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  Understanding the Budget Process Week by Week

June 26, 2017

No News is Good News, Right?

 State Rep. Steve Doyle

State Capitol
PO Box 8952
Madison, WI 53708

(608) 266-0631
(888) 534-0094


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You might be wondering what on earth is going on with the budget right now. Well, me too. The majority party is still struggling to reach agreements on transportation funding and the K-12 public education budget.

Here’s a quick rundown of where things stand:


6-26 Transportation.JPGThe leader of the Senate is saying his house will support borrowing $850 million for roads, which is $350 million more than what the Governor proposed. The Assembly leadership does not support borrowing as a long-term solution for road repairs. Under the governor’s budget 22 cents of every dollar spent on transportation would go toward paying the interest on previous transportation borrowing. The Senate wants to shift this new borrowing to be paid back from a different pot of money so that number does not go up. But the Assembly is concerned that the shift would take money away from other programs.


6-26 Education.JPGThe minority members of the JFC recently proposed their K-12 plan to invest $729 million more in education than what the governor proposed. The plan also would lower property taxes by almost $25 million, allocate the resources to school districts based on the Fair Funding proposal from State Superintendent Evers, and restores $500 million in local revenue authority to school districts. The Assembly Republicans meanwhile have proposed their own plan to spend $90 million less on schools than the Governor and raise property taxes by over $90 million. While the Senate Republicans have yet to share the details of their plan, they have said they want to direct funding to rural and poorer school districts.

Other Updates

Earlier this month, the JFC officially rejected the Governor’s plan for self-insurance for state employees.

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You might remember from previous updates that the Governor said this move would save the state $60 million which would go to education funding. The JFC chose to keep the current insurance model but made changes in the program to find roughly $64 million in savings. $23 million will come from savings from negotiating with insurance companies, $15 million from health plan changes including increasing costs for employees by 10% or more, and $26 million from dipping into the program’s reserves.

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The JFC previously said they were planning to meet last week but they have pushed off meeting until this week… we think. No one is really sure the timeline for when the JFC will finish their work on the budget so we are all watching and waiting. And the fiscal deadline of July 1 is fast approaching.

In the meantime, feel free to contact me with your thoughts, questions and concerns about the budget. I am always ready to help you navigate this incredibly complicated piece of financial legislation.  

Until next time,


State Representative
94th Assembly District