State Senator Van Wanggaard's eNewsletter 2017
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Crime Victm's Rights Move Forward


On Thursday, I held a hearing on Marsy’s Law, which will expand the constitutional rights of victims in Wisconsin. For a long time, Wisconsin has been recognized as a leader in victims’ rights. Unfortunately, since we first adopted our constitutional amendment in 1993, Wisconsin has fallen nationally.
I have authored Senate Joint Resolution 53, to elevate the rights of victims so that in the eyes of the law, the rights of a victim are equal to a defendant. A victim should have a voice in in the judicial process, and the right to be treated fairly, and with dignity and respect. A criminal should not be able to harass a victim throughout the legal process. This legislation will help prevent criminals from re victimizing their victims. 
Marsy’s Law has the support of every major law enforcement agency in the state, along with Attorney General Schmiel, and most district attorneys. I plan to pass this bill in the Fall, and it could be before voters as soon as April 2019.

Credit Card Skimming Bill Passes Senate and Assembly

On Wednesday, June 14th, the Senate passed Senate Bill 133 which creates penalties for possession of or use of a credit card “skimmer” and provides civil immunity for gas stations who use scanners for payment of fuel.  Credit card skimming is a type of theft which utilizes a small device to steal an individual’s personal credit or debit card information from their card’s magnetic strip during a transaction, such as using an ATM or purchasing gas at the pump. 

In recent years, credit card skimming has become increasingly popular across the country, including in Racine and Kenosha counties.  Often the victims of this scam are unaware their personal information has been stolen, until it is too late.  Thieves use the information in a variety of ways, including identity theft and fraudulent purchase of goods and services.  Wisconsin is one of only 19 states that does not have a law specifically penalizing the possession or use of the skimming devices.  But not for long.

On Wednesday, the Assembly also passed credit skimming legislation.  The legislation now heads to the Governor to be signed into law.

3.1% Unemployment: Lowest Since October 1999

Second-Lowest Rate on Record for Wisconsin

According to the Wisconsin Department of Workforce Development, the state unemployment rate fell to 3.1 percent in May, down 0.1 percent from last month.  This is the second-lowest unemployment rate on record for Wisconsin, with the lowest at 3.0 from May-July 1999.  Wisconsin's January to May unemployment rate decline of 0.8 percent in 2017 is the steepest January to May decline since 1983. The full report can be found: Click here.

Veterans Day: One Step Closer to Being a State Holiday

On Wednesday, June 14th the Senate passed Senate Bill 113 making November 11th an official state holiday.  Currently, Wisconsin is the only state that does not legally recognizing it as such.  The measure must pass the Assembly before getting to the Governor's Desk.

Veterans have done so much for so many, which is why it is important we extend a helping hand to those who need it.  The Veterans Outreach of Wisconsin is doing just that.  On Tuesday, June 13th, I visited with Jeff Gustin, the Executive Director of the Veterans Outreach of Wisconsin in Racine.  This program is dedicated to giving a hand up to men and women who defended our freedoms. 

They are currently establishing the James A. Peterson Veteran Village, which is a transitional housing program for homeless Veterans.  The Village will be made up of 15 tiny homes and a large community center.  Each Veteran will live for free in their own tiny home and use the shared facilities within the community center.  More information regarding the organization can be found at:

Happy Father's Day


Happy Father's Day to my dad, Dr. Herluf Wanggaard, retired Lieutenant Colonel, he would have been 100 this year.  Miss you Dad!

Adjournment Honors

On June 14, 2017, I was honored to adjourn in honor of my late father-in-law, John J. Mizer, on the 29th anniversary of his passing. A Korean War veteran, forward observer and bronze star recipient, his passing on Flag Day 1988 was synonymous with his love of country and family. Miss you, dad!

I also adjourned in honor of Jeffery Van Koningsveld, a friend from childhood, who passed away this week. He was active in the Racine community supporting high school and youth sports activities. Jeff also served as the Racine County Democratic Chair. Although we did not always agree politically, he is a friend that will be missed by many.

In the District

On Monday, June 12th, Representative Kerkman and I had the honor of presenting Mrs. Vida Terry with a Legislative citation recognizing her impressive public service, including 53 years of service to the Town of Brighton.  Great job Vida!

Photo: Supervisor Sue Crane, Representative Samantha Kerkman, Mrs. Vida Terry, myself, Chairman John Kiel, and Supervisor Andy Wright.
Issue 75
Friday, June 16, 2017
Me and Jeff Gustin, Executive Director of Veterans Outreach of Wisconsin.

Connect with Van:


State Senator Van
21st Senate District 

Wisconsin State Capitol 
P.O. Box 7882
Madison, Wisconsin 53707
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Local Events

Burlington Farmers Market
Wehmhoff Square Park on Washington and Pine Streets
3-7pm every Thursday

Ironman 70.3 Racine Triathlon
North Beach, Racine
July 16th

Kenosha County Dairy Breakfast
Daniel's Dairy Farm
1077 248th Ave
Kansasville, WI
June 17th

EVP Beach Sports Festival
North Beach, Racine
June 17-18th

Racine County Dairy Breakfast
Bird Family Farm
22502 Washington Ave
Kansasville, WI
June 24th

Racine Zoo
2131 North Main St.
Daily, 9 am - 4:30 pm

If you would like to add an event to the Local Events calendar, please send information to:
Copyright © 2017 Senator Van Wanggaard, All rights reserved.

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