State Budget Update


May 22, 2015

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Well, they did it again. The Joint Finance Committee went late last night, wrapping up their debate around 10 pm after starting at 4 pm. There was a lot of discussion about the Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation (WEDC) but the biggest news from last night was that the JFC voted to save SeniorCare.

Because the last e-update was on the long side, I’m keeping this one short and sweet. Here is what was decided last night:




  • The JFC voted to remove the Governor from the board of the agency in the wake of a recent audit and investigation that showed that WEDC made questionable loans and did not follow state law or its own policies.

  • The Governor also proposed removing the four state legislators from the board
    The JFC vetoed this measure, leaving legislative oversight in place.

  • The Governor’s budget proposal would have combined WEDC with the Wisconsin Housing and Economic Development Authority (WHEDA). After the audit, the Governor dropped this provision.

  • The JFC did not approve the merger as requested.


  • The Governor proposed cutting SeniorCare by over 40% and requiring that participants enroll in Medicare Part D, raising prescription drug costs for 87,000 people.

  • The JFC voted to remove the proposal all together, leaving SeniorCare “as is.”



BadgerCare Plus

  • The Governor proposed asking for a federal waiver to charge premiums for BadgerCare Plus, also known as Medicaid. Higher premiums would be charged for those with unspecified risky behavior.

  • The JFC approved this proposal.

Educational Approval Board


  • The Governor’s budget would have eliminated the Educational Approval Board which regulates private, for-profit schools.

  • The JFC voted to leave the board intact.


The JFC is expected to be back in again next week where they hope to wrap up the budget before sending it to the Senate and Assembly.





State Representative

94th Assembly District



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