Terms Used In Wisconsin Statutes 59.53
- Acquire: when used in connection with a grant of power to any person, includes the acquisition by purchase, grant, gift or bequest. See Wisconsin Statutes 990.01
- Appropriation: The provision of funds, through an annual appropriations act or a permanent law, for federal agencies to make payments out of the Treasury for specified purposes. The formal federal spending process consists of two sequential steps: authorization
- Contract: A legal written agreement that becomes binding when signed.
- Corporation: A legal entity owned by the holders of shares of stock that have been issued, and that can own, receive, and transfer property, and carry on business in its own name.
- County board: means the county board of supervisors. See Wisconsin Statutes 990.01
- Guardian: A person legally empowered and charged with the duty of taking care of and managing the property of another person who because of age, intellect, or health, is incapable of managing his (her) own affairs.
- Jurisdiction: (1) The legal authority of a court to hear and decide a case. Concurrent jurisdiction exists when two courts have simultaneous responsibility for the same case. (2) The geographic area over which the court has authority to decide cases.
- Land: includes lands, tenements and hereditaments and all rights thereto and interests therein. See Wisconsin Statutes 990.01
- Municipality: includes cities and villages; it may be construed to include towns. See Wisconsin Statutes 990.01
- Officers: when applied to corporations include directors and trustees. See Wisconsin Statutes 990.01
- Person: includes all partnerships, associations and bodies politic or corporate. See Wisconsin Statutes 990.01
- Population: means that shown by the most recent regular or special federal census. See Wisconsin Statutes 990.01
- Prosecute: To charge someone with a crime. A prosecutor tries a criminal case on behalf of the government.
- Qualified: when applied to any person elected or appointed to office, means that such person has done those things which the person was by law required to do before entering upon the duties of the person's office. See Wisconsin Statutes 990.01
- Settlement: Parties to a lawsuit resolve their difference without having a trial. Settlements often involve the payment of compensation by one party in satisfaction of the other party's claims.
- State: when applied to states of the United States, includes the District of Columbia, the commonwealth of Puerto Rico and the several territories organized by Congress. See Wisconsin Statutes 990.01
- Sworn: includes "affirmed" in all cases where by law an affirmation may be substituted for an oath. See Wisconsin Statutes 990.01
- Town: may be construed to include cities, villages, wards or districts. See Wisconsin Statutes 990.01
- Trial: A hearing that takes place when the defendant pleads "not guilty" and witnesses are required to come to court to give evidence.
- Year: means a calendar year, unless otherwise expressed; "year" alone means "year of our Lord". See Wisconsin Statutes 990.01
(1) Surplus commodity plans. The board may adopt and participate in any surplus commodity absorption plan in connection with furnishing relief to needy persons within any municipality in the county and appropriate money to carry out such plan.
(2) Emergency energy relief. Regardless of whether a county operates a relief program under sub. (21), the board may appropriate money for making payments to individuals or providing grants to community action agencies and municipalities to assist persons and families in the purchase of emergency energy supplies.
(3) Community action and nonprofit agencies. The board may appropriate funds for promoting and assisting any community action agency under s. 49.265, and for making payments to a nonprofit organization, as defined in s. 23.197 (4) (a) 1., that has as a primary purpose providing assistance to individuals who are the victims of domestic violence and related crimes. The county may also appropriate money for making payments to such a nonprofit organization for its capital and operational expenses.
(4) Comprehensive health planning. A county or combination of counties may engage in comprehensive health planning, and boards may appropriate county funds to an areawide agency for such planning, whether the organization to be utilized is a public agency or a private, nonprofit corporation.
(5) Child and spousal support; paternity program; medical support liability program.
59.53(5)(a) (a) The board shall contract with the department of children and families to implement and administer the child and spousal support and establishment of paternity and the medical support liability programs provided for by Title IV of the federal social security act, except that in a county with a population of 750,000 or more the county executive shall exercise all of this authority. The board may designate by board resolution any office, officer, board, department or agency, except the clerk of circuit court, as the county child support agency and, in a county with a population of 750,000 or more, the county executive shall administer the designated county child support agency. The board, county child support agency, or county executive of a county with a population of 750,000 or more shall implement and administer the programs in accordance with the contract with the department of children and families. The attorneys responsible for support enforcement under sub. (6) (a), circuit court commissioners and all other county officials shall cooperate with the county and the department of children and families as necessary to provide the services required under the programs. The county shall charge the fee established by the department of children and families under s. 49.22 for services provided under this paragraph to persons not receiving benefits under s. 49.148 or 49.155 or assistance under s. 48.645, 49.19, 49.46, 49.465, 49.47, 49.471, or 49.472.
(b) The county child support agency under par. (a) shall electronically enter into the statewide data system related to child and spousal support payments that is operated by the department of children and families the terms of any order made or judgment granted in the circuit court of the county requiring payments under s. 948.22 (7) or ch. 767 or 769 that are directed under s. 767.57 (1) to be paid to the department of children and families or its designee. The county child support agency shall enter the terms of any such order or judgment within the time required by federal law and shall enter revisions ordered by the court to any order or judgment the terms of which are maintained on the data system.
(6) Attorneys; support enforcement responsibility.
1. Except as provided in subd. 2. and in a county with a population of 750,000 or more, each board shall employ or contract with attorneys to provide support enforcement. In a county with a population of 750,000 or more, the county executive shall hire or contract with attorneys to provide support enforcement under this subdivision. Section 59.42 (1), (2) (a) and (3) does not preclude a board from assigning these support enforcement duties to any attorney employed by the county.
2. If on June 1, 1989, a county has 1.0 or more full-time equivalent attorney positions that have primary responsibility for handling cases described in par. (b), as determined by the district attorney of the prosecutorial unit, the county shall establish and maintain a support enforcement office consisting of support enforcement attorneys and office personnel. In counties having a population of less than 750,000, a county budget under s. 65.90 shall list the proposed appropriation under s. 65.90 (2) for the support enforcement office separate from any other office, department or activity. In counties having a population of 750,000 or more, a county budget shall treat a support enforcement office as a department, as defined in s. 59.60 (2) (as), separate from all other departments, and administered by the county executive. If a county ceases to employ 1.0 or more full-time equivalent attorney positions in the office, the county may provide support enforcement under subd. 1.
(b) Attorneys responsible for support enforcement under par. (a) shall institute, commence, appear in or perform other prescribed duties in actions or proceedings under sub. (5) and ss. 49.22 (7), 767.205 (2), 767.501 and 767.80 and ch. 769.
(c) If the place of trial is changed to another county in any action or proceeding under par. (b), an attorney responsible for support enforcement under par. (a) shall continue to prosecute or defend the action or proceeding in the other county.
(7) Initiative to provide coordinated services. Except in Milwaukee County, the board may establish an initiative to provide coordinated services under s. 46.56.
(8) Rehabilitation facilities. The board may establish and maintain rehabilitation facilities in any part of the county under the jurisdiction of the sheriff as an extension of the jail, or separate from the jail under jurisdiction of a superintendent, to provide any person sentenced to the county jail with a program of rehabilitation for such part of the person’s sentence or commitment as the court determines will be of rehabilitative value to the prisoner. Rehabilitation facilities may be located outside of the county under a cooperative agreement under s. 302.44.
(8m) Secured residential care center for children and youth. The board may establish, or contract with a child welfare agency to establish, a secured residential care center for children and youth, on its own or jointly with one or more counties, under ss. 46.20 (1m), 59.52 (7), 66.0301, and 938.22 (1) (a), or may contract with another county to place juveniles in that county’s secured residential care center for children and youth. If a board contracts with another county to place a juvenile at that county’s secured residential care center for children and youth, that secured residential care center for children and youth shall be the county secured residential care center for children and youth of the placing county with respect to the placed juvenile.
(9) Group homes. The board may own or operate group homes, as defined in s. 48.02 (7).
(11) Senior citizen programs; appropriation; commission on aging. The board may:
(a) Appropriate funds to promote and assist county commissions on aging and senior citizens clubs and organizations within the county in their organization and activities. A county may cooperate with any private agency or group in such work.
(c) Appropriate money to defray the expenses incurred by private organizations that provide homemaking services to elderly and handicapped persons within the county if the services will enable the persons to remain self-sufficient and to live independently or with relatives.
(12) Guardian of or conservator for county hospital patients. In any county having a population of 100,000 or more, the board may authorize the county as a body corporate to act as guardian or conservator of the respective estates of patients in its county hospital or mental hospital, and also as guardians or conservators of the respective estates of residents of its county home or infirmary.
(13) Payments for abortions and abortion-related activity restricted.
59.53(13)(a) (a) No county, or agency or subdivision of the county, may authorize funds for or pay to a physician or surgeon or a hospital, clinic or other medical facility for the performance of an abortion except those permitted under and which are performed in accordance with s. 20.927.
(b) No county or agency or subdivision of a county may authorize payment of funds for a grant, subsidy or other funding involving a pregnancy program, project or service if s. 20.9275 (2) applies to the pregnancy program, project or service.
(14) Victims and witnesses of crimes. The board may appropriate money for the implementation and operation of a program under s. 950.06.
(15) Nursing associations. The board may appropriate money toward the support of organized and bona fide nursing associations in the county, such associations to have at least one qualified nurse.
(16) Isolation hospitals.
(a) In counties having a population of 30,000 or more the board may erect, establish and maintain isolation hospitals or places for the care and treatment of all persons afflicted with infectious, contagious and communicable diseases, requiring isolation and quarantine under the laws of the state, who are inmates of the charitable, penal, correctional and other institutions of said county or who are required to be cared for and treated at the expense of said county. The board may also provide for the care and treatment therein of all persons so afflicted, who are required to be cared for by the various municipalities in said counties, under such terms, conditions, rules and regulations, as to apportionment of cost of erection of such buildings and places and the expense of care and treatment of such persons afflicted, as may be agreed upon between the county board and the common council of such cities and the boards of such villages and towns, and each such council or board is hereby vested with power and authority to enter into such contracts and to appropriate such funds as may be necessary to carry into execution all contracts so made.
(b) All isolation hospitals and other places, when erected or established in counties having a county board of administration, shall be conducted under the control and management of the board of administration in the same manner and to the same extent as other institutions under the control of the board of administration, and in other counties the isolation hospitals and other places shall be conducted under the control and management of the county board. Any resident of this state who is not indigent may be received into, treated and cared for in an isolation hospital or other place upon the terms and conditions and at the rate or pay established and fixed by the board having charge of the isolation hospital or other place; provided, however, that indigent and destitute sick persons shall be cared for and have preference of admission to such hospitals and places.
(17) Aid to immigration societies.
(a) A board may appropriate an amount not to exceed $1,000 in any one year for the purpose of assisting a county association of the citizens of the county, or an association composed of the citizens of 2 or more counties of which the citizens of the county are members, organized solely for the purpose of inducing immigration to the state.
(b) The disbursement of an appropriation made under this subsection shall be under the supervision of the chairperson of the board, the clerk and the treasurer, and in all cases after such an appropriation has been made, there shall be filed with the clerk a sworn statement by the treasurer of the immigration society for whose benefit the appropriation was made, showing that the amount of the appropriation has been used by the association for the purpose of inducing immigration to the county making the appropriation and to adjoining counties, and itemized bills for the expenditure of a sum equal to the appropriation duly verified shall accompany the statement of the treasurer. Upon the approval of the statement and the itemized bills, by the county officers above named, the money so appropriated shall be paid by the proper officers of the county making the same into the treasury of the immigration association.
(18) Immigration board.
(a) The county board may create an immigration board consisting of 3 to 5 members, one of whom shall be the county surveyor. The immigration board shall meet, and its members shall receive such compensation and expenses and shall serve for the terms that the county board determines.
(b) The immigration board shall aid in promoting settlement of vacant agricultural lands in the county, and shall protect prospective settlers from unfair practices.
(c) The county board may in any year appropriate for the carrying out of the work of the immigration board a sum not to exceed $5,000.
(19) Joint operation of health-related service. The board may authorize the trustees of county hospitals, together with a private or public organization or affiliation, to organize, establish and participate in the governance and operation of an entity to operate, wholly or in part, any health-related service; to participate in the financing of the entity; and to provide administrative and financial services or resources for its operation on terms prescribed by the board.
(20) Work centers. The board may establish and operate a work center licensed under s. 104.07 to provide employment for severely handicapped individuals, except that in a county with a population of 750,000 or more, the county executive shall be in charge of the operation of the work center.
(21) Operation of relief programs. The board may establish and operate a program of relief for a specific class or classes of persons residing in that county, except that in a county with a population of 750,000 or more, the county executive shall be in charge of the operation of the program of relief. The county may set such eligibility criteria to obtain relief, and may provide such services, commodities or money as relief, as the county determines to be reasonable and necessary under the circumstances. The program may include work components. The county may enact any ordinances necessary or useful to the operation of a relief program under this subsection. Counties may use vehicle registration information from the department of transportation in determining eligibility for relief programs under this subsection.
(22) County housing authorities.
(a) Sections 66.1201 to 66.1211 shall apply to counties, except as otherwise provided in this subsection, or as clearly indicated otherwise by the context.
(b) The powers and duties conferred and imposed by ss. 66.1201 to 66.1211 upon mayors and councils are conferred upon boards, and the powers and duties of specified city officials under ss. 66.1201 to 66.1211 are conferred upon county officials performing duties similar to the duties of such specified city officials.
(c) The area of operation of a housing authority created in and for a county is all of the county for which it is created, but a county housing authority may not undertake any housing project within the boundaries of any municipality unless a resolution has been adopted by the governing body of the municipality, and by any housing authority which has been created in that municipality, declaring that there is need for the county housing authority to exercise its powers within that municipality.
(d) County housing authorities created under this subsection are urged to utilize those provisions of the federal housing laws whereby private developers may acquire land, build housing projects according to federal standards and turn them over to such housing authorities for due consideration.
(23) Housing authorities, counties having only one town.
(a) The provisions of ss. 66.1201 to 66.1211 shall apply to any county having only one town, except as otherwise provided in this subsection or clearly indicated otherwise by the context, and any housing authority established under this subsection may participate in any state grants-in-aid for housing in the same manner as city housing authorities created under ss. 66.1201 to 66.1211.
(b) The powers and duties conferred and imposed by ss. 66.1201 to 66.1211 upon mayors and councils are conferred upon boards, and the powers and duties of specified city officials under those sections are conferred upon county officials performing duties similar to the duties of the specified city officials.
(c) Eligible low-income residents of the county who are 62 years of age or older may be given first preference in the selection of tenants for housing provided under the authority of this subsection. The housing may, insofar as possible, be designed specifically for the foregoing class of residents.
(d) The area of operation of a housing authority created in and for a county under this subsection is all of the county for which it is created.
(24) Government relations. In any county with a population of 750,000 or more, if the county has an office of intergovernmental relations or a department or subunit of a department that provides lobbying services for the county, that office, department, or subunit shall employ one individual who is responsible for representing the interests of, and reports to, the county executive and one individual who is responsible for representing the interests of, and reports to, the county board.
(25) Milwaukee County mental health. The Milwaukee County board has no jurisdiction and may not take any actions, including under ss. 59.52 (6) and (31), 66.0301, and 66.0607 (2), related to mental health functions, programs, and services.