budget

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The GOP-controlled Joint Finance Committee voted Thursday to approve a roughly $321 million middle-class tax cut. It was the third attempt to find an income tax cut that both the GOP and Democratic Gov. Tony Evers can agree on. But Democrats on the committee were skeptical.

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The budget debate continues at the state capitol. Late Tuesday, the Joint Committee on Finance worked through most of the remaining items on its agenda. So far, the GOP-controlled committee has rejected most of Democratic Gov. Tony Evers initiatives.

Emily Files

University of Wisconsin System President Ray Cross is calling Republican lawmakers’ UW funding proposal "micromanaging" and a "missed opportunity."

Cross was in Milwaukee for a Board of Regents meeting this week. It was the first regents gathering since the Joint Committee on Finance surprised UW leaders with its spending plan. The budget-writing committee voted along party lines to advance a $58 million increase for UW schools over the next two years.  

Chuck Quirmbach

The state Legislature's budget committee has recommended shrinking the size of a proposed expansion of higher-speed internet service across Wisconsin. The Republican-controlled Joint Finance Committee also wants to block additional money to help a consumer group challenge residential rate cases brought by state utilities.

Both items were considered Thursday night, as part of  the state budget proposal for the Public Service Commission (PSC). 

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Wisconsin lawmakers have approved a plan to fund road repairs. The Republican-controlled Joint Finance committee Thursday night scrapped Gov. Tony Evers proposal for an 8-cent per gallon gas tax – and instead passed a measure to raise title and vehicle registration fees. The vote was 11-5, along party lines.

Emily Files

The new, union-backed Milwaukee School Board was responsive to employee concerns as it adjusted and approved the district’s $1.2 billion budget for the upcoming school year.

In a marathon meeting Thursday night, the board shifted dollars to provide increases for things like mental health staff, restorative practice leaders, and bilingual education.

Emily Files / WUWM

The Wisconsin Policy Forum’s annual Milwaukee Public Schools Budget Brief details the long-term financial insecurity facing MPS, even though Superintendent Keith Posley has constructed a $1.2 billion budget for the upcoming school year that protects classrooms from cuts.

"This was a difficult budget to size up," says Policy Forum President Rob Henken. "On the one hand, you do see what seems like an easing of fiscal pressures."

Emily Files

Republicans in the Wisconsin Legislature have rejected Democratic Gov. Tony Evers’ proposal to increase K-12 spending by $1.4 billion over the next two years.

Instead, the Joint Committee on Finance advanced a plan Tuesday that would boost school funding by about $500 million.

Republicans called it a "pro-kid budget." But Democrats and Milwaukee school officials lambasted the proposal, saying it falls far short.

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The battle between Democrats and Republicans over the next two-year state budget is in full swing.

Tuesday, members of the Joint Committee on Finance voted unanimously on several measures meant to improve water quality. They included Gov. Tony Evers' plan to borrow $13.5 million for the clean water program and $3.6 million for the safe drinking water loan program.

» Tony Evers Chats About Wisconsin's 'Year Of Clean Drinking Water'

Emily Files

The Milwaukee Public School District is beginning another difficult budget process.

New Superintendent Keith Posley is proposing a $1.2 billion spending plan for the 2019-2020 school year. It includes a modest boost in classroom funding, including 62 new teacher positions and 22 educational assistants.  

Screenshot / Wisconsin Public Television

Republicans on the Legislature's Joint Finance Committee stripped Democratic Gov. Tony Evers’ proposed Medicaid expansion Thursday. The committee voted against it 11-4, along party lines.

It was one of a number of measures the panel rejected, as members began acting on Evers' biennial spending plan. It only took about a half hour for GOP lawmakers to slice 131 of Evers’ fiscal and policy proposals — cutting $1.4 billion in spending.

Teran Powell

Wisconsinites from different backgrounds and professions are lining up to voice their concerns about the state’s budget. The Joint Finance Committee is holding four hearings throughout the state, giving the public a chance to give recommendations, support, or criticisms of the proposal.

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Gov. Tony Evers' two-year state budget proposal was released late in February. As expected, the proposal includes many of the things the governor campaigned on: increased funding for education, tax cuts for middle and low-income earners, as well as more funds for road repairs. There have been many objections from the Republican-led Legislature, and it remains unclear how much of Evers' budget will be passed.

Angelina Mosher Salazar

Doulas, mental health services, an expanded dental plan. Those are just some of the benefits that would come from accepting federal Medicaid dollars, according to Democratic Gov. Tony Evers' Medicaid Director Jim Jones.

He outlined the governor's goals Thursday at the Medical College of Wisconsin.

Chuck Quirmbach

In an attempt to convince Wisconsin legislators to fund 15 additional crime lab positions — costing $1.8 million in state funds over the next two years — Attorney General Josh Kaul is touring Wisconsin State Crime Lab locations. During a visit Thursday to the lab on the south side of Milwaukee, Kaul was also urging support for a $1.9 million pay plan, which he says is needed to address pay disparities and inequities with comparable crime laboratories in the region. 

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