Joint Finance Begins Budget Writing Today

5/1/17 – The Legislature’s Joint Finance Committee will start writing its own version of the next state budget Monday afternoon. The panel will take about two months to propose spending and revenue levels to the full Legislature, and the most controversial items are normally among the last to come up. That means it will probably be a while before the 12 Republican and four Democratic finance members act on Governor Scott Walker’s plan to close a one-billion-dollar shortfall in road funding without raising taxes — increase public K-12 school aid by 650-million dollars the next two years — and cut U-W tuition by five percent next year after five straight years of freezes. Also, a plan to have the government provide its own health insurance to state employees has been questioned by both finance chairs, even though Walker says it would save 60-million dollars. Right now, 17 private H-M-Os cover state workers.