Legislative Issues

State and local regulations and proposals.

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An Organization of Professional Property Owners.
Southern Wisconsin Landlords Association
Providing education and assistance to
Racine area real estate investors since 1988
.

A member of The Wisconsin Apartment Association.

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Our Next Meeting:


SWLA meetings are open to all landlords


Monthly every third Monday

6:00pm Social Time

Light meal

($5.00 per person)

6:30pm Meeting Time

Non Members First meeting FREE

$20 Fee for each subsequent meeting

Applied to membership fee when you join


SPECIAL MEETING

Wednesday, March 14, is Legislative Day. We need you to join us in Madison for a Fun Educational Day. PLEASE join us.


Regular Meetings


March 19

April 16

May 21

June 18

Meeting Location:

Harbor Lite Yacht Club

559 State Street
Racine, WI 53402
(262) 634-9280

More on meetings

EDUCATION

2018 WAA Spring Landlord Education and Trade Show

https://www.waaonline.org/conference/2018-waa-spring-landlord-education-day-trade-show

FREE Landlord/Crime Free Multi-Housing Rental Seminar

Presented in partnership by the Kenosha Police Department
& the Kenosha Landlord Association

To register for an upcoming seminar please contact
the Kenosha Police Department Crime Prevention Unit
watch@kenoshapolice.com

or

(262)-657-3937

“Free landlord training in Milwaukee"

(NOT the class by Tristan Pettit)

The award-winning Landlord Training Program operates out of the Department of Neighborhood Services (DNS) downtown location.Its goal is to teach landlords fundamental ways to keep illegal activity out of their property, and how to manage it if/when nuisance activity does appear. Considerable focus is also applied to operating according to the codes,laws and government directives that apply to rental properties as well as tried-and-true practices aimed at minimizing conflict and damage in area neighborhoods. This program was a runner-up for the Ford Foundation Harvard Kennedy School of Government Awards program, and a 1996 winner of the Innovations In Government award sponsored by the City of Milwaukee Mayor and Common Council.

The classes are FREE, and held on a regular basis throughout the year at various locations to include local libraries. They are also held on evenings and weekends to accommodate virtually anyone's schedule. The classes are generally either one (1) five-hour session in one day, or two (2) 2.5-hour sessions over two evenings. Attendees get a free100-page comprehensive manual, and handouts on a variety of legal and business issues related to managing property. Each class also includes professional guest speakers ranging from Court Commissioners and City Attorneys totowing companiesand pest control.

RecentEvents:

The lastest legislative news.

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6-17-13

https://docs.legis.wisconsin.gov/2013/proposals/ab183 

The Wisconsin State Assembly on Thursday, June 6 passed AB183 relating to various landlord-tenant laws on a party line vote, 57-37.  Three legislators (the same as in May) abstained from voting.  It was referred by Senate Majority Leader Scott Fitzgerald to the Senate Committee on Insurance and Housing, chaired by State Senator Frank Lasee.  

On Wednesday, June 5, the Senate Committee on Insurance and Housing held a public hearing on the Senate companion bill to AB183, SB 179.  Dale Hicks and I attended the hearing, with Dale registering in favor of the bill on behalf of WRHLC.  We were very happy to see Nan Rozelle and Todd Hermsen there from the Fox Valley Apartment Association as well.  They both spoke in favor.  

 

What Comes Next

At this point, no date has yet been set for a Senate Committee vote, but a decision on amendments will be announced very soon.  It appears that a new Senate amendment will need to be offered for Sen. Lasee to get the votes to move the bill out of committee. I will be sending out an "alert" once I find out what will be done.  There are danger points lurking in the process and folks are trying to avoid those as best they can. 

The Legislature only recesses on June 28.  It does not adjourn.  They recess for July and August. They stay in session until April 2014.  If the bill is not adopted before June 26, its chances of adoption still remain very high.

 

6-5-13 

Action This Week on AB 183 and SB 179 on Landlord-Tenant Laws The Wisconsin Assembly will be in session on Thursday, June 6th. On the agenda is final action on AB 183. It is expected to pass pretty much on a party line vote. It will be sent to the Senate Committee on Insurance and Housing, chaired by Senator Frank Lasee.

 

In the meantime, Senator Lasee is holding a public hearing on the Senate companion bill to AB 183. That bill is SB 179. Here's the notice, with the details of the hearing:

Senate PUBLIC HEARING Committee on Insurance and Housing The committee will hold a public hearing on the following items at the time specified below:

Wednesday, June 5, 2013, 10:30 AM in Room 330 Southwest of the State Capitol.

Senate Bill 179-Relating to: miscellaneous provisions related to rental and vehicle towing practices and eviction proceedings, prohibitions on enacting ordinances that place certain limitations or requirements on landlords, providing an exemption from emergency rule procedures, granting rule-making authority.

By Senators Lasee and Schultz; cosponsored by Representatives Stroebel, Pridemore, Jacque, Kerkman and Bies.

 

WRHLC to Support Change to Historic Rehabilitation Tax Credit Here's one of the bill's we have taken a position in support.  AB 147 has already had a public hearing and been voted on favorably by the Committee on Tourism on May 29th.

2013 ASSEMBLY BILL 147

April 15, 2013  Introduced by Representatives WEININGER, JACQUE, SCHRAA, BERCEAU, JORGENSEN, T. LARSON, MASON, OHNSTAD, SPIROS, ENDSLEY, WRIGHT and GENRICH, cosponsored by Senators GUDEX, L. TAYLOR, LASSA, LEHMAN, HARRIS and SCHULTZ. Referred to Committee on Tourism.

 

AN ACT to renumber and amend 71.07 (9m) (a), 71.07 (9m) (c), 71.28 (6) (a), 71.28 (6) (c), 71.47 (6) (a) and 71.47 (6) (c); and to create 71.07 (9m) (a) 2., 71.07(9m) (a) 3., 71.07 (9m) (c) 2., 71.07 (9m) (h), 71.28 (6) (a) 2., 71.28 (6) (a) 3., 71.28(6) (c) 2., 71.28 (6) (h), 71.47 (6) (a) 2., 71.47 (6) (a) 3., 71.47 (6) (c) 2. and 71.47(6) (h) of the statutes; relating to: increasing the amount of the supplement to 6   the federal historic rehabilitation tax credit.

 

Analysis by the Legislative Reference Bureau Under current law, a person may claim an income and franchise tax credit for 5 percent of the qualified rehabilitation expenditures, as defined under the federal Internal Revenue Code, for certified historic structures on property located in this state, if construction begins after December 31, 1988, and the rehabilitated property is placed in service after June 30, 1989. The credit is a supplement to the federal tax credit for 20 percent of the qualified rehabilitation expenditures for certified historic structures. The federal credit, and the supplemental state credit, apply to nonresidential real property and residential rental property.

 

Under this bill, a person may claim an income and franchise tax credit for 20 percent of the qualified rehabilitation expenses, as defined under the federal Internal Revenue Code, for certified historic structures on property located in this state, if the cost of the person’s qualified rehabilitation expenditures is at least $50,000 and the rehabilitated property is placed in service after December 31, 2012, and before January 1, 2023. The bill also allows a person to claim a credit equal to 5 percent of the qualified rehabilitation expenses for qualified rehabilitated buildings, as defined under the federal Internal Revenue Code, located in this state. The credit is similar to the federal credit for rehabilitating a building that was first placed in service before 1936, except that the federal credit is 10 percent of the qualified rehabilitation expenses.

 

Under the bill, the Department of Revenue, in conjunction with the State Historical Society, must submit a report to the Joint Committee on Finance (JCF), no later than June 30, 2018, describing the economic impact of the tax credits and making a recommendation as to whether the tax credits should continue. The recommendation, however, may be implemented only upon approval of JCF.

 

 

Another Bill to Support:  One- and Two-Family Dwelling Code Here is another bill WRHLC supports.  AB 77 was passed by the Assembly on May 14, 2013 by a voice vote.  It is currently in the Senate Organization Committee.  There is a Senate companion bill, SB 72, that has already had a public hearing by the Senate Committee on Insurance and Housing.  It may be possible for the Senate to act directly on AB 77 during the month of June, because it has already had a public hearing on the measure. We have developed a good solid working relationship with the Builders. Copied in below is a Legislative Council memo that explains the bill, and an amendment that was adopted by the full Assembly.

 

2013 ASSEMBLY BILL 77

Wisconsin Legislative Council Amendment Memo Under current law, the Dwelling Code Council (Council) must review the standards and rules for the Uniform Dwelling Code (UDC), which applies to the construction of one- and two-family dwellings. Current law specifies that the Council must, upon its own initiative or at the request of the Department of Safety and Professional Services (DSPS), consider and make recommendations to DSPS pertaining to the UDC. Current law does not require the Council to prepare a report of its recommendations.

 

Under current law, DSPS is required to review the UDC every two years. Assembly Bill 77 requires the Council to prepare a report containing its review of, and recommendations pertaining to, the UDC once every six years. The bill specifies that the first report must be completed no later than one year after the bill is enacted. The bill also requires DSPS to assist the Council in preparing the report. Assembly Amendment 1 (AA 1) adds a provision that requires DSPS to review the UDC once every three years, rather than once every two years as required under current law.

 

Bill History

AA 1 was offered by Representative Jagler on April 24, 2013. On May 9, 2013, the Assembly Committee on Housing and Real Estate voted to recommend adoption of AA 1 on a vote of Ayes, 8; Noes, 0, and to recommend passage of the bill, as amended, on a vote of Ayes, 1; Noes, 1.

 

 

New Bill on Landlord Access to Tenants' Personal Internet Accounts Here's a new bill that had a public hearing last week that targets the privacy of personal Internet accounts by employers, educational institutions and landlords.  The public hearing came up very quickly – the bill was introduced on Friday, May 24th and the hearing was on Wednesday, May 29th.  Here's the LRB analysis:

2013 ASSEMBLY BILL 218

May 24, 2013  Introduced by Representatives SARGENT, BIES, BARCA, BARNES, BERCEAU, BERNARD SCHABER, BEWLEY, BILLINGS, CLARK, DANOU, DOYLE, GENRICH, GOYKE, HEBL, HESSELBEIN, HINTZ, HULSEY, JOHNSON, JORGENSEN, KAHL, KESSLER, KOLSTE, MASON, MILROY, OHNSTAD, A. OTT, PASCH, POPE, RICHARDS, RIEMER, RINGHAND, SINICKI, SMITH, C. TAYLOR, VRUWINK, WACHS, WRIGHT, YOUNG, ZAMARRIPA, ZEPNICK, BERNIER and JAGLER, cosponsored by Senators GROTHMAN, LEHMAN, LASEE, ERPENBACH, HANSEN, HARRIS, C. LARSON, MILLER, RISSER and L. TAYLOR. Referred to Committee on Government Operations and State Licensing.

 

AN ACT to amend 111.322 (2m) (a) and 111.322 (2m) (b); and to create 106.54(10), 111.91 (2) (im) and 995.55 of the statutes; relating to: employer access to, and observation of, the personal Internet accounts of employees and applicants for employment; educational institution access to, and observation of, the personal Internet accounts of students and prospective students; landlord access to, and observation of, the personal Internet accounts of tenants and prospective tenants; and providing a penalty.

 

Analysis by the Legislative Reference Bureau Current law does not regulate employer access to, or observation of, the personal Internet accounts of employees and applicants for employment, or educational institution access to, or observation of, the personal Internet accounts of students and prospective students, or landlord access to, or observation of, the personal Internet accounts of tenants and prospective tenants.

 

This bill prohibits an employer, educational institution, or landlord from: 1) requesting an employee, applicant for employment, student, prospective student, tenant, or prospective tenant to grant access to, allow observation of, or disclose information that allows access to or observation of the personal Internet account of the employee, applicant, student, prospective student, tenant, or prospective tenant; and 2) discharging, expelling, suspending, disciplining, or otherwise penalizing or discriminating against any person for exercising the right to refuse such a a request, opposing such a a practice, filing a complaint or attempting to enforce that right, or testifying or assisting in any action or proceeding to enforce that right. The bill, however, permits an employer, educational institution, or landlord to view, access, or use information about an employee, applicant for employment, student, prospective student, tenant, or prospective tenant that can be obtained with  out access information or that is available from the public domain. The bill also permits an employer or educational institution to request or require an employee or student to disclose access information to the employer or educational institution in order for the employer or educational institution to gain access to or operate an electronic communications device paid for in whole or in part by the employer or educational institution or to gain access to an account or service that is provided by the employer or educational institution, that the employee or student obtained by virtue of the employment relationship or admission to the educational institution, or that is used for business or educational purposes.

 

The bill, in addition, permits an employer to do any of the following:

1. Discharge or discipline an employee for transferring the employer’s proprietary or confidential information or financial data to the employee’s personal Internet account without the employer’s authorization.

2. Conduct an investigation or require an employee to cooperate in an investigation of any alleged unauthorized transfer of the employer’s proprietary or confidential information or financial data to the employee’s personal Internet account or of any other alleged employmentrelated misconduct or violation of the law.

3. Restrict or prohibit an employee’s access to certain Internet sites while using an electronic communications device paid for in whole or in part by the employer or while using the employer’s network or other resources.

4. Monitor, review, or access electronic data that is stored on an electronic communications device paid for in whole or in part by the employer or electronic data that is traveling through or stored on the employer’s network.

5. Comply with a duty to screen applicants for employment prior to hiring that is established under state or federal law or by a selfregulatory organization, as defined under the federal Securities and Exchange Act of 1934 (selfregulatory organization).

6. Requesting or requiring an employee to disclose the employee’s personal electronic mail address.

 

In addition, with respect to an employer, the bill provides that the prohibition created under the bill does not apply to a personal Internet account or an electronic communications device of an employee engaged in providing financial services who uses the account or device to conduct the business of an employer that is subject to the content, supervision, and retention requirements imposed by federal securities laws and regulations or by a selfregulatory organization.

 

Finally, the bill provides that an employer, educational institution, or landlord does not have a duty to search or monitor the activity of any personal Internet account and that an employer, educational institution, or landlord is not liable for any failure to request or require access to or observation of a personal Internet account of an employee, applicant for employment, student, prospective student, tenant, or prospective tenant.

 

For purposes of the bill: 1) "access information" means a user name and password, login information, or any other security information that protects access to a personal Internet account; 2) "educational institution" means an institution of higher education, a technical college, a proprietary school, a public school, a charter school, a private school, or a private educational testing service or administrator; 3) "employer" includes the state; and 4) "personal Internet account" means an account created and used exclusively for personal purposes within a bounded system established by an Internet-based service that requires a user to input or store access information via an electronic device in order to view, create, use, or edit the user’s account information, profile, display, communications, or stored data.

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