Some Democrats, such as state senator Julie Lassa and leader of the Assembly's Democrats Peter Barca, are claiming that the vote Wednesday night on the budget repair bill violated the state's Open Meetings Law because the senate did not give 24 hours notice before convening. But Wisconsin's Senate Chief Clerk, who offers non-partisan parliamentary and legal advice to the chamber, sent out a note tonight saying that the vote was above board. "[T]he notice appears to have satisfied the requirements of the rules and statutes," according to Senate Chief Clerk Rob Marchant.
Majority Leader Scott Fitzgerald's office passed along an email tonight that included Marchant's statement:
Tonight's Conference Committee was properly noticed. From the Senate Chief Clerk, Rob Marchant:
FYI . . .
There was some discussion today about the notice provided for the legislature's conference committee. In special session, under Senate Rule 93, no advance notice is required other than posting on the legislative bulletin board. Despite this rule, it was decided to provide a 2 hour notice by posting on the bulletin board. My staff, as a courtesy, emailed a copy of the notice to all legisaltive offices at 4:10, which gave the impression that the notice may have been slightly less than 2 hours. Either way, the notice appears to have satisfied the requirements of the rules and statutes.
I thought you might find this information to be useful.