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Thursday, March 4, 2010

 7:10 PM 

Emergency legislative plan blocked

A bill to provide some procedures for the Legislature in case of an enemy attack or other emergency was blocked by Assembly Republicans.

Rep. Dean Kaufert, R-Neenah, stalled the bill by objecting to the third reading.

The bill would the Legislature to meet outside of Madison in case of emergency. The bill also would allow legislators to hold a virtual session in case of a pandemic or other emergency prohibits a meeting in the Capitol.

The bill was amended by the voice vote on the Assembly floor to allow for a succession plan for legislators. Under the proposal, county chairs of the party that holds the legislative district would submit a list of interim successor nominees to the state party chair. The state party chair would submit between three and five names to the Senate or Assembly party leader within seven days of the vacancy occurring. The leader would have to name a successor within 14 days of the vacancy.

The succession plan would kick in if there are nine or more simultaneous vacancies in the Senate, and 25 or more in the Assembly.

The Senate passed a bill last week to create the provisions for legislative meetings in case of emergency, but the succession plan was nixed before the bill came to the Senate floor.


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