Recent news has shown repeatedly in the past several days that the state’s economy is improving, offering further proof that Governor Walker’s reforms to get Wisconsin headed in the right direction are working.
Wisconsin’s unemployment rate recently fell to 4 percent, its lowest in 16 years. That followed news that an improving economy means more than $450 million in additional tax collections than earlier estimated – creating a stronger state budget as Governor Walker works to cut University of Wisconsin tuition, increase funding to K-12 education, reform welfare, and defeat efforts to increase the overall tax burden in Wisconsin.
In case you missed it, here are excerpts from the Associated Press’s coverage of Wisconsin’s improving economic and budget outlook. You can read the full report here.
MADISON, Wis. — Wisconsin’s state budget got a burst of good news Wednesday with news that tax collections will be nearly half a billion dollars more than estimated two months ago.
The improved outlook from the nonpartisan Legislative Fiscal Bureau will form the foundation of Gov. Scott Walker’s two-year spending plan and make it easier for the Republican to deliver on his promises as he looks ahead to running for a third term in 2018.
The rosier outlook, combined with less spending than previously anticipated, should be more than enough to wipe out a projected $693 million shortfall based on state agency spending requests.
“While this is certainly good news, our budget priorities will remain the same,” Walker said in a statement. “We will increase funding to public education at all levels, continue tax relief, and reward work.”
Walker has pledged to significantly increasing funding for K-12 schools, cut tuition for University of Wisconsin undergraduates and spend more money for worker training. He’s promised to do all that, and plug a nearly $1 billion transportation budget shortfall, without raising taxes.
Walker is set to release his budget early next month. The spending plan, which runs from July 1 through June 30, 2019, affects nearly every person’s life in the state. It sets how much gas costs, when hunting season begins and ends, who is eligible for state-funded health insurance through Medicaid, and how much income, sales and property should be taxed.