Over the course of the last few months, your fellow members who serve on the WBA Government Relations Committee (GRC) met in Madison to develop our legislative agenda for the 2019-2020 Legislative Session. We thank everyone who contributed ideas for the committee to consider. The list was approved by the WBA Board in December.

Every two years, the committee analyzes a whole host of issues and policy changes that arose over the previous legislative session that may need to be changed or improved in the future. Taking in opinions from members both on and off the committee, the GRC takes a vote to recommend the whole agenda and then ranks the issues based on priority: "high," "medium," or "low."

Some of the new ideas recommended include: 

  • Trust Code Update 
  • Shortening the period of cashier check indemnification
  • Allow non-filing for escheatment when there are no dormant accounts to report
  • Ways to encourage FinTech and improve data and cyber security

Our top priority continues to be tax parity. The GRC and WBA Board affirmed our intent to pursue that goal via a tax exemption on commercial and agricultural loans under $10 million. This is the first session where we will be pitching it to be included in the governor's budget. We have had good initial talks with Governor Tony Evers' team. 

Obviously, any potential changes to law at the state and federal level that could be made are determined by the makeup of the state legislature and Congress. The 2018 election ushered in an era of divided government at both the state and federal level. WBA will continue to work with both parties to get as much of our agenda passed as possible.

Further changes to Dodd-Frank in Washington will likely be non-existent for at least the next two years. Democrats controlling the House of Representatives makes any meaningful reform almost impossible. Add in the fact that the race for the Democratic nomination for president in 2020 will begin this year, and the realistic timetable for legislation to pass is by the end of this summer. 

For the first time since 2008, your 2020 ballot will have no Wisconsin-held statewide races for you to vote in. This gives you the opportunity to help our allies on both sides of the aisle in the state legislature and Congress who need your support at the ballot box and with your political advocacy contributions to win or retain their offices and support WBA-backed legislation. Please continue to donate to the PAC and conduit and release your conduit funds as soon as requested.

If you have any questions on the WBA legislative agenda or how you can support candidates through our political advocacy funds, please contact WBA Director – Government Relations Jon Turke at 608-441-1215 or via email.