HALL MONITOR: “YES” on government accountability in Wisconsin (AB 145 and SB 117)

Name: Assembly Bill 145 and Senate Bill 117


Status: The assembly held a public hearing for Assembly Bill 145 in November 2023. Currently in the Assembly Committee on Government Accountability and Oversight. The Senate Committee on Government Operations, Elections and Consumer Protection recommended Senate Bill 117 for passage in April 2023.


Sponsors for Assembly Bill 145 are Representatives Todd Novak, Rob Swearingen, Scott Allen, David Armstrong, Samba Baldeh, Elijah Behnke, Ty Bodden, Robert Brooks, James Edming, Rick Gundrum, Nate Gustafson, Joel Kitchens, John Macco, David Murphey, Jeffrey Mursau, Amanda Nedweski, William Penterman, Nik Rettinger, Jessie Rodriguez, Shae Sortwell, Paul Tittl, Travis Tranel, Ron Tusler, Robert Wittke, David Steffen, and Clinton Anderson. These assembly members also cosponsor Senate Bill 117.

Sponsors for Senate Bill 117 are Senators Dan Knodl, Duey Stroebel, Joan Ballweg, Rachel Cabral-Guevara, Robert Cowles, Mary Felzkowski, Steve Nass, Romaine Quinn, Kelda Roys, Van Wanggaard, and Mark Spreitzer. These senators also cosponsor Assembly Bill 145.


Assembly Bill 145 and Senate Bill 117 would reinstate the ability for courts to award
attorneys’ fees if records are released after a lawsuit is filed but before a decision is issued.
The bill would turn back a 2022 Wisconsin Supreme Court decision that restricted when the
public can recover fees when suing for public records.

Why does PDE Action support this bill?

PDE Action is, first and foremost, an organization advocating for education transparency so parents know what their children are learning in taxpayer-funded schools. This bill would enhance transparency between the government and parents.