Beginning on July 1, 2011, in any employee retirement system of a 1st class city, except as otherwise provided in a collective bargaining agreement entered into under subch. IV of ch. 111
and except as provided in sub. (2)
, employees shall pay all employee required contributions for funding benefits under the retirement system. The employer may not pay on behalf of an employee any of the employee's share of the required contributions.
Effective date note
Sub. (1) is amended eff. 1-1-24 by 2023 Wis. Act 12
Effective date text
(1) Beginning on July 1, 2011, in any employee retirement system of a 1st class city, except as otherwise provided in a collective bargaining agreement entered into under subch. IV of ch. 111 and except as provided in subs. (2) and (3) employees shall pay all employee required contributions for funding benefits under the retirement system. The employer may not pay on behalf of an employee any of the employee's share of the required contributions.
An employer shall pay, on behalf of a nonrepresented law enforcement or fire fighting managerial employee, who was initially employed by the employer before July 1, 2011, the same contributions required by sub. (1)
that are paid by the employer for represented law enforcement or fire fighting personnel who were initially employed by the employer before July 1, 2011.
An employer shall pay, on behalf of a represented law enforcement or fire fighting employee, who was initially employed by the employer before July 1, 2011, and who on or after July 1, 2011, became employed in a nonrepresented law enforcement or fire fighting managerial position with the employer, or a successor employer in the event of a combined department that is created on or after July 1, 2011, the same contributions required by sub. (1)
that are paid by the employer for represented law enforcement or fire fighting personnel who were initially employed by the employer before July 1, 2011.
In any employee retirement system of a 1st class city that is located in a county with a population of more than 750,000 and that has elected to become a participating employer in the Wisconsin Retirement System under s. 40.21 (1)
, except as otherwise provided in sub. (2)
, irrespective of the funding status of the retirement system, the employer shall pay the remaining balance of actuarially determined normal cost contributions each year that is not covered by the employee contributions.
History: 2011 a. 10
; 2023 a. 12
This section concerns a matter of primarily statewide concern, and, accordingly, survives the plaintiffs' home rule challenge under article XI, section 3 (1), of the Wisconsin Constitution. Madison Teachers, Inc. v. Walker, 2014 WI 99
, 358 Wis. 2d 1
, 851 N.W.2d 337
This section does not violate the contract clause, article I, section 12
, of the Wisconsin Constitution. Nothing in 2011 Wis. Act 10
purports to reduce, impair, or affect in any way benefits that have already accrued to plan members. This section modifies only the method by which the Milwaukee ERS is funded; the pension, disability, and death benefits that accrue to plan members pursuant to the terms and conditions in the Milwaukee Retirement System ordinance remain unaffected. Madison Teachers, Inc. v. Walker, 2014 WI 99
, 358 Wis. 2d 1
, 851 N.W.2d 337
Employee retirement system of a 1st class city; duty disability benefits for a mental injury. 62.624(1)(1)
If an employee retirement system of a 1st class city offers a duty disability benefit, the employee retirement system may only provide the duty disability benefit for a mental injury if all of the following apply:
The mental injury resulted from a situation of greater dimensions than the day-to-day mental stresses and tensions and post-traumatic stress that all similarly situated employees must experience as part of the employment.
The employer certifies that the mental injury is a duty-related injury.
If an employee retirement system of a 1st class city determines that an applicant is not eligible for duty disability benefits for a mental injury, the applicant may appeal the employee retirement system's determination to the department of workforce development. In hearing an appeal under this subsection, the department of workforce development shall follow the procedures under ss. 102.16
This section applies to participants in an employee retirement system of a 1st class city who first apply for duty disability benefits for a mental injury on or after July 14, 2015.
History: 2015 a. 55
Amortization period for employer contributions.
Notwithstanding any provision of law or actuarial rule, beginning in the calendar quarter of the year that a tax is first imposed under s. 77.701 (1)
, in any retirement system of a 1st class city, the required annual employer contribution shall be calculated using a 30-year amortization period and an annual investment return assumption that is the same as or less than the annual investment return assumption used by the Wisconsin Retirement System for participating employees, as defined in s. 40.02 (46)
. Future unfunded actuarial accrued liability due to factors such as market returns and standard actuarial practices may be amortized on the basis of standard actuarial practices. The amortization period and investment return assumptions in this section shall supersede any amortization period and investment return assumption adopted by the actuary or retirement board of the retirement system of the city. No trustee or administrator of a retirement system of a 1st class city shall be subject to liability for complying with this section.
Effective date note
This section is created eff. 1-1-24 by 2023 Wis. Act 12
History: 2023 a. 12
Benefit funds for officers and employees of 1st class cities. 62.63(1)(1)
Establishment of funds.
By a majority vote of the members-elect, the common council of a 1st class city may create, establish, maintain and administer annuity and benefit funds for city officers and employees, including officers and employees of boards, agencies, departments and divisions of the city government and of a housing authority established under s. 66.1201
By a majority vote of its members, the common council of a 1st class city may create a retirement board to administer an annuity and benefit fund under this section. The retirement board may make rules and regulations under which all participants contribute to and receive benefits from the fund. Members of the board shall serve without compensation. Three members of the board shall be city employees elected by the members of the retirement system and shall serve 4-year terms and 5 members shall be appointed under s. 62.51
and shall serve 3-year terms. The common council may provide for contribution by the city to the annuity and benefit fund. The executive director of the retirement board shall be appointed under s. 62.51
Investment of retirement funds.
The board of a retirement system of a 1st class city, whose funds are independent of control by the investment board, may invest funds from the system, in excess of the amount of cash required for current operations, in the same manner as is authorized for investments under s. 881.01
Exemption of funds and benefits from taxation, execution and assignment.
Except as provided in s. 49.852
and subject to s. 767.75
, all moneys and assets of a retirement system of a 1st class city and all benefits and allowances, both before and after payment to any beneficiary, granted under the retirement system are exempt from any state, county or municipal tax or from attachment or garnishment process. The benefits and allowances may not be seized, taken, detained or levied upon by virtue of any executions, or any process or proceeding issued out of or by any court of this state, for the payment and ratification in whole or in part of any debt, claim, damage, demand or judgment against any member of or beneficiary under the retirement system. No member of or beneficiary under the retirement system may assign any benefit or allowance either by way of mortgage or otherwise. The prohibition against assigning a benefit or allowance does not apply to assignments made for the payment of insurance premiums. The exemption from taxation under this section does not apply with respect to any tax on income.
Treatment of abandoned retirement accounts.
Funds in employee retirement accounts of a retirement system of a 1st class city, which are presumed abandoned under subch. II of ch. 177
, are not subject to the custody of the state as unclaimed property under ch. 177
, but shall be retained by the retirement system and used to reduce employer funding obligations to the retirement system. The board of a retirement system of a 1st class city shall devise rules and regulations for determining the conditions under which employee retirement accounts are presumed abandoned and for determining the manner in which funds in the abandoned employee retirement accounts may be used to reduce employer funding obligations to the retirement system.
Sub. (4) bars a court from directly dividing the pension. However, the pension is a marital asset accumulated during the course of the marriage. The court has discretionary authority to order the employee spouse to make a specific payout election or enter other orders in the event a selection is made that is counter to the non-employee spouse's interests. Sub. (4) does not usurp the court's ability to effectuate an equitable division of the parties' assets, including the pension. Waln v. Waln, 2005 WI App 54
, 280 Wis. 2d 253
, 694 N.W.2d 452
Death benefit payments to foreign beneficiaries.
The common council of a 1st class city may provide that under the city's retirement system no beneficiary may be designated for the payment of any retirement allowance, pension or proceeds of a member of the retirement system if the beneficiary is not a resident of either the United States or Canada. If a beneficiary is designated who is neither a resident of the United States nor Canada, any contributions or retirement allowance which would have been paid to the beneficiary had the beneficiary been a resident of either the United States or Canada is payable to the estate of the deceased member of the retirement system. The common council may also provide that if a death benefit would be payable because of the death of a member of the retirement system and the designated beneficiary of the death benefit is not a resident of either the United States or Canada, the death benefit which would have been paid had the designated beneficiary been a resident of either the United States or Canada is payable to the estate of the deceased member.
History: 1991 a. 316
; 1999 a. 150
; Stats. 1999 s. 62.65.
Uninsured motorist coverage; 1st class cities.
A 1st class city shall provide uninsured motorist motor vehicle liability insurance coverage for motor vehicles owned by the city and operated by city employees in the course of employment. The coverage required by this section shall have at least the limits prescribed for uninsured motorist coverage under s. 632.32 (4) (a) 1.
History: 1983 a. 537
; Stats. 1983 s. 66.187; 1983 a. 538
; Stats. 1983 s. 66.189; 1999 a. 150
; Stats. 1999 s. 62.67; 2009 a. 28
This section requires the city to provide uninsured motorist coverage for its vehicles regardless of whether it is able to obtain coverage from an insurance carrier. American Family Mutual Insurance Co. v. City of Milwaukee, 148 Wis. 2d 280
, 435 N.W.2d 280
(Ct. App. 1988).
This section puts the city in the position of an insurer subject to the subrogation rights of its officer's personal insurers. Millers National Insurance Co. v. City of Milwaukee, 184 Wis. 2d 155
, 516 N.W.2d 516
(Ct. App. 1994).
This section requires the city to be the primary provider of uninsured motorist coverage. Norman v. City of Milwaukee, 198 Wis. 2d 98
, 542 N.W.2d 473
(Ct. App. 1995), 95-0009
A self-insured city is not an insurer writing policies subject to s. 632.32 (4m) (a) 1. and is not subject to the requirement to provide underinsured motorist coverage. Van Erden v. Sobczak, 2004 WI App 40
, 271 Wis. 2d 163
, 677 N.W.2d 718
First class city utilities. 62.69(1)(1)
This section applies to 1st class cities.
In this subsection, “commissioner of public works" includes any board of public works, or commissioner of public works, or other officer of the city having control of the city's public works.
In this subsection, all acts authorized to be done by the commissioner of public works, except enforcement of regulations approved by the common council, shall be approved by the common council before the acts may take effect.
Water rates shall be collected in the manner and by whom the common council determines, and shall be accounted for and paid to the other officials in the manner and at the times that the council prescribes. Persons collecting water rates shall give a bond to cover all the duties in an amount prescribed by the council. Final accounting shall be made to the comptroller and final disposition of money shall be made to the city treasurer.
When the city owns its water system, the commissioner of public works may make and enforce bylaws, rules and regulations in relation to the water system, and, before the actual introduction of water, the commissioner shall make bylaws, rules and regulations, fixing uniform water rates to be paid for the use of water furnished by the water system, and fixing the manner of distributing and supplying water for use or consumption, and for withholding or turning off water for cause. The commissioner may alter, modify or repeal the bylaws, rules and regulations.
Water rates are due as the common council provides. To all water rates remaining unpaid 20 days after the due date, there shall be added a penalty of 5 percent of the amount due, and if the rates remain unpaid for 10 additional days, water may be turned off the premises. If the supply of water is turned off, water may not be turned on to the premises until all delinquent rates and penalties, and a sum not exceeding $2 for turning the water off and on, are paid. The penalty and charge may be made when payment is made to a collector sent to the premises. On or before the date on which rates become due, a written or printed notice or bill shall be mailed or personally delivered to the occupant or, upon written request, to the owner at the location the owner states, of all premises subject to the payment of water rates, stating the amount due, the time when and the place where the rates can be paid and the penalty for neglect of payment.
All water rates for water furnished to any building or premises, all payments owing on loans provided as financial assistance under s. 196.372 (2)
to the owner of any building or premises, and the cost of repairing meters, service pipes, stops or stop boxes, are a lien on the lot, part of lot or parcel of land on which the building or premises is located. If any water rates, those loan payments, or bills for the repairing of meters, service pipes, stops or stop boxes remain unpaid on October 1, the unpaid rates, loan payments, or bills shall be certified to the city comptroller on or before November 1, and shall be placed by the comptroller upon the tax roll and collected in the same manner as other taxes on real estate are collected in the city. The charge for water supplied by the city in all premises where meters are attached and connected shall be at rates fixed by the commissioner of public works and for the quantity indicated by the meter. If the commissioner of public works determines that the quantity indicated by the meter is materially incorrect or if a meter has been off temporarily due to repairs, the commissioner shall estimate the quantity used, and the determination is conclusive. No water rate or rates duly assessed against any property may be remitted or changed except by the common council. Under this paragraph, if an unpaid charge or bill is for utility service furnished and metered by the waterworks directly to a mobile home unit in a licensed mobile home park, the delinquent amount is a lien on the mobile home unit rather than a lien on the parcel of real estate on which the mobile home unit is located. A lien on a mobile home unit may be enforced using the procedures under s. 779.48 (2)
The city commissioner of public works may issue a permit to the county in which the city is located, to any national home for disabled soldiers, or to any other applicant to obtain water from the city's water system for use outside of the limits of the city and for that purpose to connect any pipe that is laid outside of the city limits with water pipe in the city. No permit may be issued until the applicant files with the commissioner of public works a bond in the sum and with the surety that the commissioner approves on the condition: that the applicant will obey the rules and regulations prescribed by the commissioner for the use of the water; that the applicant will pay all charges fixed by the commissioner for the use of the water as measured by a meter to be approved by the commissioner, including the proportionate cost of fluoridating the water and, except as to water furnished directly to county or other municipal properties, which may not be less than one-quarter more than those charged to the inhabitants of the city for like use of water; that the applicant will pay to the city a water pipe assessment if the property to be supplied with water has frontage on any thoroughfare forming the city boundary line in which a water main has been or shall be laid, and at the rate prescribed by the commissioner; if the property to be supplied does not front on a city boundary but is distant from a boundary, that a main pipe of the same size, class and standard as terminates at the city boundary shall be extended, and the entire cost shall be paid by the applicant for the extension; that the water main shall be laid according to city specifications and under city inspection; that the water main and appliances shall become the property of the city, without any compensation for the main or appliances, if the property supplied with water by the extension or any part of the property is annexed to or in any manner becomes a part of the city; and that the applicant will pay to the city all damages that it sustains, arising out of the manner in which the connection is made or water supply is used. In granting a permit to a county or to a national home for disabled soldiers, the commissioner of public works may waive the giving of a bond. Every permit shall be issued upon the understanding that the city is not liable for any damage in case of failure to supply water by reason of any condition beyond its control.
The commissioner of public works shall prescribe and regulate the kind of water meters to be used in the city and the manner of attaching and connecting the water meters, and may make other rules for the use and control of water meters as are necessary to secure reliable and just measurement of the quantity of water used; and may alter and amend the rules as necessary for the purposes named. If the owner or occupant of any premises, where the attaching and connection of a water meter may lawfully be required, neglects or fails to attach and connect a water meter, as is required according to the rules established by the commissioner of public works, for 30 days after the expiration of the time within which the owner or occupant is notified by the commissioner of public works to attach and connect a meter, the commissioner of public works may cause the water supplied by the city to be cut off from the premises, and it shall not be restored except upon the terms and conditions prescribed by the commissioner of public works.
The commissioner of public works may prescribe and regulate the size of connections made with the distribution mains for supplying automatic sprinkler systems and fix an annual charge for such service.
The commissioner of public works may make rules and regulations for the proper ventilating and trapping of all drains, soil pipes and fixtures constructed to connect with or be used in connection with the sewerage or water supply of the city. The common council may provide by ordinance for the enforcement of the rules and regulations, including penalties. The commissioner may make rules to regulate the use of vent, soil, drain, sewer or water pipes in all buildings in the city proposed to be connected with the city water supply or sewerage, specifying the dimensions, strength and material. The commissioner may prohibit the introduction into any building of any style of water fixture, tap or connection determined to be dangerous to health or unfit to be used. The commissioner shall require a rigid inspection by a skilled and competent inspector under the direction of the commissioner of all plumbing and draining work and water and sewer connections in any building in the city, and unless the work and connections are done or made according to rules of and approved by the commissioner, no connection of the premises with the city sewerage or water supply may be made.
The commissioner of public works shall make an annual report to the council of the commissioner's doings under this section, the state of the water fund and the general condition of the water system. The report, after being submitted to the council, shall be filed in the office of the comptroller.
In this subsection, “electric plant" means a plant for the production, transmission, delivery and furnishing of electric light, heat or power directly to the public.
If the city decides to acquire an electric plant or any other public utility in accordance with the provisions of this section, the mayor, prior to the city taking possession of the property, shall appoint, subject to the confirmation of the council, 7 persons of recognized business experience and standing to act as the board of directors for the utility. Two persons shall be appointed for a term of 2 years, 2 for a term of 4 years, 2 for a term of 6 years, and one for a term of 8 years. Successors shall be appointed for terms of 10 years each. A director may be removed by the mayor with the approval of the council for misconduct in office or for unreasonable absence from meetings of the directors.
Utility directors may: employ a manager experienced in the management of electric plants or other public utilities, fix his or her compensation and the other terms and conditions of employment and remove him or her at pleasure, subject to the terms and conditions of his or her employment; advise and consult with the manager and other employees as to any matter pertaining to maintenance, operation or extension of the utility; and perform other duties as ordinarily devolve upon a board of directors of a corporation organized under ch. 180
not inconsistent with this section and the laws governing 1st class cities. No money may be raised or authorized to be raised by the board of directors other than from revenues derived from the operation of the utility, except by action of the council.
The manager appointed by the board of directors may manage and control the utility, subject to the powers conferred upon the board of directors and the council under this subsection and may appoint assistants and all other employees which the manager considers necessary and fix their compensation and other terms and conditions of employment, except that the board of directors may prescribe rules for determining the fitness of persons for positions and employment.
The council shall fix the compensation, if any, of members of the board of directors and has other powers it possesses with reference to electric plants and other public utilities.
Pedestrian malls in 1st class cities. 62.71(1)(1)
The purpose of this section is to authorize a 1st class city to undertake, develop, finance, construct and operate pedestrian malls as local improvements.
In this section:
“Annual pedestrian mall improvement" includes any reconstruction, replacement or repair of trees, plantings, furniture, shelters or other pedestrian mall facilities.
“Annual pedestrian mall improvement cost" includes planning consultant fees, public liability and property damage insurance premiums, reimbursement of the city's reasonable and necessary costs incurred in operating and maintaining a pedestrian mall, levying and collecting special assessments and taxes, publication costs, and any other costs related to annual improvements and the operation and maintenance of a pedestrian mall.
“Board of assessment" means the board created under subch. II of ch. 32
, for the purpose of estimating benefits and damages in connection with the creation or improvement of a pedestrian mall.
“Business district" means an existing recognized area of a city principally used for commerce or trade.
“Commissioner of public works" means the board of public works, commissioner of public works, or any other city board or officer vested with authority over public works.
“Community development advisory body" means any corporation or unincorporated association whose shareholders or members are owners or occupants of property included in a proposed or existing pedestrian mall district.
“Council" and “common council" mean the governing body of the city.
“Intersecting street" means, unless the council declares otherwise, any street which meets or intersects a pedestrian mall, but includes only those portions of the intersecting street which lay between the mall or mall intersection and the first intersection of the intersecting street with a street open to general vehicular traffic.
“Mall intersection" means any intersection of a city street which is part of a pedestrian mall with any other street.
“Owner" includes any person holding the record title of an estate in possession in fee simple or for life, or a vendor of record under a land contract for the sale of an estate in possession in fee simple or for life.
“Pedestrian mall" means any street, land or appurtenant fixture designed primarily for the movement, safety, convenience and enjoyment of pedestrians.
“Pedestrian mall district" means any geographical division of the city designated by the board of assessment for the purpose of undertaking, developing, financing, constructing and operating a pedestrian mall.
“Pedestrian mall improvement" includes any construction or installation of pedestrian thoroughfares, perimeter parking facilities, public seating, park areas, outdoor cafes, skywalks, sewers, shelters, trees, flower or shrubbery plantings, sculptures, newsstands, telephone booths, traffic signs, sidewalks, traffic lights, kiosks, water pipes, fire hydrants, street lighting, ornamental signs, ornamental lights, graphics, pictures, paintings, trash receptacles, display cases, marquees, awnings, canopies, overhead or underground radiant heating pipes or fixtures, walls, bollards, chains and all other fixtures, equipment, facilities and appurtenances which, in the council's judgment, will enhance the movement, safety, convenience and enjoyment of pedestrians and benefit the city and the affected property owners.
“Skywalk" means any elevated pedestrian way.
“Street" means any public road, street, boulevard, highway, alley, lane, court or other way used for public travel.
Acquisition, improvement and establishment of pedestrian malls. 62.71(3)(a)
Upon petition of a community development advisory body or upon its own motion, the council may by resolution designate lands to be acquired, improved and operated as pedestrian malls or may by ordinance designate streets, including a federal, state, county or any other highway system with the approval of the jurisdiction responsible for maintaining that highway system, in or adjacent to business districts to be improved for primarily pedestrian uses. The council may acquire by gift, purchase, eminent domain, or otherwise, land, real property or rights-of-way for inclusion in a pedestrian mall district or for use in connection with pedestrian mall purposes. The council may make improvements on mall intersections, intersecting streets or upon facilities acquired for parking and other related purposes, if the improvements are necessary or convenient to the operation of the mall.
In establishing or improving a pedestrian mall, the council may narrow any street designated a part of a pedestrian mall, reconstruct or remove any street vaults or hollow sidewalks existing by virtue of a permit issued by the city, construct crosswalks at any point on the pedestrian mall, or cause the roadway to curve and meander within the limits of the street without regard to the uniformity of width of the street or curve or absence of curve in the center line of the street.
Subject to subd. 2.
, the council may authorize the payment of the entire cost of any pedestrian mall improvement established under this section by appropriation from the general fund, by taxation or special assessments, and by the issuance of municipal bonds, general or particular special improvement bonds, revenue bonds, mortgages or certificates, or by any combination of these financing methods.
If a pedestrian mall improvement is financed by special assessments and special improvement bonds are not issued, the special assessments, when collected, shall be applied to the payment of the principal and interest on any general obligation bonds issued or to the reduction of general taxes if general obligation bonds or the general tax levy is used to finance the improvement.
The council may exercise the powers granted by this subsection only if it makes the findings required under sub. (4)
and complies with the procedures and requirements under subs. (5)
No pedestrian mall may be established under sub. (3)
unless the council finds all of the following:
That the proposed pedestrian mall will be located primarily in or adjacent to a business district.
That there exist reasonably convenient alternate routes for private vehicles to other parts of the city and state.
That the continued unlimited use by private vehicles of all or part of the streets in the proposed mall district endangers pedestrian safety.
That properties abutting the proposed mall can be reasonably and adequately provided with emergency vehicle services and delivery and receiving of merchandise or materials either from other streets or alleys or by the limited use of the pedestrian mall for these purposes.