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Fall session of state Legislature off to slow start

MADISON, WI (WTAQ) - The Wisconsin Legislature is off to a slow start with its fall session. 

The full Assembly does not plan to meet at all this month. Its Republican leadership is re-grouping, after Majority Leader Scott Suder took a job with the state Public Service Commission.

The Senate, meanwhile, only has one session scheduled for the month -- that being a week from Tuesday. 

They're expected to act on a couple of lingering measures -- plus reducing public access to recreational land at Gogebic Taconite's iron ore mine. Also, leaders of both houses are working behind the scenes to find common ground on tougher drunk driving penalties, and making private voucher schools follow the same standards as public schools. 

An Assembly committee is scheduled to vote Thursday on tougher drunk driving penalties which opponents say would cost millions more for prison facilities. Speaker Robin Vos has told members to focus on something that can pass.

Vos also says there's no chance that lawmakers will pass Republican Andre Jacque's second effort to pass a "personhood amendment" -- giving unborn children the same rights as those who've been born. Not even the state's largest pro-life group favors it -- and Vos says it's not going anywhere. 

A Senate hearing is planned Wednesday on legalizing raw milk. That might not go anywhere, either, as Republican Governor Scott Walker says he wants to focus on job creation and worker training.  

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