Legislators offer contrary views on phone-in meetings

State Senator Dave Hansen and Rep. Joel Kitchens feel differently when it comes to calling into committee meetings in Madison.  The debate has grabbed national headlines after Democratic Assembly member Jimmy Anderson charged Speaker Robin Vos with excluding him from committee hearings because of his disability. Rep. Anderson is paralyzed from the chest down as a result of a car accident in 2010 and requires the assistance of health aides to help with many tasks. Senator Hansen says Democrats and Republicans routinely call into committee meeting in the state Senate and believes they are not disruptive.

The few times Rep. Kitchens has called into meetings in the past he felt he was not a part of the process.  Rep. Kitchens is the committee chairperson for the environment committee Rep. Anderson sits on and says if he was asked, he would make accommodations.

Rep. Anderson told last week that he has a right to call into meetings because of the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990.

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