March 8, 2019
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Explaining the Budget Process

Being a new member on the Joint Committee on Finance means that I have a direct hand in shaping the upcoming state budget. As budget negotiations begin I thought I'd share with you a brief summary of the budget process.

Last week the governor started the budget process when he introduced his budget proposal to a joint session of the Legislature. The Executive Budget is a 1000-page document that outlines what he hopes to accomplish in the upcoming biennium. I gave my thoughts on the governor's proposal in last week's E-Update. 

After the governor announces his intentions, the nonpartisan Legislative Fiscal Bureau works diligently to summarize the policies the governor proposed. This summary will be provided to the legislature in the beginning of April and will consist of a true analysis of the costs and fiscal impacts that come with the governor's proposals.

Beginning in April, my Joint Finance Committee (JFC) colleagues and I will begin agency hearings. During these hearings, the leaders of the different agencies throughout the state come in front of the JFC and explain why their agency requests should be adopted in the final budget bill.

Following the agency hearings, we will travel around the state to host a series of public hearings that give citizens a chance to discuss issues you feel are most important to address in the budget.

Over the next couple of weeks following the public hearings, the committee will hold executive sessions to adopt recommendations brought before the committee. Motions that get approved by JFC will then be put into the version of the budget bill that gets voted on by the entire Legislature.

Finally, the Legislature sends the bill to the governor, who has broad power over the fate of the legislation. Governor Evers has the most powerful veto powers in the nation and can take multiple actions on the bill including: signing the bill as is, vetoing the entire bill, or using his power of a "partial veto" to strike down words or sentences in the bill to change the meaning of the proposed legislation.

Ideally the entire process is done by June 30th and the budget takes effect on July 1st with the start of the new fiscal year. Should the process get drawn out longer, state spending continues at current levels.

I hope that you find this summary informative and that you continue to follow along with the process as it unfolds. As always, I encourage you to follow my updates on social media or contact my office directly with your questions. I hope you have a great weekend!

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The Speaker's Task Force on Suicide Prevention

Speaker Vos (R-Rochester) announced the creation of the Speaker’s Task Force on Suicide Prevention chaired by Rep. Ballweg (R-Markesan).

This task force will be working with experts, advocates and other stakeholders to evaluate current resources dedicated to suicide prevention and find ways to better allocate these resources and also examine how to better assist at-risk individuals such as farmers and youth.

State health officials report more than 700 Wisconsinites die by suicide every year.

I look forward to seeing what recommendations the task force puts before the Legislature to address this important issue.

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A Visit from Big Brothers and Big Sisters of Sheboygan Co.

Members from Big Brothers and Big Sisters of Sheboygan County visited the Capitol for the organization's lobby day. We had a very productive meeting on the important work that the group does for Sheboygan County.

Created in 1965, Big Brothers and Big Sisters of Sheboygan County was the first Big Brothers of America in Wisconsin and has served nearly 20,000 children. Thank you for visiting!


Daylight Saving Time

Don't forget to "spring" your clocks forward an hour on Sunday.

Fun Fact: The federal government first introduced daylight-saving time in 1918 to conserve fuel for the war effort during World War I. 

Office of Rep. Terry Katsma
State Capitol, Room 306 East
PO Box 8952
Madison, WI 53708

Toll-Free (888) 529-0026 or (608) 266-0656  |