Posted at 12:10 p.m. on June 10, 2021
The Brillion News
MADISON – The Wisconsin state Senate approved four bills on Wednesday, June 9, focused on accountability with and for police.
The bills are part of the Public Safety PACT package authored by Senators Van Wanggaard, R-Racine, Lena Taylor, D-Milwaukee, and Alberta Darling, R-River Hills.
Legislators, law enforcement officers, and reform advocates all had input into the legislation.
PACT is an acronym for Police Accountability, Community involvement and Transparency and is designed to improve policing in Wisconsin.
The bills passed by the Senate largely focused on accountability. They were:
• Senate Bill 119 – The “Fund the Police” bill. This bill reduces a municipality’s Shared Revenue payment if the municipality defunds the police. Every Republican voted in favor of Senate Bill 119. Every Democrat voted against the “Fund the Police” bill.
• Senate Bill 120 – Which requires police officers report excessive use of force and provides officers with whistleblower protection. This bill passed the Senate 31-2.
• Senate Bill 121 – Which prohibits a use of force policy to authorize chokeholds except in selfdefense or life threatening situations. This bill passed the Senate on a voice vote.
• Senate Bill 199 – Which prohibits a police officers from engaging in sexual conduct with individuals in their custody. This bill was authored by Senator Taylor, with Senator Wanggaard second, and passed the Senate on a voice vote.
The PACT bills now go to the State Assembly for action.
Last month, the State Senate passed four additional bills, Senate Bills 117 and 122, 123, 124, focusing on community involvement and transparency. Each of those bills passed the tate senate on bipartisan votes.