MADISON- In an attempt to solve the one-party gridlock facing the state Republican party, State Senate Majority Leader Scott Fitzgerald has revealed a new budget plan. The budget has been overdue for over two weeks now, and this new proposal is designed to jump-start budget negotiations which have been stalling lately.
Fitzgerald’s plan calls for $700 million in borrowing for transportation projects. Assembly Republicans have resisted calls for new borrowing, arguing that the transportation budget should be kept level or that fees should be raised to pay for transportation. Fitzgerald and Governor Walker both hope that this new proposal will help to bring the Assembly into the fold, so that a bill can finally be passed.
Molly Beck and Mark Sommerhauser at the Wisconsin State Journal report:
State Senate Republicans have announced a plan to end the 18-day standoff over the state’s overdue budget, but it’s not clear if the proposal will satisfy Assembly Republicans, who have starkly different views on how to pay for roads.
The 2017-19 state spending plan released Tuesday provides the most detailed look at where Senate Republicans stand on unresolved areas of the budget, such as taxes and funding for schools, roads and bridges.
The plan would have the state take on more than $700 million in new borrowing to fund road and bridge projects. It would repeal the state’s prevailing, or minimum, wage requirement for workers on public construction projects.
The plan would make more families eligible for the private school voucher program outside Milwaukee and Racine. It proposes repealing the state personal property tax but abandons Gov. Scott Walker’s plan for an income tax cut.
Senate Majority Leader Scott Fitzgerald, R-Juneau, said the proposal puts the onus back on Assembly Republicans in budget talks. Fitzgerald, Walker and Assembly Speaker Robin Vos, R-Rochester, are set to meet Wednesday.
While Tuesday’s proposal is intended to restart budget discussions, Fitzgerald acknowledged, even as he unveiled it, that he’s not sure if the Senate could pass the measure as-is.
Read more at the Wisconsin State Journal.