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Lawsuit settled over how state gives out voter info

Officials have settled a lawsuit from a political consulting firm over the way the state gives out voter information.

The Government Accountability Board will pay $7,500 in legal fees to the Michigan firm of Practical Political Consulting.

The company buys data about Wisconsin voters and uses it to create voter lists for campaigns and political parties.

The firm filed a pair of lawsuits in 2006-07 accusing the old state Elections Board of being too slow and inadequate in handing over its voter data.

The Government Accountability Board, which now handles elections, was facing a trial in the case before a settlement was reached.

Board director Kevin Kennedy said it was a matter of both parties agreeing they should have done a better job communicating.

He said the company had a sense that the state was not giving out data fast enough - and his agency wasn't sure exactly what the firm had been asking for.

The settlement called for a meeting between the two sides which has been held.

The state agency will designate an employee to handle the firm's requests on a more rapid basis. They'll also work on a procedure for handling disagreements.