Wisconsin Supreme Court deadlocked on Milwaukee sick leave case

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October 14, 2010

By Kyle Maichle

MADISON, Wisconsin: The Wisconsin Supreme Court issued its decision involving the 2008 Milwaukee paid sick leave initiative on October 14, 2010. The ruling from Wisconsin's highest court found the justices deadlocked and adding another chapter to a very lengthy legal battle.[1]

The justices voted 3 to 3, with one abstaining, on the decision to affirm or rule unconstitutional the Milwaukee County Circuit Court's decision to invalidate the ordinance.[1] This temporairly grants a victory to the Milwaukee Metropolitan Association of Commerce who sued the National 9 to 5 Assocation of Working Women to halt enforcement of the ordinance.[1]

Tim Sheenan, President of MMAC said, "While we would have preferred a decision from the Supreme Court, we remain confident in our position that this mandate is in violation of both federal and Wisconsin statutes and the Wisconsin Constitution." The MMAC President also stated, "We look forward to making that case persuasively to the Court of Appeals, keeping the injunction in place."[2]

Amy Stear, the State Director of Wisconsin 9 to 5, did not offer any praise or criticism towards the Supreme Court's decision in a statement issued by the organization. Stear did state that "we’re confident in our legal case and look forward to the long overdue implementation of the ordinance.[3]

Associate Justices Michael Gableman, Pat Roggensack, and David Prosser voted in favor to uphold the ruling.[4] Chief Justice Shirley Abrahamson along with Associate Justices Patrick Crooks and Ann Walsh Bradley dissented.[4] Associate Justice Annette Ziegler abstained from voting.[1]

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