Wisconsin Senate Kills Ethanol Bill

Cindy Zimmerman

The Wisconsin Senate indefinitely postponed action on legislation that would have required that all gasoline sold in the state contain ten percent ethanol, effectively killing it this legislative year.

A press release from the Wisconsin Ethanol Coalition said that they will continue “efforts to promote the ethanol industry and its benefits to Wisconsin.”
Majority Leader Dale Schultz issued a statement expressing his disappointment over the outcome. “While the bill is dead for this session, I’m committed to working with supporters of ethanol, agriculture, the environment, and job creation to ensure we can bring the issue back next year.” Senator Shultz is a Republican from one of the state’s major corn growing areas.

The Capital Times says it was a rare example of bipartisanship in the State Capitol, with 12 Republicans and five Democrats voting to indefinitely postpone the bill, which had already been passed by the Assembly and would have been signed by the governor. The Times also noted Sen. Luther Olsen, R-Ripon, recused himself from voting because of business ties to the ethanol industry.
Meanwhile, that “ties to ethanol” issue surfaced this week for some lawmakers in Missouri where they are also considering a ten percent ethanol mandate, according to an AP article .