July 21, 2017

With a budget that is now three weeks overdue, Gov. Walker and some Assembly Republicans are backing a plan to delay road repairs and construction projects while shifting $200 million in income taxes back onto working families. The proposal would continue to hold school general aid below 2010-11 levels and leave the state with a funding deficit going into 2019.  

Many remain skeptical of this proposal in light of the state’s shaky financial situation and lagging economic performance. Democrats on the budget-writing Joint Finance Committee have continued to push their plan which would restore school funding and lower property taxes in order to break the budget stalemate. Without a state budget in place, school boards will face uncertainty and construction delays will result in job layoffs.

Follow Along!

Follow the Democratic members of the Joint Finance Committee on Facebook, Twitter and YouTube as they finish up the budget:

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Budget Update

According to the National Conference of State Legislatures, Wisconsin is now one of only three states in the U.S. with a late budget.


The budget-writing Joint Finance Committee hasn’t met publicly for one month as Republican infighting derailed the committee process and caused the state to miss its July 1st budget deadline. As the budget delay continues, schools and communities will face greater uncertainty over their local budgets and important construction projects.

You can view all of the previous motions and votes on the state budget by visiting the Legislative Democrats website here:  



There is no executive session scheduled at this time. The committee must still address budget provisions related to the following agencies:

What Democrats Are Saying
Democratic Proposals

LRB-3877 Funding for CWD Research and Management (Reps. Shankland, Milroy, Wachs) would provide funding to combat the spread of Chronic Wasting Disease (CWD) to preserve Wisconsin’s deer population.


LRB-3949 Minority Mental Health Month (Rep. Crowley and Sen. Johnson) Resolution proclaiming July 2017 as Minority Mental Health month.


Juvenile Justice Bill of Rights Act (Reps. Young, Crowley and Sen. Taylor) is a package of bills addressing juvenile justice.

  • LRB-3862 Juvenile Solitary Confinement Ban– This bill prohibits the practice of solitary confinement for juveniles in correctional facilities including jails, prisons, and secured residential care centers.
  • LRB-3863 Transfer Juvenile Corrections to DCFPer LRB Analysis: This bill transfers from the Department of Corrections to the Department of Children and Families the administration of all juvenile correctional services currently administered by DOC.  
  • LRB-3861 Lincoln Hills Medication Bill– This bill specifies that only trained medical personnel may administer or distribute medication to juveniles. Medical personnel must have a credential of licensed practical nurse or greater to qualify.
  • LRB-3919 Licensed Juvenile Facilities – This bill would allow Milwaukee County to license a hybrid Type 1 and Type 2 correctional facility within Milwaukee County. As a result, less youth will be exposed to excessive security procedures that desensitize our children to incarceration.

LRB-3971 Greenhouse Gas Emission (Sen. Larson and Reps. Bowen and Billings) would require Wisconsin to comply with greenhouse gas emission reduction targets under the Paris climate agreement.

This Week in the Senate

Senate Session

The Senate did not conduct a floor period this week. The next floor session will take place when the Senate takes up the Budget. The entire floor session calendar can be found here

Senate Committees

There were no committee meetings held this week. Although there are numerous bills ready for a hearing, Republican legislators that set the committee schedule refuse to take up common-sense reforms offered by both Democrats and Republicans.

This Week in the Assembly

Assembly Session

The Assembly was not scheduled for a floor period this week. The scheduled floor periods for the session are available here.

Assembly Committees

Assembly Committee on Science and Technology

The committee held a public hearing on Assembly Bill 206 which would prohibit UW employees from performing or assisting in performing an abortion while an employee of the UW system and could worsen the OB-GYN shortage.

Assembly Committee on Natural Resources and Sporting Heritage                  

The committee held a public hearing on Assembly Bill 399 relating to zoning ordinances in the Lower St. Croix river-way and Assembly Bill 411 which would prohibit a DNR warden from entering private land to enforce a DNR ordinance unless they have probable cause. 

Next Week in the Legislature

Senate Committees

Senate Committee on Workforce Development, Military Affairs and Senior Issues. The committee will tour the Department of Military Affairs.

Assembly Committees

Assembly Committee on Health
The committee will hold a Public Hearing on Assembly Bill 371, Assembly Bill 318 and Assembly Bill 305.

Assembly Speaker's Task Force on Foster Care 

The committee will hold and informational hearing with testimony from the Department of Children and Families, The Coalition for Children Youth and Families, Wisconsin Counties Association, Child Abuse and Neglect Prevention Board, Children’s Hospital of Wisconsin and Lutheran Social Services.


 To view updated committee notices, visit the legislative website and click on Committee Schedule: Wisconsin State Legislature.

 The State Capitol Update is provided by the Senate and Assembly Democratic Caucuses. For additional information, please send an email to WisconsinDemocrats@legis.wi.gov or call toll free: 1.800.385.3385.