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    Wisconsin Judge Expands TRO, Prohibits Implementation of Budget Bill

    Wisconsin Judge Expands TRO, Prohibits Implementation of Budget Bill

    Based on reports from inside Judge Sumi’s courtroom, it appears that she has issued an expanded TRO ruling that the budget bill is not in effect and was not “published” as required, and enjoins further implementation.

    Correction: Per local news reporter, initial reports that Judge found law not in effect were not correct. But TRO continues to prohibit Secretary of State from publishing, so it appears she is viewing the bill as not in effect yet, even if she did not explicitly rule.

    Updates:  Per JSOnline:

    A Dane County judge Tuesday blocked the state from implementing Gov. Scott Walker’s collective bargaining bill.

    “Further implementation of the act is enjoined,” said Dane County Judge Maryann Sumi.

    She noted her original restraining order issued earlier this month was clear in saying that the state should not proceed with implementing the law. The Walker administration did so after the bill was published Friday by a state agency not included in Sumi’s earlier temporary restraining order.

    “Apparently that language was either misunderstood or ignored, but what I said was the further implementation of Act 10 was enjoined. That is what I now want to make crystal clear,” she said.

    She noted she has not yet found that lawmakers violated the open meetings law, but noted the Legislature could resolve the matter by passing the bill again.

    The Amended TRO now is available.  It is only two pages long, and apparently was prepared as to form by the Democrats (this is common in court cases that one side prepares the form of order), because Judge Sumi struck out the portion as to publication:

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    I suspect that Sumi thought she would do her duty as a Democrat by ruling for the Dems on the meager issue of the two hour notice and the issue would never reappear in her court and be decided by the appeals courts. By moving ahead yo implement the law while the first-level appelate court dodged the case altogether, Walker left Dems no choice but to go back to her. At this point, i think she is just trying to appease them. The the lack of rhyme or reason to her rulings.

    @J. E. Burke actually, she has not expressly ruled on the open public meetings issue, but is instead dangling it politically in front of the Republicans, trying to taunt them into backing down and "repassing" the bill.

    She has only issued injunctive relief to stop the requirement of publication as a condition precedent to enactment, and has thereby prevented the law from going into effect.

    But I think you may be correct that she miscalculated the effect of her first ruling, and not just because her order failed to include the potential for Legislative Research Bureau publication within its scope.

    I'd agree that she probably did not anticipate that the Appeals court would punt; that the Administration would rely on any form of publication other than the Sec'y of State (i.e., the LRB publication); and that the Ds would thereby essentially be forced to go back to her.

    Regarding the Open Public Meetings issue:

    From their Open Public Meetings Law – –

    Wis. Stat. § 19.87(2) says:

    19.87 Legislative meetings. This subchapter shall apply to all meetings of the senate and assembly and the committees, subcommittees and other subunits thereof, except that:
    . . .
    (2) No provision of this subchapter which conflicts with a rule of the senate or assembly or joint rule of the legislature shall apply to a meeting conducted in compliance with such rule.
    . . . .

    Ooooops! Could be that's why she is not ruling on the issue, but only blustering about it instead.


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