2001 - 2002 LEGISLATURE
February 27, 2002 - Introduced by Representatives Meyerhofer, Ott, Plouff,
Hines, Gronemus, Pettis, J. Lehman
and Jeskewitz, cosponsored by Senators
Baumgart, M. Meyer and Burke. Referred to Committee on Labor and
Workforce Development.
AB874,1,9 1An Act to repeal 101.87 (3); to renumber 101.80 (1) and 101.80 (2); to
2renumber and amend
101.865 (1), 101.87 (1) and 101.87 (2); to amend
3subchapter IV (title) of chapter 101 [precedes 101.80], 101.84 (2), 101.86 (1) (a),
4101.88 (1) and 101.88 (3); to repeal and recreate 101.87 (title); and to create
5101.80 (2m), (3) and (4), 101.80 (6), 101.80 (9), 101.80 (10), 101.865 (1) (c),
6101.866, 101.87 (1) (c), 101.87 (1) (d) (intro.), 101.87 (1) (f) 3. and 4., 101.87 (2)
7(b), 101.87 (3m) and 101.875 of the statutes; relating to: licensing of
8electricians and electrical contractors, regulation of electrical construction,
9granting rule-making authority, and providing a penalty.
Analysis by the Legislative Reference Bureau
Under current law, the department of commerce (department) must administer
a program for certifying electrical contractors and master, journeyman, and
beginning electricians. However, current law does not require a person who works
as an electrician or electrical contractor to be certified by the department. A city,
village, town, or county, though, may enact an ordinance requiring this certification
or requiring the electrician or contractor to obtain a license from the municipality.
With certain exceptions, this bill requires every person who performs electrical
construction in this state to be licensed by the department as a master, journeyman,

or beginning electrician. This bill also requires electrical contractors to be licensed
by the department. In addition, the bill requires an electrical contractor to maintain
a bond in the amount of at least $5,000 and to obtain liability insurance in specified
amounts. The bill prohibits a municipality from imposing an additional bonding
requirement upon any electrical contractor who satisfies the bonding requirements
under the bill. The bill specifies several persons who are exempt from the licensing,
bonding, and insurance requirements, including certain individuals who perform
work on their own residences, persons working for public utilities, certain
maintenance electricians, elevator and escalator technicians, persons who install or
maintain low voltage systems and equipment, alarm system contractors, and certain
communications technicians. The bill requires the department to promulgate rules
to administer the licensing program and specifies requirements with regard to
supervision at work sites, qualifications for licensure, and other matters. The bill
retains municipal authority to regulate electrical construction, provided the
municipal ordinance is not less restrictive than the statutes and meets the minimum
requirements of the department's rules.
Current law requires every electrical contractor and other person who does any
electric wiring in this state to comply with the department's rules and requires the
company furnishing the electric current to obtain proof of compliance before
furnishing the current. Under current law, this proof may be in the form of a
certificate furnished by a electrical inspector or, if there is no electrical inspector, a
written statement furnished by the electrical contractor or other person doing the
This bill, instead, requires every electrical contractor to ensure that all
electrical construction the contractor undertakes complies with the rules of the
department. The bill retains the requirement that the company supplying electric
current obtain proof of compliance. However, under the bill, the proof must be a
certificate of an electrical inspector certified by the department, indicating that the
electrical construction is in compliance. The bill also requires the property owner to
obtain proof of compliance from a certified inspector indicating that the electrical
construction is sufficient for occupancy.
For further information see the state and local fiscal estimate, which will be
printed as an appendix to this bill.
The people of the state of Wisconsin, represented in senate and assembly, do
enact as follows:
AB874, s. 1 1Section 1. Subchapter IV (title) of chapter 101 [precedes 101.80] of the
2statutes is amended to read:
AB874,2,33 CHAPTER 101
5 electrical
AB874, s. 2 8Section 2. 101.80 (1) of the statutes is renumbered 101.80 (5).
AB874, s. 3 9Section 3. 101.80 (2) of the statutes is renumbered 101.80 (8).
AB874, s. 4 10Section 4. 101.80 (2m), (3) and (4) of the statutes are created to read:
AB874,3,1311 101.80 (2m) "Apprentice electrician" means an apprentice under an electrician
12apprenticeship program that is operated in compliance with ch. 106 and recognized
13by the U.S. department of labor.
AB874,3,15 14(3) "Electrical construction" means the installing, altering, repairing,
15planning, or laying out of electrical wiring, apparatus, or equipment.
AB874,3,18 16(4) "Electrical contractor" means a person who undertakes or offers to
17undertake work that constitutes electrical construction or the supervision of
18electrical construction.
AB874, s. 5 19Section 5. 101.80 (6) of the statutes is created to read:
AB874,3,2220 101.80 (6) "Personal supervision" means oversight, by a master or journeyman
21electrician licensed by the department, of electrical construction being performed,
22such that the master or journeyman electrician:
AB874,3,2423 (a) Is present at the work site and provides personal supervision for the entire
24working day;
1(b) Is immediately available to the person performing the electrical
2construction at all times for assistance and direction;
AB874,4,33 (c) Reviews the electrical construction performed; and
AB874,4,64 (d) Is able to and does determine whether the electrical construction is
5performed in compliance with this subchapter and any applicable rules promulgated
6under this subchapter.
AB874, s. 6 7Section 6. 101.80 (9) of the statutes is created to read:
AB874,4,118 101.80 (9) "Residential property owner" means an individual who performs
9electrical construction on premises that the individual owns and occupies as a
10residence or owns and will occupy as a residence upon completion of the electrical
11construction or the construction of the residence.
AB874, s. 7 12Section 7. 101.80 (10) of the statutes is created to read:
AB874,4,1413 101.80 (10) "Wisconsin State Electrical Code" means the rules promulgated by
14the department under this subchapter.
AB874, s. 8 15Section 8. 101.84 (2) of the statutes is amended to read:
AB874,4,1916 101.84 (2) At the request of the owner or tenant, enter, inspect and examine
17the exterior and interior wiring of a public building or place of employment necessary
18to ascertain compliance with the rules promulgated under this subchapter
19Wisconsin State Electrical Code.
AB874, s. 9 20Section 9. 101.86 (1) (a) of the statutes is amended to read:
AB874,5,521 101.86 (1) (a) Exercise jurisdiction over electrical construction and inspection
22of electrical construction in public buildings and places of employment by passage
23of ordinances, providing such ordinances. Ordinances enacted under this paragraph
24may not be less restrictive than this subchapter and shall
meet the minimum
25requirements of the department's rules adopted under this subchapter Wisconsin

1State Electrical Code. No ordinance may require an electrical contractor who has
2filed a bond under s. 101.866 (1) (a) 3. to maintain a bond as a condition of the
3electrical contractor undertaking work in a municipality
. A county ordinance shall
4apply in any city, village or town within the county which has not enacted such an
AB874, s. 10 6Section 10. 101.865 (1) of the statutes is renumbered 101.865 (1) (a) and
7amended to read:
AB874,5,128 101.865 (1) (a) It is hereby made the duty of every Every electrical contractor
9and other person who does any electric wiring in this state to comply shall ensure
10that all electrical construction the electrical contractor undertakes complies
with the
11Wisconsin state electrical code, and the State Electrical Code or any more stringent
12requirements under an applicable municipal electrical code.
AB874,5,22 13(b) The company furnishing the electric current shall obtain proof of such
14compliance before furnishing such service; provided, that nothing therein contained
15shall be construed as prohibiting any municipality from making more stringent
16regulations than those contained in the Wisconsin state electrical code. Proof of such

17the electric current. The proof of compliance shall consist of a certificate furnished
18by a municipal or other recognized inspection department or officer, or if there is no
19such inspection department or officer it shall consist of a written statement
20furnished by the contractor or other person doing the wiring
an electrical inspector
21certified under s. 101.82 (2)
, indicating that there has been such the electrical
22construction is in
AB874, s. 11 23Section 11. 101.865 (1) (c) of the statutes is created to read:
AB874,6,324 101.865 (1) (c) The owner of the building shall obtain proof of compliance before
25occupying the building or permitting the building to be occupied. This proof of

1compliance shall consist of a certificate furnished by an electrical inspector certified
2under s. 101.82 (2), indicating that the electrical construction is in compliance and
3that the building, as it relates to electrical construction, is fit for occupancy.
AB874, s. 12 4Section 12. 101.866 of the statutes is created to read:
AB874,6,7 5101.866 Regulation of electricians and electrical contractors. (1) (a)
6Except as provided under sub. (3) and s. 101.87 (3m), no person may act as an
7electrical contractor in this state unless the person satisfies all of the following:
AB874,6,108 1. The person has an electrical contractor's license issued by the department.
9An electrical contractor's license does not authorize the licensee to physically
10perform electrical construction.
AB874,6,1711 2. The person is a master electrician licensed by the department or employs a
12master electrician licensed by the department who is responsible, under the terms
13of employment, for the performance and supervision of all electrical construction
14undertaken by the electrical contractor. If the electrical contractor employs a
15licensed master electrician, the licensed master electrician may not be employed as
16an electrician by any other electrical contractor or by any person described under
17sub. (3).
AB874,6,2318 3. The person files with the department, and maintains, a bond endorsed by a
19surety company authorized to do business in this state of not less than $5,000,
20conditioned upon the electrical contractor's ensuring that all electrical construction
21the electrical contractor undertakes complies with the Wisconsin State Electrical
22Code. The bond shall be for the benefit of persons damaged by reason of a failure to
23so comply.
AB874,7,1224 4. The person maintains either a policy of general liability insurance insuring
25the person in the amount of at least $100,000 per occurrence and $300,000 aggregate

1for bodily injury to or death of others because of electrical construction undertaken
2by the person, and a policy of insurance insuring the person in the amount of at least
3$25,000 for damage to property because of electrical construction undertaken by the
4person, or a policy of insurance insuring the person in the amount of at least $300,000
5per occurrence and $300,000 aggregate for damage to property and bodily injury to
6or death of others because of electrical construction undertaken by the person. Each
7policy of insurance shall be issued by an insurer authorized to do business in this
8state. The person shall file with the department a certificate, issued by the insurer,
9indicating that the person is in compliance with the applicable portion of this
10subdivision. An insurer may not cancel a policy of insurance that is the subject of
11such a certificate unless the insurer provides written notice of cancellation to the
12department at least 15 days before the date of cancellation.
AB874,7,1413 (b) All written requests for permits and inspection made by an electrical
14contractor shall be signed by a master electrician who satisfies par. (a) 2.
AB874,7,20 15(2) Except as provided under sub. (3), no person may perform electrical
16construction in this state unless the person is licensed by the department as a master,
17journeyman, or beginning electrician or is an apprentice electrician. The
18department, by rule, may specify the type of electrical construction that a master,
19journeyman, or beginning electrician or apprentice electrician is authorized to
20perform, except as follows: