Conservatively Speaking

State Senator Mary Lazich (R-New Berlin) represents parts of four counties: Milwaukee, Waukesha, Racine, and Walworth. Her Senate District 28 includes New Berlin, Franklin, Greendale, Hales Corners, Muskego, Waterford, Big Bend, the town of Vernon and parts of Greenfield, East Troy, and Mukwonago. Senator Lazich has been in the Legislature for more than a decade. She considers herself a tireless crusader for lower taxes, reduced spending and smaller government.

"The dumbest bill of the session"


My colleague, state Representative Steve Nass (R-Whitewater) calls it the “dumbest bill of the session.” Representative Nass just might be right.

He is referring to Assembly Bill 578 (AB 578) that would mandate cleaning methods in public buildings.

An examination of the details of the bill demonstrates legislative Democrats' continued aggression for greater government control.

AB 578 requires the creation of the Council on Healthy and Environmentally Sensitive Cleaning  I kid you not.  

The Department of Health Services (DHS) would adopt, according to an analysis by the Legislative Reference Bureau, “rules requiring cleaning that minimizes adverse effects on human health and the environment (healthy and environmentally sensitive cleaning) in school buildings, buildings on University of Wisconsin campuses, other buildings owned by this state, buildings owned by a technical college district board, and buildings owned by a city, village, town, or county.

DHS must consult with the Council on Healthy and Environmentally Sensitive Cleaning about promulgating the rules.

Who would make up the Council on Healthy and Environmentally Sensitive Cleaning?

1. The superintendent of public instruction or the superintendent’s designee.

2. The secretary of natural resources or the secretary’s designee.

3. A representative of a producer of cleaning products in this state.

4. A representative of a labor union that represents workers who use cleaning products  

5. A representative of the organization Wisconsin Association of School Nurses or a similar organization.

6. Two parents of school students.

7. One school student.

8. One school principal.

9. One school teacher.

10. One school district administrator.

11. One health professional with expertise in public health.

The Secretary of DHS would appoint above members 3-11 for three-year terms.

Under AB 578, Healthy and environmentally sensitive cleaning is defined as cleaning that minimizes adverse impacts on human health and the environment. That is pretty open-ended.

Certain products approved by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) would be required to be used under AB 578 including restroom cleaners, general purpose cleaners, hand soap, toilet paper and paper towels, vacuum cleaners, and carpet extractors.

An Internet site would be established to show the political subdivisions, school districts and institutions that abide by the healthy and environmentally sensitive cleaning rules.

An exemption would be made for a political subdivision, school district, or institution that could substantiate the new rules would increase costs. The exemption would be for one year only.

AB 578 sounds like bureaucracy run amok.

Democrats control the Governor’s office, the state Senate, and the state Assembly and thus, set the agenda.  Where are the proposals of critical importance to reduce taxing and spending, fix our state budget responsibly, improve Wisconsin’s business climate, and create more jobs to reduce our unemployment rate?

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