Government

Government and Legislature

Wisconsin Department of Transportation

Wisconsin could make billions of dollars if the state started charging tolls for drivers to use its interstate highways. That’s according to a recent study.

Vijay Kumar Koulampet, CC BY-SA 3.0 / via Wikimedia Commons

Repeat drunken drivers will face tougher penalties in Wisconsin starting with the new year.

Gov. Scott Walker signed a law in April that makes a fourth drunken driving offense a felony regardless of when it's committed. Currently a fourth offense is a felony only if committed within five years of a third offense.

The law also increases the maximum sentence for fifth and sixth offenses from three years to five. Maximum sentences for seventh, eighth and ninth offenses will increase from five years to seven and a half.

Flickr user Beverly & Pack and Mass Communication Specialist 1st Class Chad J. McNeeley / "Taps, Bugle, Army, Military Funeral, Arlington National Cemetery" (CC v 2.0)

Illinois students in grades six through twelve will be able to get excused absences from school for playing Taps at military funerals starting next month. 

Republican Rep. Donald Moffitt says it can be hard for military families to find trumpet players to perform Taps.

“The pool of Taps players isn't real big,” Moffitt said. “If they feel that it would be more meaningful to have a live playing of taps, this definitely would increase the potential of [having] someone available.” 

Flickr user Eric E Castro / "The Tampon Fairy" (CC V 2.0)

Illinois consumers will no longer pay sales taxes on feminine hygiene products starting next year.

State Sen. Melinda Bush, D-Grayslake, sponsored the legislation.

“These are products that women need," she said, "and these things were being taxed at luxury tax rates and they shouldn't be taxed at all.”

Bush said she also is concerned that women are being charged more for some products and services than men.

Rockford Public Schools

The time to file petitions to run for office in the upcoming local elections came and went, but no one filed a petition for one Rockford school board seat.

There were no petitions filed in time for those to be listed in the primary elections for the Rockford School Board Subdistrict A seat. That’s according to the Winnebago County Clerk’s office.

However, those who want to file as write-in candidates for the seat for the April 4th election have until the beginning of February to do so. If no one files to run for office, then someone is appointed for the position.

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