Capitol Update

Helpful Wisconsin Links

Visiting Madison?
I would be happy to arrange a capitol tour for you.  Call my office at (608) 266-0703 for more info.
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Improving the Financial Situation in Wisconsin
The State of Wisconsin has an annual audit prepared in conformity with generally accepted accounting principles (GAAP). As a CPA, I am interested in the financial condition of our state. The GAAP basis audit accurately portrays the financial condition of the state.

The reason that there is a GAAP deficit in this state is that the state has historically “balanced” its books by using cash-basis budgeting. Over the years, it has led to all kinds of creative techniques to balance these books. Many of these techniques have been well publicized and include the sale of the tobacco settlement, raids of the Transportation Fund and the Patient Compensation Fund, withholding of payments to Minnesota, and delaying of state aids to school districts.

The path that we were on was unsustainable. By the end of fiscal year 2010, the general fund deficit had grown to nearly $3 billion! People were taking notice of these budgeting gimmicks. The bond rating agencies in New York were concerned about these deficits and it had a negative impact on our bond rating

Tremendous progress has been made in the last three years. In 2010, the Wisconsin GAAP deficit stood at over $2.9 billion and today the GAAP deficit has decreased 52% to $1.4 billion. The decrease represents the fact that Wisconsin has made significant progress in achieving solvency and more honest accounting practices.

There is still more work to be done. I believe the only permanent solution is to have the voters in Wisconsin approve an amendment to the state constitution that will require future legislatures and governors to budget on the basis of generally accepted accounting principles.

I have again introduced legislation creating a constitutional amendment that would require the state to budget the same way that businesses, school districts, counties, townships, cities, and villages budget. The state should live by the same rules as our constituents. As a constitutional amendment, Senate Joint Resolution 55 and Assembly Joint Resolution 66 would need passage by two consecutive sessions of the State Legislature and require the approval of voters statewide before becoming law.



For more information and to connect with me, visit my website http://legis.wisconsin.gov/senate/17/marklein and not hesitate to call 800-978-8008 if you have input, ideas or need assistance with any state-related matters.


Senator Marklein’s 2015 Fall Legislative Survey
If you haven’t already, please take my 2015 Fall Legislative Survey. Below you will find a link to a 10 question survey seeking your thoughts on a number of relevant legislative issues and concepts that we will be discussing in the coming months.

This survey is available online at http://legis.wisconsin.gov/senate/17/marklein or please feel free to print out a copy from the link below and return it to me at PO Box 7882, Madison, WI 53703 or via fax at 608-282-3557. Please submit your survey by October 30, 2015.

For a PDF version of the survey, click here.

2015-16 Blue Books
The 2015-16 Blue Books have arrived at the Capitol! If you would like one, please let me know, I would be happy to make sure you receive a blue book.


In the District


Listening Sessions on Friday, October 9
On Friday, October 9, I will be having three listening sessions in Dodgeville, Argyle and Monroe with Representative Todd Novak. I hope that you will be able to join me at one of these listening sessions! I look forward to the opportunity to receive your thoughts, ideas and concerns. Here is the schedule for Friday:

Friday, October 9, 2015

9-10 a.m. Dodgeville – Dodgeville City Hall, 100 E Fountain Street, Dodgeville

11:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m. Argyle – Argyle Village Hall, 401 E. Milwaukee Street, Argyle

2-3 p.m. Monroe – Monroe City Hall, 1110 18th Ave., Monroe

I’ve enjoyed being able to connect with you at my listening sessions this fall!


*Senator Howard Marklein at his listening session in Lancaster on September 28, 2015


Congratulations, Dave Gough!

I had the opportunity to attend the Darlington American Legion Post 214 open house that was honoring Dave Gough. Dave was recently installed as National Vice Commander for the American Legion, the second highest elected position in the country! What an incredible achievement! I was honored to present a plaque of recognition to Dave for all of his accomplishments! 


*Senator Marklein presenting a plaque of recognition to Dave Gough


Helpful Information


Southwest Wisconsin Year to Date Automobile Sales for August
Every month, the Wisconsin Automobile & Truck Dealers Association releases the monthly sales trends for counties around the state. I thought it would be interesting to show you the sales of cars and trucks within the 17th Senate District for the first eight months of this year compared to last year. As you can see from the data, truck sales account for majority of the automobile sales in the district!

County Vehicle August YTD 2014 August YTD 2015 % Change
Grant Car 465 384 -17.42%
  Truck 1,074 1,302 21.23%
  TOTAL 1,539 1,686 9.55%
Green Car 343 291 -15.16%
  Truck 636 753 18.40%
  TOTAL 979 1,044 6.64%
Iowa Car 202 178 -11.88%
  Truck 469 534 13.86%
  TOTAL 671 712 6.11%
Juneau Car 183 181 -1.09%
  Truck 384 436 13.54%
  TOTAL 567 617 8.82%
Lafayette Car 116 104 -10.34%
  Truck 296 406 37.16%
  TOTAL 412 510 23.79%
Monroe Car 363 266 -26.72%
  Truck 725 783 8.00%
  TOTAL 1,088 1,049 -3.58%
Richland Car 117 104 -11.11%
  Truck 282 308 9.22%
  TOTAL 399 412 3.26%
Sauk Car 511 444 -13.11%
  Truck 1,083 1,288 18.93%
  TOTAL 1,549 1,732 8.66%
Vernon Car 189 157 -16.93%
  Truck 411 547 33.09%
  TOTAL 600 704 17.33%
Regional TOTAL Car 2,489 2,109 -15.27%
  Truck 5,360 6,357 18.60%
  TOTAL 7,849 8,466 7.86%


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State Capitol - Room 8 South - Post Office Box 7882 - Madison, Wisconsin 53707 - Phone: (608) 266-0703