State legislation

15 Feb 1868

As we and everyone else knows the legislature won't adjourn on the 19th as it had planned to do, but will continue the session into mid March. With this prolongation of the session the Mr. Legislators avoid the blame that they act entirely out of self-interest. Their compensation will only be reduced by the prolongation of the session, but the state also doesn't win anything with it. Now one sees how ridiculous it is at the beginning of a session to want to determine how long it should be.

After four weeks of sessions the gentlemen will only be warming up and then get all worked up about the need for action; each one wants to pass a new law or at least change an old one, if not to improve it. The related motions fall on the presiding officials like snowflakes in winter. If the state wants to protect itself from the need to proliferate laws, then is should do away with the annual sessions, there's no other way.

From the legislative actions of the past week we can add that the motion of Mr. Moser's to end last year's law that excludes the innkeepers from the right to be a justice of the peace was rejected in the Senate while the house had passed it with a fine majority.

A repeal of the 8-hour workday from last year, which was largely recommended by Mr. Horn, who is privileged as a legislator, although he voted for it last year and as Mr. Robbins loudly accused him that he largely voted for it to show that he was no artisocrat, besides the latter's blithely explaining it to death. The law will therefore remain a dead letter.

The two houses finally agreed on the Governor's envoy. According to him there should be printed 1000 copies in English, 3000 in German, 2000 in Norwegian, 2000 in Welsh and 1000 in French languages for which the state pays 3 cents for the English, 2 cents for the German, 6 cents for the Norwegian, 14 cents for the Welsh and 8 cents for the French copies. For what purpose the copies are being printed we don't understand, the Welsh who live in the state understand English better than their mother tongue.

The legislators, through a unanimous resolution, extended an invitation to Madison for the legislators and state officials from Minnesota. The purpose is justify a bash celebrating the joining of the two states by the Prairie du Chien and St. Paul Railroad or actually to cultivate a friendly mutual mood with regard to legislation.

One Representative provoked Madisonite Representative Silas, who uses every chance to give a speech, by proposing to move the capital to Milwaukee, if Milwaukee provides the buildings, and to convert the current capital into an insane asylum. It happened as it was intended to happen. Mr. Silas gave a very excited speech against the move by which the gentlemen amused themselves greatly for such a move never was taken seriously.

The biggest battle in legislation arises over Beef Slough in Buffalo County. As is generally known a company in that slough wants to establish a big boom (a container for sawn timber) and build a sawmill. This company has already made considerable preparations and Mr. Moser has submitted a proposal for approval of the establishment. All of the sawmill owners in Eau Claire and Menomonie are opposed because the logs in Frčhight at high water cannot be kept back anymore but must all be brought together to the boom of this company, which will harm the upper mill owners. There will therefore be strong opposition to the approval.

Corrigendum. Two issues ago we reported that in the political debate between Mr. Moser and Mr. Bilus the speaker decided that expressions Mr. Moser used contradicted parliamentary customs. That was incorrect. The speaker decided that Mr. Moser broke no rule and could leave.

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