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Your Business Advocate: Legislature Tackles Housing Issues

 Yesterday, both houses of the legislature passed a series of bills designed to address the housing shortage in Wisconsin. While there is no silver bullet to fix this crisis, we believe these bills are a step in the right direction to break the logjam. The Chamber will continue to work with our partners across the region to ensure affordable housing is readily available to current residents and those we’re trying to attract. We look forward to continuing to work with the REALTORS Association of Northeast Wisconsin on these issues. 

  • SB 296/AB 266, authored by Senator Stroebel and Representative Krug – relating to judicial review of local government decisions. This bill affectionately known as the NIMBY bill to increase certainty and predictability in the development-approval process.  
  • SB 297/AB 267, authored by Senator Stroebel and Representative Penterman – relating to Wisconsin Housing and Economic Development Authority (WHEDA) program to fund low-interest loans for the rehabilitation of certain residential properties created under 2021 Wis. Act 221.  
  • SB 293/AB 264, authored by Senator Quinn and Representative Armstrong – relating to residential infrastructure revolving loans to provide funding for streets, sewer, water, sidewalks, etc. to service new residential development.  
  • SB 294/AB 265, authored by Senator Jagler and Representative Hurd – relating to main street rehabilitation revolving loans to help repair and rehabilitate residential rental housing above an existing building with a commercial use on the main floor.  
  • SB 295/AB 268, authored by Senator Feyen and Representative Summerfield – relating to vacant commercial-to-housing conversion revolving loans to fund the redevelopment of vacant commercial buildings into new residential work force housing.  


Evers Threatens Budget Veto over UW Funding 

Also, this week, the Joint Committee on Finance was slated to take up the University of Wisconsin System budget. While Governor Evers had proposed an increase of hundreds of millions of dollars to their budget, Speaker Vos proposed cutting their budget by $30 million – the amount the system currently spends on DEI staff. 

After Vos’s announcement, JFC delayed action on the budget to continue negotiations. Evers then announced yesterday that he would veto the entire budget if the cut moved forward. The committee is back in action today to address the budgets of the Departments of Children and Families, Health Services, and Military Affairs.