LRB-4368/1
MES&MED:emw&amn
2017 - 2018 LEGISLATURE
October 27, 2017 - Introduced by Representatives Brandtjen, Gannon,
Horlacher, Hutton, Jacque, Knodl, Murphy, Novak, Ott, Sanfelippo,
Skowronski, Thiesfeldt and Wichgers, cosponsored by Senators Wanggaard
and Vukmir. Referred to Committee on Local Government.
AB606,1,12 1An Act to repeal 62.50 (12) and 62.50 (26); to renumber 62.50 (1e) (a) to (d); to
2renumber and amend
62.50 (1h); to amend 62.13 (1), 62.13 (5) (em) (intro.),
362.13 (5) (em) 1., 62.13 (5) (em) 5., 62.50 (1e) (intro.), 62.50 (6), 62.50 (7) (a),
462.50 (11), 62.50 (13), 62.50 (17) (a), 62.50 (17) (b) (intro.), 62.50 (17) (b) 1., 62.50
5(17) (b) 5., 62.50 (18), 62.50 (19), 62.50 (20), 62.50 (21), 62.50 (22), 62.51 (1) (a)
6and 66.0502 (4) (b); and to create 62.50 (1e) (ae), 62.50 (1e) (bm) (intro.), 62.50
7(1h) (b), 62.50 (3) (d) and (e), 62.50 (5m), 62.50 (21m), 63.25 (1) (e) and 66.0502
8(4) (e) of the statutes; relating to: changes affecting a first class city board of
9fire and police commissioners, chiefs, officers, and fire fighters, police and fire
10departments and boards of police and fire commissioners in other cities,
11villages, and certain towns, veterans preference points awarded by first class
12cities, and granting rule-making authority.
Analysis by the Legislative Reference Bureau
This bill makes a number of changes that affect first class city (presently only
Milwaukee) police and fire departments, and the board of fire and police

commissioners. The bill makes some similar changes that affect other cities,
villages, and towns, a change related to the standard of proof in disciplinary
procedures that affects both a first class city and other cities, villages, and certain
towns, and a change that applies to the makeup of boards of police and fire
commissioners. Currently, not more than three members of a first class city
seven-person board, or four members of a first class city nine-person board, may be
members of the same political party. Under the bill, members who are affiliated with
a political party must be selected by the mayor from lists submitted by the chief
officer of each of the two major political parties. Under the bill, the board of a first
class city must have at least one member with professional law enforcement
experience and at least one member with professional fire fighting experience. With
regard to other cities, villages, and certain towns, the bill requires their boards to
have at least one member who has either professional law enforcement experience
or professional fire fighting experience. The law enforcement and fire fighter
members are selected by a first class city mayor from a list of names submitted by
the respective associations of members of the police department and fire department.
Political party affiliation requirements do not apply to the law enforcement and fire
fighter members of the board, but such members are generally restricted from
making financial contributions to political candidates within three years of their
appointment.
The bill also specifies that when a three-member panel of a first class city board
conducts a trial to evaluate a complaint filed against a member of either department,
at least one member of the panel must have professional law enforcement experience
if the accused is a police officer, and one such member must have professional fire
fighting experience if the accused is a fire fighter.
The bill authorizes such a board to adopt rules to allow the use of a hearing
examiner, who must be agreed to by the parties, to assist the board with disciplinary
hearings and appeals. In addition, the bill removes the executive secretary of the
board from the mayor's cabinet.
The bill creates the office of independent monitor. This person acts as the
principal staff of a first class city board, reviews certain situations or investigations
involving the police or fire department, evaluates police and fire department policies
and practices, and issues periodic reports to the public relating to the status and
outcome of complaints that have been filed. The independent monitor is appointed
by the mayor and confirmed by the common council and serves a four-year term,
although he or she serves at the pleasure of the board and may not be removed by
the mayor or common council.
When a first class city board appoints a chief of either department, the bill
requires the board to meet in closed session with representatives of the employee
association whose members will serve under the proposed chief. Currently, if a first
class city board discharges, suspends, or reduces in rank an officer or member of
either department, the individual so disciplined may appeal that decision to a circuit
court. Under the bill, an individual who is so disciplined may choose to appeal the
board's decision either to a circuit court or to an arbitrator who is selected jointly by
the parties. An individual who is disciplined and appeals to an arbitrator may appeal

the arbitrator's decision to a circuit court. Currently, when the board issues a
decision in a disciplinary hearing, it uses a just cause standard which consists of
several elements. One of the elements requires the board to determine whether the
chief of the police or fire department discovered substantial evidence that the
subordinate violated the rule or order as described in the charges against the
subordinate. The bill changes the standard from substantial evidence to clear and
convincing evidence. This change, from substantial evidence to clear and convincing
evidence, also applies to other cities, villages, and certain towns.
The bill also creates a scope of review under which a court or arbitrator is to
review an appeal of a first class city board's discipline of an officer or member of either
department. Under the bill, a court or arbitrator must review the evidence
independently and without deference to the board's findings; must reverse the
board's decision if it finds that fairness or correctness of the action has been impaired
by material or procedural errors; and must set aside or modify the board's decision
if it finds that the board erroneously interpreted a provision of law, or may remand
the case to the board for further action that is consistent with current law.
The bill also requires the court or arbitrator to reverse the board's decision if
it finds that the board's exercise of discretion is outside of its delegated powers; is
inconsistent with a board rule, policy, or practice, unless the board's deviation is
adequately explained; or violates the constitution or the statutes. The bill also
authorizes a court or arbitrator to take additional testimony, depositions, and
interrogatories, and to grant requests for additional discovery.
The bill also requires that a first class city's city service commission, and a first
class city fire and police commission, have a rule that requires the city to give the
same number of veterans preference points, with regard to competitive
examinations, to applicants who apply for a job, as they gave before March 1, 2017.
A first class city fire and police commission is also required to adopt a similar rule.
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:
AB606,1 1Section 1. 62.13 (1) of the statutes is amended to read:
AB606,4,42 62.13 (1) Commissioners. Except as provided in subs. (2g), (2m), (2s), and (8)
3(b) each city shall have a board of police and fire commissioners consisting of 5
4citizens, 3 of whom shall constitute a quorum. At least one member of the board shall
5have either professional law enforcement experience or professional fire fighting
6experience.
The mayor shall annually, between the last Monday of April and the first

1Monday of May, appoint in writing to be filed with the secretary of the board, one
2member for a term of 5 years. No appointment shall be made which will result in
3more than 3 members of the board belonging to the same political party. The board
4shall keep a record of its proceedings.
AB606,2 5Section 2. 62.13 (5) (em) (intro.) of the statutes is amended to read:
AB606,4,126 62.13 (5) (em) (intro.) No subordinate may be suspended, reduced in rank,
7suspended and reduced in rank, or removed by the board under par. (e), based on
8charges filed by the board, members of the board, an aggrieved person or the chief
9under par. (b), unless the board determines whether by a preponderance of the
10evidence
there is just cause, as described in this paragraph, to sustain the charges.
11In making its determination, the board shall apply the following standards, to the
12extent applicable:
AB606,3 13Section 3. 62.13 (5) (em) 1. of the statutes is amended to read:
AB606,4,1614 62.13 (5) (em) 1. Whether the subordinate could reasonably be expected to have
15had knowledge of the probable consequences, including the extent of possible
16disciplinary action,
of the alleged conduct.
AB606,4 17Section 4. 62.13 (5) (em) 5. of the statutes is amended to read:
AB606,4,2018 62.13 (5) (em) 5. Whether the chief discovered substantial clear and convincing
19evidence that the subordinate violated the rule or order as described in the charges
20filed against the subordinate.
AB606,5 21Section 5. 62.50 (1e) (intro.) of the statutes is amended to read:
AB606,4,2322 62.50 (1e) Definition Definitions. (intro.) In this section, “offense" means any
23felony or Class A or Class B misdemeanor violation of any of the following
:
AB606,6 24Section 6. 62.50 (1e) (a) to (d) of the statutes are renumbered 62.50 (1e) (bm)
251. to 4.
AB606,7
1Section 7. 62.50 (1e) (ae) of the statutes is created to read:
AB606,5,32 62.50 (1e) (ae) “Discipline” means any of the following disciplinary actions that
3may affect a member of the police force or fire department:
AB606,5,44 1. Suspension of 5 or more days.
AB606,5,55 2. Reduction in rank.
AB606,5,66 3. Demotion.
AB606,5,77 4. Discharge.
AB606,8 8Section 8. 62.50 (1e) (bm) (intro.) of the statutes is created to read:
AB606,5,109 62.50 (1e) (bm) (intro.) “Offense” means any felony or Class A or Class B
10misdemeanor violation of any of the following:
AB606,9 11Section 9. 62.50 (1h) of the statutes is renumbered 62.50 (1h) (a) and amended
12to read:
AB606,6,213 62.50 (1h) (a) In all 1st class cities, however incorporated, there shall be a board
14of fire and police commissioners, consisting of either 7 or 9 citizens, not more than
153, if the board has 7 members, or 4, if the board has 9 members, of whom shall at any
16time belong to the same political party. In selecting members of the board who are
17affiliated with a political party, the mayor shall select candidates from lists of eligible
18individuals that are prepared by the chief officer of each of the 2 major political
19parties that received the largest number of votes for president in the most recently
20held presidential election. Each list must contain at least 5 names, but may not
21contain more than 20 names. Each chief officer shall update his or her list every 6
22months. Political party affiliation requirements do not apply to members who have
23professional law enforcement or fire fighting experience, but such members may not
24have made a financial contribution to any candidate for local political office, any

1partisan candidate for state political office, or any candidate for federal political
2office, within 3 years of his or her appointment.
AB606,6,6 3(c) The staff and members of the board shall receive the salary or other
4compensation for their services fixed by the common council. The salary shall be
5fixed at the same time and in the same manner as the salary of other city officials
6and employees.
AB606,6,15 7(d) Except as otherwise provided in this subsection, a majority of the
8members-elect, as that term is used in s. 59.001 (2m), of the board shall constitute
9a quorum necessary for the transaction of business. A 3-member panel of the board
10may conduct, and decide by majority vote, a trial described under sub. (12) or may
11hear and decide, by majority vote, charges filed by an aggrieved person under sub.
12(19)
. For a trial of a member of the police force, at least one member of the panel shall
13have professional law enforcement experience, and for a trial of a member of the fire
14department, at least one member of the panel shall have professional fire fighting
15experience.
AB606,7,4 16(e) It shall be the duty of the mayor of the city, on or before the 2nd Monday in
17July, to appoint 7, or 9, members of the board, designating the term of office of each,
18one to hold one year, 2 to hold 2 years, 2 to hold 3 years, one to hold 4 years if the board
19has 7 members, and 2 to hold 4 years if the board has 9 members, and one to hold 5
20years if the board has 7 members, and 2 to hold 5 years if the board has 9 members,
21and until their respective successors shall be appointed and qualified. Thereafter
22the terms of office shall be 5 years from the 2nd Monday in July, and until a successor
23is appointed and qualified. The mayor may reduce the size of the board from 9 to 7
24members by failing to appoint 2 successors for individuals whose terms expire at the
25same time. Every person appointed a member of the board shall be subject to

1confirmation by the common council and every appointed member shall, before
2entering upon the duties of the office take and subscribe the oath of office prescribed
3by article IV, section 28, of the constitution, and file the same duly certified by the
4officer administering it, with the clerk of the city.
AB606,7,16 5(f) Not later than the first day of the 7th month beginning after a member
6appointed by the mayor is confirmed by the common council, the member shall enroll
7in a training class that is related to the mission of the board and, not later than the
8first day of the 13th month beginning after a member appointed by the mayor is
9confirmed by the common council, the member shall complete the class. The training
10class shall be conducted by the city. Appointments made prior to the time this
11subchapter first applies to a 1st class city shall not be subject to confirmation by the
12common council.
No member may participate in a disciplinary appeal or trial until
13he or she completes the training class and any other training required by the city,
14except that a law enforcement officer or fire fighter who serves on the board is not
15subject to these training requirements if the individual is current on his or her law
16enforcement standards board training.
AB606,10 17Section 10. 62.50 (1h) (b) of the statutes is created to read:
AB606,8,418 62.50 (1h) (b) At least one member of the board shall have professional law
19enforcement experience and at least one member of the board shall have professional
20fire fighting experience. With regard to the board members who must have
21professional law enforcement and professional firefighting experience, the mayor
22shall appoint those members from a list of 3 names submitted by the employee
23association that represents nonsupervisory law enforcement officers in the case of
24the law enforcement appointee, and the employee association that represents fire
25fighters in the case of the fire fighter appointee. The initial term of the professional

1law enforcement appointee shall be 2 years and the initial term of the professional
2fire fighter appointee shall be 5 years, notwithstanding the other requirements
3regarding length of terms in this subsection. All employees of the board shall be
4nonpartisan.
AB606,11 5Section 11. 62.50 (3) (d) and (e) of the statutes are created to read:
AB606,8,96 62.50 (3) (d) 1. The board may adopt rules to allow the use of a hearing
7examiner to assist the board with disciplinary hearings and appeals. At least 30 days
8before a proceeding for which the board would like to use a hearing examiner, the
9board and the individual being disciplined must agree on the hearing examiner.
AB606,8,1810 2. If the parties are unable to agree on a hearing examiner, the parties shall
11select a hearing examiner from the list of reserve judges maintained by the director
12of state courts. If the parties are unable to agree on reserve judge, the parties shall
13alternate striking names from the list until either the parties agree on a reserve
14judge who remains on the list or only one reserve judge remains on the list, except
15that a hearing examiner chosen under this method may not serve if he or she served
16in an appointed position for the city or county in which the city is predominantly
17located within 10 years from the date of the proceeding over which the reserve judge
18is being selected to preside.
AB606,8,2319 (e) The board shall adopt a rule that gives the same number of veterans
20preference points, with regard to examinations described in sub. (5), to applicants
21who apply for a position with the city on and after the first day of the 2nd month
22beginning after the effective date of this paragraph .... [LRB inserts date], as they
23gave before March 1, 2017.
AB606,12 24Section 12. 62.50 (5m) of the statutes is created to read:
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