Chicago Tribune: A Wisconsin judge has temporarily blocked the state’s new and contentious collective bargaining law from taking effect. The ruling was handed down this morning by Judge Maryann Sumi in a lawsuit filed by Dane County District Attorney Ismael Ozanne.
Ozanne contended a legislative committee that broke a stalemate that had kept the law in limbo for weeks met without the proper 24-hour notice required by Wisconsin’s open meetings law. A separate lawsuit that Sumi will also consider alleges full Senate’s vote on the law was improper.
The Republican-controlled Legislature passed the measure last week and Gov. Scott Walker signed it into law on Friday. Both Walker and Republican leaders insist it was enacted properly.
The law can’t take effect until it’s formally published by Secretary of State Doug La Follette, a Democrat. He has 10 days after the governor signs a law to publish it, and he has said he plans to use all the time allotted to him before doing so on March 25.
Ozanne, also a Democrat, wants Sumi to grant an emergency order blocking La Follette from publishing the law while a judge weighs the merits of his case.
Democratic Dane County Executive Kathleen Falk filed a similar lawsuit last Friday. Falk also sought an emergency order blocking publication, but Judge Amy Smith denied it and said Falk’s attorneys had failed to prove the law’s implementation would cause irreparable harm as the lawsuit works its way through the courts. Falk later asked the law be blocked on a non-emergency basis.