Gov. Evers signs bills increasing minimum OWI sentence, state trooper pay

MADISON -- Gov. Evers signed over a dozen bills Friday, Feb. 28. Among them are bills that raise the minimum sentence for operating while intoxicated charged and pay for Wisconsin State Patrol troopers.

Under one of the newly-signed bills, the minimum sentence for people convicted of a fifth or sixth OWI offense rises from six months to 18 months in prison -- with some judicial discretion.

“Too many Wisconsinites have experienced the consequences of drunk driving firsthand and it continues to be a concerning issue across our state,” said Gov. Evers. “It's an important issue and we have work to do to combat drunk driving so we can keep our communities safe.”

A separate bill provides a "technical fix" to the state's "four strikes and you're out" act that would revoke the license of anyone convicted of four or more OWI offenses.

In regard to state trooper pay, a new series of pay structures will take effect. Those changes will also be assessed retroactively, dating back to the 2017-2018.