State Senator Van Wanggaard's eNewsletter 2015
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Legislature Passes State Budget


After months of input and deliberation, the Wisconsin State Budget was approved by the legislature this week. I am proud to say the budget is not only balanced, but nearly 100% of new spending is going toward education and health care. The budget protects taxpayers while:

-Investing nearly $300 million for public K-12 education over the next two years
-Increasing educational options for limited-income families
-Ensures property taxes remain frozen or decrease for the fifth year in a row
-Providing $21 million in tax relief for lower and middle class married individuals by increasing the deduction for married couples
-Preserving IRIS and SeniorCare for Wisconsin’s disabled and elderly
-Includes NO income or sales tax increase

In addition to ensuring these important measures were included, there was one measure that I felt it was critical to remove. It came to my attention late last week that some inappropriate changes to Wisconsin’s open records law had been added to the budget. I did not author the changes, and I did not, and would not, vote for the changes that were proposed. After I became aware of the changes I voiced strong opposition and requested that the measure be entirely removed. I am glad that due to citizen involvement and the vocal concern from myself and other legislators, the changes to the open records law were completely removed from the state budget.

Although no state budget is perfect, I am proud to have voted to pass a budget that protects the vulnerable, strengthens education and is fiscally responsible.  I know there are families across the 21st Senate District who work hard to keep a balanced budget, and you deserve to have a government who does the same. It is not enough to simply meet the needs of Wisconsin residents- we must also make tough choices to ensure taxpayers are protected. The process was long, but in the end, my colleagues and I presented a budget that increases education funding, preserves IRIS and SeniorCare and increases educational options for families with limited means all while maintaining the lowest bonding level in years.

The budget was passed by the Assembly early Thursday morning and now goes to the Governor for line-item vetoes and his signature. Click here for a breakdown of state spending in each area.

Taxpayers Win with Rollback of Prevailing Wage

Taxpayers won a major victory this week when the Senate approved a significant rollback of the prevailing wage law.

My colleagues and I stood up for taxpayers and small businesses on Tuesday by voting to repeal the prevailing wage law for all local government projects, including those done by municipalities, school districts and technical colleges. We also streamlined the system at the state level by federalizing state prevailing wages, which will eliminate duplicative paperwork, and shrink government bureaucracy.

My primary job as your senator is to be a good steward of taxpayer dollars. The prevailing wage law can artificially inflate project costs, and those high costs get passed on to the hardworking men and women in Wisconsin. In fact, one 
nonpartisan study estimates that prevailing wage repeal will save taxpayers almost $300 million. This repeal will help save taxpayers' money, and makes the bidding process fairer for small businesses. 

In the Capitol

On Wednesday, July 1, I was proud to attend the bill signing of Assembly Bill 24, which I authored to help lower interest rates for new homeowners and help local banks.
Connect with Van:


State Senator Van
21st Senate District 

Wisconsin State Capitol 
P.O. Box 7882
Madison, Wisconsin 53707
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Local Events

Reefpoint Marina
July 11 - 19

Bristol Progress Days
Hanson Park
July 10 - 12

Secret Garden Walk
July 11, 9:00 am - 3:00 pm

Second Saturday
Downtown Kenosha
July 11

Uke's Harley-Davidson
Open House
Town of Somers
July 11


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Our mailing address is:

Senator Van Wanggaard
P.O. Box 7882
Room 319 South
Madison, WI 53707

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