GOP balks at Evers’ special session on unemployment

Wisconsin state capitol

MADISON, Wis. (AP) — Wisconsin Republicans have rejected Democratic Gov. Tony Evers’ call for a special legislative session next week to pass his plan to modernize the state’s unemployment claims system.

Evers introduced a bill Wednesday morning that calls for the state Department of Workforce Development to conduct all transactions electronically and hands the department $5.3 million to renovate and modernize the claims system.

He issued an executive order calling for a special session on the bill to begin at noon on Tuesday.

The Democrat has sustained heavy criticism from Republicans over the DWD’s inability to process a massive backlog of unemployment claims sparked by coronavirus pandemic-related layoffs. Republican leaders rejected the session call, saying Evers can make changes on his own.