On Thursday, Governor Walker signed a wide variety of
bills into law. Of the 23 bills that received the Governor's signature, I
authored four of them. I was able to join the Governor as he signed SB 183, SB
278, AB 359, and AB 62 into law.
183, now 2013 Wisconsin Act 80: I authored this
bill with Representative Jeff Mursau (R-Crivitz) which streamlines shoreland
zoning ordinances by removing duplicate zoning ordinances when the area is
278, now 2013 Wisconsin Act 81: This bill was
authored with Represenative Michael Schraa (R-Oshkosh) and will help protect
workers near mining sites
259, now 2013 Wisconsin Act 82: I authored this
bill with Representative Rob Swearingen (R-Rhinelander) and it allows the
Department of Natural Resources to lease state forest land within the town of
Boulder Junction to the Boulder Junction Shooting Range for a maximum term of 30
62, now 2013 Wisconsin Act 83: I authored this
bill with Representatives Garey Bies (R-Sister Bay) and Terese Berceau
(D-Madison) which broadens the definition of an “intoxicant” to include
substances that are inhaled, ingested, or consumed.
You can see the complete list of bills signed by the
Governor Walker Announces Timber
This week the Governor held a Forestry Economic Summit
on Thursday and Friday in Madison. The event brought together many industry
stakeholders and individuals engaged in the forest industry to discuss current
forest management as well as future challenges and opportunities. On Thursday,
the Governor announced that the Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation would
be awarding a $49,000 grant to the Chequamegon-Nicolet Forest Stewardship
This grant is intended to help increase timber sale and
harvesting in the Chequamegon-Nicolet Forest. This forest covers 1.5 million
acres over eleven counties and every year millions of board feet of timber is
going unharvested. I appreciate the Governor for recognizing the important role
the logging industry has in our economy, and I think this grant could be a good
first step to renewing our focus on responsible harvest
Congrats to Sartori Co.
The preliminary 9-Day deer hunt numbers are available
and show that Wisconsin had a 7 percent drop statewide in the total number of
deer harvested. The northern part of the state faired the worst with a 15
percent overall drop in harvest and a 19 percent drop in the number of bucks
harvested. Statewide, preliminary 2013 figures show that 226,582 deer were
harvested with 97,765 of them being bucks. Last year, the 2012 preliminary
numbers showed 128,917 antlerless deer harvested with 114,822 of them being
I have been hearing plenty of stories to support these
numbers. The bad weather, late hunt, increased predators, aging forest habitat
and a number of other factors have have been attributed to a poor 2013 hunt.
This year 633,602 gun deer licenses were sold. Nearly
27,000 of these were first-time hunters. Of the first time licenses, about at
third of them were women. Overall, women accounted for 10 percent of the
licenses sold going into opening weekend.
On Tuesday, the Natural Resources Board approved a
second bobcat management zone south of Highway 64. The approval follows studies
that show bobcats are being found in the southern two-thirds of the state at an
increasing rate. Currently, there is only one management zone that allows for
hunting and trapping.
The proposal will still need legislative approval
before it can be implemented. The harvest quotas will be set in the near future
but it is estimated that a limited number of permits will be available. If
approved in time, hunting and trapping could take place south of Highway 65
starting October 2014.
Thanks to My Interns
I have been very lucky the last couple months to have a
great group of interns to help my staff with daily tasks. All of them are
current students at the University of Wisconsin - Madison, so I want to thank
them and wish them good luck on their finals next week.
From left to right: Tim Morris, Tyler Kehoe, and Gina
Not pictured: Emily Craven
AJ is a constituent of mine and is originally from
White Lake, WI. It has been great to have him on board and he has done a
wonderful job this semester.