Rep. Suder leaves Assembly for job with Walker administration - WQOW TV: Eau Claire, WI NEWS18 News, Weather, and Sports

Rep. Suder leaves Assembly for job with Public Service Commission

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MADISON (WKOW) -- Assembly Majority Leader Scott Suder (R-Abbotsford) is leaving the state legislature to take a job in Governor Scott Walker's administration. 

Rep. Suder will serve as the Public Service Commission's Division Administrator for Water Compliance and Consumer Affairs.

Activity at the State Capitol has been magnified since the protests of 2011 and Suder has been right in the middle of it all, from the controversy of Act 10 to the change in mining laws that he co-authored.

"We went through a lot," reflected Rep. Suder.  "And I think the fruits of our labor are being proven as a result of our surplus, the tax cuts we were recently able to initiate." 

But after 14 years in the Assembly and 2 1/2 years as majority leader, Suder says the time is right to take a political appointment.

"I'm excited about the management experience opportunity and to work for the Walker Administration is an opportunity, professionally, I just couldn't pass up," said Rep. Suder.

"I am very sad to see him go as the majority leader of the Assembly.  We're a good team," said Assembly Speaker Robin Vos (R-Rochester).

But Speaker Vos says he understands Suder's need for a new challenge.

Meanwhile, officials at one environmental group who wanted to remain anonymous question Suder's qualifications for his new job.  They say the mining bill he authored will only harm Wisconsin's water.

"I think I have the experience to work there, but it will be a professional role that won't be based on politics," countered Rep. Suder.  "It will be based on science and decisions that will be made in a joint effort for everyone, not just Republicans, not just Democrats."

Suder's last day in the Assembly will be September 3rd.

"The next day, my hope is to have a leadership election to fill his role," said Speaker Vos.

Speaker Pro-Tempore Bill Kramer (R-Waukesha) and Rep. Dean Knudson (R-Hudson) are both vying to the by next majority leader.

"Difference in styles perhaps, but at the end of the day whichever decision that caucus makes is one I'll be happy to work with," said Speaker Vos.

Suder's new job figures to come with a significant pay raise.   His predecessor in that position earned over $97,000 in 2012, far above the $50,000 a year Suder earns as a legislator.

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MADISON (WKOW) -- Republican Rep. Scott Suder has announced he'll retire from the Wisconsin State Assembly.

Suder says he'll be pursuing an opportunity with Gov. Scott Walker's administration. Suder, from Abbotsford, has served the 69th Assembly District for 14 years. He'll step down in early September.

The governor's office announced Wednesday afternoon Suder will be working at the Public Service Commission as Division Administrator for Water Compliance and Consumer Affairs. 

"Representative Suder has long served the residents of Wisconsin," Governor Walker said.  "The Public Service Commission will benefit from his talents and experience.  I thank Representative Suder for his work in the Legislature and I look forward to being able to work with him in this new capacity."

Suder released the following statement regarding his departure:

"I want to thank my constituents for entrusting me to represent their best interests as a member of the state Legislature. I look forward to serving citizens all across the state of Wisconsin in Scott Walker's Administration."

"I am proud of the work that has been done fighting on the behalf of my constituents and ensuring that they kept more of their hard-earned dollars, had stronger protections against predators to create a safer environment for their children, received access to resources ensuring that their small businesses could grow, and that their voices were not ignored by state agencies.
 
"Some of our hard-fought legislative victories include Jessica's Law, which ensured tough mandatory minimum sentences for first degree child sexual offenders and the Rural Jobs Act that provided millions in tax credits to help locate and grow rural businesses. The Mining for Jobs Act passed this legislative session will provide strong environmental protections for our natural resources and create thousands of family-supporting jobs.
 
"Throughout the many legislative sessions that I have been a part of, we were able to enact budgets that eliminated the structural deficit without raising taxes, reshape state government to make it more business friendly, and create a substantial state surplus as a result of our bold reforms.
 
"I also want to thank my colleagues for entrusting me to serve as Assembly Majority Leader for the past two sessions.  I am humbled by their support and am proud of the successful reforms we've passed to protect taxpayers across the entire state. I wish all of my colleagues on both sides of the aisle the best and encourage them to keep moving Wisconsin forward.  I will always cherish the friendships I have made on both the state and national levels.
 
"I want to give special thanks to my family for their understanding, sacrifice and patience.  Politics can be a rough business, and through thick and thin they have always supported me in so many ways, I cannot thank them enough.  In addition, I have been blessed with the opportunity to work with some of the most dedicated professionals I could have hoped for as members of my staff.  Without their hard work, I could not have had such a successful career.
 
"Finally, I want to again give thanks to my friends and neighbors throughout the entire 69th Assembly District, otherwise known as ‘God's Country', for their constant, unwavering support throughout these 14 years.  I am blessed to have had this unique opportunity to serve the great people of North Central Wisconsin and our great state as an elected member of the Wisconsin State Assembly.  It has truly been an honor and a privilege to serve and I thank them for their trust."

Capitol Bureau Chief Greg Neumann will have more on this story on 27 News at 5 and 6.

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