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ab61Act 48
State of Wisconsin
Office of the Governor

August 18, 2003


TO THE HONORABLE MEMBERS OF THE ASSEMBLY:

I have approved Assembly Bill 61 as 2003 Wisconsin Act 48 and have deposited it in the Office of the Secretary of State. I have vetoed Section 2 and exercised the partial veto in SectionĀ 7.

Assembly Bill 61 addresses a significant public safety need by encouraging the development of enhanced 911 service for wireless phones. Enhanced 911 service allows 911 "public safety answering points," facilities to which 911 calls are initially routed, to pinpoint the location of a 911 call. While most 911 answering points in the state already provide enhanced service for calls originating from landlines, this public safety tool is not available for most wireless callers.

Assembly Bill 61 creates a three-year grant program administered by the Public Service Commission to reimburse local governments and wireless telephone service providers for certain costs related to enhanced wireless 911 service. The program will encourage the consolidation and efficient provision of 911 services by funding a single public safety answering point in each county. However, the bill limits the amount of grant funding that may be provided to link effectively local emergency call centers with the public safety answering point. Without equipment upgrades, calls relayed from the initial answering point to a local emergency call center will lack the locational information necessary to pinpoint the call.

OLE_LINK1Section 7 [as it relates to s. 146.70 (3m) (d) 4m.] allows the Public Service Commission to provide grants to local governments for costs associated with relaying messages regarding wireless 911 calls from public safety answering points to existing emergency call centers only if the commission determines: (a) the costs will equal no more than five percent of the overall costs of the statewide wireless 911 system; (b) reimbursement is in the public interest and promotes public health and safety; and (c) reimbursement is not a disincentive to consolidation of dispatch functions by local government emergency call centers.

I am partially vetoing Section 7 [as it relates to s. 146.70 (3m) (d) 4m.] to remove the requirements that the commission determine that costs will equal no more than five percent of overall costs and that reimbursement not be a disincentive to consolidation of dispatch functions because I object to the arbitrary five percent limitation on reimbursements for essential relay functions and because I object to the harm to public safety that could occur if existing emergency call centers are unable to make necessary equipment upgrades. As a result of this partial veto, the commission will still need to determine that reimbursement of these costs is in the public interest and promotes public health and safety.

Section 2 requires the Department of Electronic Government, now the Department of Administration, to administer a program to facilitate purchases, leases and service contracts by local governments that operate wireless public safety answering points. Section 7 [as it relates to s. 146.70 (3m) (d) 5.] limits reimbursements to a local government that purchases outside of the department's program to the actual costs under the program unless the local government has no practicable option under the program.

I am vetoing Section 2 and partially vetoing Section 7 [as it relates to s. 146.70 (3m) (d) 5.] to remove the purchasing program requirements because they are unnecessary and because requiring local governments to make purchases related to enhanced wireless 911 through the department's purchasing program could reduce local governments' abilities to negotiate favorable pricing on other telecommunications services.

Respectfully submitted,


JIM DOYLE
Governor
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