Mining Bill will be voted on in Committee February 6

This afternoon Wisconsin State Senator Tom Tiffany and Rep. Mary Williams announced an Executive Session in both Senate and Assembly Committees taking up SB/AB1 (The Mining Bill).

The Assembly Committee will take up The Mining Bill in Executive Session:

Wednesday, February 6, 2013
10:00 AM
417 North (GAR Hall)

The Senate Committee will take up the Mining Bill the same day:

Wednesday, February 6, 2013
10:00 AM
201 Southeast

The Executive Session will occur three days prior to the hearing scheduled in Ashland by Senator Bob Jauch and Rep Janet Bewley, who serve constituents that would be directly impacted by a Taconite mine in the Penokee Range. That hearing is scheduled for Saturday, February 9 at the AmericInn in Ashland.

No “official” hearing is scheduled in the region, and based on the scheduled Committee hearings and likely vote to message to the full legislative bodies, the current mining bill appears to be fast tracked in spite of significant technical and legal issues with the bill as written.

A representative in Mary Williams’ office confirmed to Badger Democracy this afternoon that the bill would be voted on to refer out of committee on February 6.


UPDATE:Jauch recall effort led by Shirl LaBarre, friend of Gogebic Taconite

The Hayward resident leading the recall effort against State Senator Bob Jauch (D-Poplar) has run unsuccessfully as a Republican for the Assembly in 2006, 2008, and 2010. Shirl LaBarre is acting as spokesperson for the Northern Citizens for Responsible Government (CRG), a conservative group involved in recent Spring recall efforts against State Senate Democrats. LaBarre has also recently served as GOP County Chair in Sawyer County.

LaBarre states the reason for the recall effort as Senator Jauch “dragging his feet”, and being responsible for the slow progress of the Gogebic Taconite mine development in his district.

Most notable is the direct financial connection between LaBarre, and Gogebic Taconite. Three Executives from Gogebic gave the maximum individual contribution to an Assembly candidate in 2010 to Shirl LaBarre in a failed campaign. According to records at Wisconsin Democracy Campaign, the three contributed a combined $1,500 to LaBarre’s campaign for Assembly.

Badger Democracy will be posting an in-depth analysis of the bill, and the ties to ALEC, Koch Industries, and Wisconsin GOP leadership later this evening.