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LRB-2890/1
MPG:klm
2015 - 2016 LEGISLATURE
December 29, 2015 - Introduced by Representatives R. Brooks, Gannon, Allen,
Born, Czaja, Knodl, Swearingen, Vorpagel and Sanfelippo, cosponsored by
Senators Kapenga and Stroebel. Referred to Committee on Environment and
Forestry.
AB620,1,2 1An Act to amend 157.70 (2r) and 157.70 (5) (a); and to create 157.70 (5g) and
2157.70 (5r) of the statutes; relating to: requirements for cataloged burial sites.
Analysis by the Legislative Reference Bureau
This bill establishes a procedure for owners of burial sites that are currently
cataloged by the director of the State Historical Society and owners of certain land
contiguous to cataloged burial sites to challenge the existence of human remains in
the burial site. Current law requires the director to identify and record in a catalog
burial sites and, for land not platted for use as a cemetery, sufficient contiguous land
necessary to protect burial sites from disturbance. Subject to certain exceptions, the
disturbance of burial sites and cataloged land contiguous to burial sites is prohibited.
Under the bill, the director must issue a permit for the investigation of a
cataloged burial site to the owner of the burial site or to the owner of cataloged land
contiguous to the burial site if the burial site was cataloged before the date the bill
becomes law and the owner disputes the existence of human remains in the burial
site and applies for a permit. An owner issued a permit under the bill may, at the
owner's own expense, investigate the site for evidence of human remains using
investigational methods set forth in the bill. If the investigation finds no evidence
of human remains in the burial site, the director is required to remove the burial site
and contiguous land from the catalog.
For land that is cataloged on or after the date on which the bill becomes law, the
bill provides that no burial site on private property and no private land that is
contiguous to a burial site may be cataloged unless the director establishes that
human remains are present in the burial site based on investigational methods set
forth in the bill.

For further information see the state fiscal estimate, which will be printed as
an appendix to this bill.
The people of the state of Wisconsin, represented in senate and assembly, do
enact as follows:
AB620,1 1Section 1. 157.70 (2r) of the statutes is amended to read:
AB620,2,72 157.70 (2r) Site disturbance prohibited. Except as provided under subs. (4)
3and, (5), (5g), and (5r) and ss. 157.111 and 157.112, no person may intentionally cause
4or permit the disturbance of a burial site or cataloged land contiguous to a cataloged
5burial site. This subsection does not prohibit normal agricultural or silvicultural
6practices which do not disturb the human remains in a burial site or the surface
7characteristics of a burial site.
AB620,2 8Section 2. 157.70 (5) (a) of the statutes is amended to read:
AB620,2,129 157.70 (5) (a) No Except as provided under subs. (5g) and (5r), no person may
10intentionally cause or permit the disturbance of a cataloged burial site or the
11cataloged land contiguous to a cataloged burial site without a permit from the
12director issued under this subsection.
AB620,3 13Section 3. 157.70 (5g) of the statutes is created to read:
AB620,2,1814 157.70 (5g) Investigations of certain cataloged burial sites. (a) The director
15shall issue a permit for the investigation of a cataloged burial site under par. (b) to
16the owner of that burial site or to the owner of cataloged land contiguous to that
17burial site within 30 days after receiving an application for a permit under this
18subsection if all of the following conditions are satisfied:
AB620,2,2019 1. The burial site was cataloged before the effective date of this paragraph ....
20[LRB inserts date].
AB620,3,2
12. The owner disputes the existence of human remains in the burial site and
2applies for a permit under this subsection.
AB620,3,93 (b) An owner issued a permit under par. (a) may, at the owner's own expense,
4investigate the burial site for evidence of human remains using ground-penetrating
5radar, other imaging technology, or archaeological excavation and examination. The
6historical society shall provide the owner with a list of archaeologists and imaging
7technicians approved by the historical society, and the investigation under this
8paragraph shall be conducted by an archaeologist or imaging technician chosen by
9the owner from that list.
AB620,3,1210 (c) If an investigation under par. (b) finds no evidence of human remains in the
11burial site, the director shall remove the burial site and the cataloged land
12contiguous to the burial site from the catalog.
AB620,4 13Section 4. 157.70 (5r) of the statutes is created to read:
AB620,3,1914 157.70 (5r) Evidence of human remains required. No burial site on private
15property and no private land that is contiguous to a burial site may be cataloged on
16or after the effective date of this subsection .... [LRB inserts date], unless the director
17establishes that human remains are present in the burial site through written
18historical records corroborated by the results of ground-penetrating radar, other
19imaging technology, or archaeological excavation and examination.
AB620,3,2020 (End)
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