LFB Projects Wisconsin Budget Hole
by Jackie Johnson
February 9, 2012
Wisconsin is facing a $143 million shortfall for this biennium, according to an annual analysis released Thursday by the Legislative Fiscal Bureau — that’s almost $216 million below the nearly $73 million surplus that was projected in October.
Representative Robin Vos (R-Rochester) blames the “slower than anticipated” national recovery from the Great Recession. “It’s not a surprise when we look at what’s happening all around the country. Wisconsin is one of 29 states that show that the slowdown in the national economy is having an impact on our state budget.”
The Fiscal Bureau says the downward fiscal outlook is mostly due to a $273 million drop in projected tax revenues. The new estimate could trigger the need for a budget repair bill, but Vos, who’s on the legislative budget writing committee, disagrees. He says Wisconsin will end the first year of the two-year budget with a surplus. It’s the second year that will have to be reevaluated. “Hopefully we will not have to make cuts, but if the choice is between raising taxes and cutting, you know, the bureaucracy, we’ll of course choose to cut the bureaucracy in a way that doesn’t impact the public.”
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