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Finance committee beefs up Milwaukee child welfare bureau

MADISON, Wis. (AP) — The Legislature’s finance committee has decided to beef up Bureau of Milwaukee Child Welfare staffing to help reduce a backlog of child abuse complaints.

Gov. Scott Walker’s budget calls for spending $1.6 million to hire 11 more employees in the bureau. The finance committee voted Thursday to adopt the governor’s plan as well as spend another $1 million to increase after-hours compensation and implement other employee retention policies.

According to the Legislative Fiscal Bureau, a large backlog of abuse complaints waiting for an initial assessment has been building within the bureau. As of the end of June 2014, 2,400 cases had been pending for more than 90 days.

The bureau has been making progress. As of January, 629 cases had been sitting for more than 90 days.

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