Senate to vote on bills lowering minimum lifeguard age, water ski spotters, lead pipes

Senate to vote on bills lowering minimum lifeguard age, water ski spotters, lead pipes

The state Senate is set to pass a bill that would allow 15-year-olds to work as lifeguards.

Current Wisconsin regulations governing hazardous employment for minors prohibit 14- and 15-year-olds from working as lifeguards. The bill would require the state Department of Workforce Development to allow 15-year-olds to become lifeguards.

The measure’s Republican authors, Sen. Luther Olsen and Rep. Dale Kooyenga, say the bill would increase the number of potential lifeguards for aquatic facilities.

The American Red Cross as well as the Association of Wisconsin Tourism Attractions and the Wisconsin Alliances of YMCAs all have registered in support. No groups have registered in opposition.

The Assembly passed the bill in November. The Senate is scheduled to take it up Tuesday. Passage would send the proposal to Gov. Scott Walker.

Senate to vote on bill eliminating water ski spotters

The Wisconsin Senate is set to vote again on a bill that would end the requirement for water ski spotters.

The Republican bill would allow a pilot to operate a boat pulling someone on water skis without a spotter on board as long as the boat has a wide-angle rearview mirror.

The cleared the Senate last spring but the Assembly modified the measure in November to allow local municipalities to require spotters on inland lakes with water safety patrol units that perform at least 1,500 hours of enforcement or search and rescue activities every two years.

The Senate is expected to approve that change during a floor session Tuesday and send the bill to Gov. Scott Walker.

Wisconsin Senate to take up lead pipe bill again

The state Senate is set to put the finishing touches on a bill designed to help Wisconsin homeowners cover the cost of replacing lead pipes.

The would allow public water utilities and local governments to provide grants, loans or both to property owners to help them replace portions of lead water pipes running from the house to the street.

The Senate passed a version of the bill in October that allowed for up to two-thirds of the cost to be covered. The Assembly passed the proposal in November but reduced the amount that could be covered to a half.

The Senate is expected to approve the Assembly’s change during a Tuesday floor session and send the proposal to Gov. Scott Walker.

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