) and Sen. Jim Sullivan (D-West Allis) would establish a “presumption” that if someone employed in those occupations contracted the infectious disease on the job. The bill has not been assigned a number yet, but is referred to as LFB 3129/1. Please call your legislator and ask him or her to sign on to the proposal.
Volunteer Protections Bill
Anyone who serves their community as a volunteer EMT, fire fighter or first responder for a public agency, volunteer fire department or nonprofit corporation and whose duties interfere with their regular paying jobs would be granted certain protections if a bill that is now under consideration by lawmakers is passed. Senate Bill 308, offered by Sen. Kathleen Vinehout (D-Alma) will be the subject of a legislative hearing on Wednesday, October 14 at 1:00 in Room 400 Southeast of the State Capitol. An Assembly “companion” bill, AB 464, has been referred to the Assembly Labor Committee. AFSCME supports these bills and urges members to contact their Assembly Representative and Senator to ask them to act quickly on the bill.
Legislative Housekeeping Matters:
For information on these or any other bills, go to the web site of the Wisconsin Legislature at
Lawmakers are busy with the fall “committee work period” and will in formal session only a few days this fall. To learn more about committee hearings, go to the Legislature’s “committee schedules” web site at http://committeeschedule.legis.state.wi.us/.
For more information, contact the AFSCME lobbyists at 608-836-6666.