Evers vetoes allowing sex offenders to live near schools

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MADISON, Wis. (AP) — Gov. Tony Evers has vetoed a bill that would have allowed violent sex offenders to live within 1,500 feet of schools and other places where children are likely to be present.

Former Gov. Scott Walker vetoed the same law change in 2018.

The intention was to give counties more flexibility in where to place sexually violent people who are placed on supervised release.

Evers says in his veto message Friday that he objects to weakening protections in the law keeping sexually violent offenders away from schools, day care centers and other similar facilities. He says providing safe spaces for children is one of the most vital responsibilities of society.

Supporters argued urban areas in particular needed more flexibility to find housing for the offenders in areas where the 1,500-foot restriction was too limiting.

Sexually violent offenders are a small subset of the larger population of registered sex offenders.

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