MADISON, WI (WTAQ) - The Wisconsin Senate's most moderate Republican plans to offer a new compromise to the bill which makes it harder for schools to dump their Indian mascots.
Dale Schultz of Richland Center says he'll ask his GOP colleagues to accept a plan next month that would let schools settle their own disputes with their Native American critics.
Schultz aide Todd Allbaugh tells the Madison Capital Times that the state's education department would review all 35 school Indian mascots and nicknames, instead of waiting for complaints. If the agency finds them discriminatory, school boards would negotiate settlements with the Great Lakes Inter-Tribal Council.
Allbaugh said the Indians' input would presumably avoid future lawsuits.
The idea is based on what happened recently in the Wisconsin Dells School District, where the Ho-Chunk tribe reached a compromise on using the Chiefs as the school's name. In that deal, the Ho-Chunk presented a headdress to the high school, where it's displayed along with an explanation of the tribe's ties to the community.
Allbaugh said the compromise preserves local control.
Assembly Republican Steve Nass of Whitewater said he won't accept it. Nass's chief of staff said his boss already compromised on the issue, by scrapping his plan to dump the state's Indian name review law altogether.