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As I See It

Allowing squatter on state board sets bad precedent

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It is apparently perfectly legal, but that doesn’t mean it is right. The Wisconsin Supreme Court has ruled that a member of the Wisconsin DNR policy board can remain on that board even though his term expired more than a year ago. Fred Prehn was appointed to the board by Governor Scott Walker. His term was to expire in May of 2021, but he refused to step down and serves on the board to this day, cementing the board’s conservative majority. Governor Tony Evers appointed someone to replace Prehn, but because his successor has not been confirmed by the Wisconsin Senate, the high court ruled that Prehn can legally remain a member of the board. Why hasn’t Sandra Nass been confirmed by the Senate to replace Prehn? Because the Wisconsin Senate has refused to hold a confirmation hearing. And the court ruled that because there technically is not a vacancy on the board which sets environmental policies for the state, there is no vacancy to fill. That seems a dangerous precedent. There are many other Evers’ appointees to other state boards who also have not been confirmed. What is to keep them from also refusing to step down? Apparently nothing. This is, in the words of Governor Evers, politics at its most dangerous, further eroding our democracy. The ruling does little to build confidence that Wisconsin voters have a voice in our state government.

Scott Robert Shaw serves as WIZM Program Director and News Director, and delivers the morning news on WKTY, Z-93 and 95.7 The Rock. Scott has been at Mid-West Family La Crosse since 1989, and authors Wisconsin's only daily radio editorial, "As I See It" heard on WIZM each weekday morning and afternoon.

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2 Comments

2 Comments

  1. Ken Pickett

    June 30, 2022 at 9:55 am

    The court’s decision to allow the Entitled Prehn to stay on the board after his term expired, is another example of the GOPS reckless disregard for the rule of law and established policy. His sheer arrogance is indicative of the Republican Party, disdain for the will of the American people

  2. Nick

    July 1, 2022 at 7:03 am

    I totally agree. The Republican Party in this state should be viewed as an embarraasment

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