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Governor signs bill strengthening drunk driving laws, 11 others

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MADISON, Wis. -- Gov. Tony Evers signed 12 bills into law on Friday, including one that toughens the states laws against drunk driving.

The new law increases the mandatory minimum sentence for fifth and sixth offense OWI convictions from six months to 18 months in prison.

“Too many Wisconsinites have experienced the consequences of drunk driving firsthand and it continues to be a concerning issue across our state,” Evers said. “It’s an important issue, and we have work to do to combat drunk driving so we can keep our communities safe.”

Another new law creates requirements for the use of police body cameras and establishes the requirements for releasing the video as public record.

Evers also signed the bill that ratifies the raises and benefits negotiated for State Patrol troopers.

“State troopers work tirelessly to keep our communities safe and secure, often working long days with little gratitude,” Evers said. “This is an overdue and well-deserved raise that shows our appreciation for their hard work.”

A list of other bills signed by the governor on Friday is available below.

Assembly Bill 633, now 2019 Wisconsin Act 105: Allows a law enforcement agency to contract with another law enforcement agency, ambulance service provider, or a third-party vendor to transport an individual for emergency detention.

Assembly Bill 222, now 2019 Wisconsin Act 107: Provides a technical fix to 2017 Wisconsin Act 172 to allow that act’s “four strikes and you’re out” policy revoking the license of an individual convicted of a fourth or subsequent OWI offense to be implemented as intended.

Assembly Bill 47, now 2019 Wisconsin Act 109: Creates a new process and standards for appointing a guardian of a child and creates four types of guardianship, including full, limited, temporary, and emergency.

Assembly Bill 49, now 2019 Wisconsin Act 110: Provides the Board of Commissioners of Public Lands the authority to contract with and to compensate the State of Wisconsin Investment Board for the investment of school trust fund moneys.

Senate Bill 70, now 2019 Wisconsin Act 111: Makes it a class I felony for any person to bring contraband into a jail or prison with the intent of keeping the object for themselves, in addition to the already established prohibition on bringing contraband into a jail with the intent of providing it to another person.

Assembly Bill 804, now 2019 Wisconsin Act 112: Enhances the penalty for victim intimidation from a Class A misdemeanor to a Class G felony, if the underlying crime is an alleged act of domestic abuse.

Assembly Bill 86, now 2019 Wisconsin Act 113: Provides the governing bodies of towns with multiple means to obtain financial protection in the case of malfeasance on the part of designated municipal officials by allowing towns the option to either require municipal judges to execute and file an official bond or obtain dishonesty insurance for a judge.

Assembly Bill 691, now 2019 Wisconsin Act 114: Requires that assessor’s notices of changed assessments to a property owner include language that specifies that the assessor may not change the assessment of property solely based on the recent sale of that property without adjusting the assessed value of comparable properties in the same market area.

Assembly Bill 704, now 2019 Wisconsin Act 115: Changes the requirements for the operation of a motorboat by requiring the parent, guardian, or adult accompanying a minor to hold a valid boating safety certificate, if they were born after January 1, 1989; and allows a person who was born on or after January 1, 1989 and is at least 16 years of age to operate a motorboat only if he or she holds a valid boating safety certificate or is accompanied by a person that meet the requirements above.

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