Democrats in the Wisconsin Senate have delayed action on a cable competition bill. With one observer calling it “ greased ,” the heavily lobbied legislation appeared to be on the fast track in the Senate and the Assembly. The bill would allow providers to enter into a statewide video franchise agreement, instead of the current practice of negotiating with local governments. But Senate Majority Leader, Beloit Democrat Judy Robson , said there were unanswered questions on what the fiscal impact would be on local communities. Robson cited a Senate rule under which any bill with a fiscal impact of more than $10,00 dollars is sent to the Joint Committee on Finance for further consideration.
Minority Leader, Senator Scott Fitzgerald , said his members were being kept in the dark, and questioned why the bill was being sent to the Joint Finance Committee. “I think that there's some kind of shenanigans or game going here,” said Fitzgerald, who argued that there were enough Senators in favor of the bill to pass it on Tuesday. Fitzgerald and Republican Senator Mike Ellis argued for a floor vote on the bill, with Ellis noting it had already been the subject of public hearings . But majority Democrats prevailed and sent the bill to committee on an 18-13 vote.