MADISION (WSAU-Wheeler News) Governor Scott Walker said his administration did not take Scott Suder's controversial handling of a state grant into account when Suder was appointed to a high-paying state job. The Republican Walker said yesterday that the Public Service Commission looked at Suder's wide variety of experience over two decades as a lawmaker and a legislative aide.
Suder was on the hot seat when he resigned from the Assembly, for his role in getting a half-million-dollar grant into the state budget to promote hunting-and-fishing. Walker said he didn't know enough about the matter to conclude whether Suder handled the matter properly. Critics said the criteria was narrow enough to almost assure that the politically-connected United Sportsmen would win the grant. It did, but Walker ended up scrapping the grant after questions about the group's tax status.
Democrats wanted the Legislature's Joint Finance Committee to review the matter yesterday. Panel chairman John Nygren said there were problems with the grant -- but there was no need for the committee to take it up because it was canceled in the end.
Suder resigned September 3rd as the Assembly G-O-P Majority Leader. He'll become the water compliance and consumer affairs administrator for the P-S-C on October 7th at a salary of $94,000 a year -- almost twice what he made as a lawmaker.