Governor Evers vetoed two bills today that would have improved public safety in Wisconsin. The bills, authored by Senator Van Wanggaard (R-Racine) would have improved community oversight of the Milwaukee Police Department (Senate Bill 117), and defined and criminalized rioting in Wisconsin (Senate Bill 296).

“We’ve seen time and again that Governor Evers will talk a good game when it comes to improving public safety,” said Wanggaard. “Governor Evers loves to throw his federal COVID money at problems, but when it comes to actually doing something to improve public safety or increase community oversight in Madison and Milwaukee it’s a ‘hard no.’”

Senate Bill 296, would have cleaned up Wisconsin statutes to define and criminalize rioting in Wisconsin. The language in Senate Bill 296 closely follows similar laws in other states. Senate Bill 117 would have increased community involvement and oversight on the Milwaukee Fire and Police Commission (MFPC) and the Madison Police and Fire Commissions. This bill was a bipartisan effort of reform created after years of dysfunction on the MFPC.

“These bills are common sense,” Wanggaard said. “After the rioting in 2020, we saw the need to strengthen our laws in that area. Those riots in 2020 sought more oversight of police in Milwaukee and Madison, Senate Bill 117 does that. Instead, Governor Evers chose to protect the status quo and undermine public safety. It’s not surprising, but it’s still disappointing.”

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