Evers Wants Voucher Costs on Tax Bills
New governor’s budget will include showing cost of private school vouchers on property tax bills.
Democratic Gov.-elect Tony Evers said Wednesday that he wants Wisconsin property tax bills to show how much people are paying to support private voucher schools.
The plan is one of many Evers will introduce as part of his first state budget, which will be the first proposed by a Democratic governor in Wisconsin in eight years.
Given the recent history of divided government and the recent push by Republicans to restrict Evers’ powers, he’ll likely find himself at odds with legislators on a wide array of issues, from taxes, to schools and roads.
While that could also carry over to Evers’ voucher schools plan, he said it would start a “good conversation” around education funding in Wisconsin.
“At some point in time as a state, we have to figure out whether we can afford two or three separate allocations of public schools,” Evers said in an interview Wednesday. “People in Wisconsin don’t know how much school districts are losing because of vouchers and how much is being deducted from their aid. They need to know that so that we can as a state have a good discussion about what’s involved with the voucher program.”
Democrats proposed a similar bill in 2017 but it died in the Legislature.
Evers said his budget would include the income tax cut he proposed toward the end of his race for governor.
Evers’ plan would cut income taxes by 10 percent for people who earn up to $100,000 and families that earn up to $150,000, a move his campaign estimated would cost state government about $340 million.
“I’m appreciative of Sen. Fitzgerald’s interest in our plan, but he only took only half of our plan,” Evers said. “We believe that the manufacturers and agricultural tax credits are too lucrative.”
Evers would not characterize his tax plan as an “either or” proposal he’d reject if it didn’t include both the tax cut and the scaled back tax credit.
“No, I’m just saying we have to find a way to pay for it,” Evers said.
Federal Medicaid Money
Evers said his budget would demonstrate a clear break from Gov. Scott Walker‘s administration in the way that it funds BadgerCare, specifically by expanding it to receive increased federal funding.
“When it comes to taking the Medicaid money, that will be part of the budget,” Evers said. “That’s what we promised.”
The increased Medicaid funding was first made possible by the federal Affordable Care Act. Walker has rejected it each year, arguing it could leave the state in a bind should the ACA and its federal guarantees go away.
The decision has resulted in a net loss to the state of more than $1 billion in federal funding, according to the Legislature’s nonpartisan budget office. The budget office also found expanding BadgerCare coverage to people who earn up to 133 percent of the poverty level would generate roughly $200 million in increased federal funding each year.
Evers said his budget would also have “at least the beginning of a solid transportation policy” in Wisconsin, though he would not say what it will include.
Evers said Craig Thompson, his transportation secretary, would help come up with ideas for how to pay for roads. Thompson was previously the director of the Wisconsin Transportation Development Association, a group that represents road-builders and road-building unions among others.
“He’s going to bring people together and provide me recommendations for me to consider,” Evers said.
Thompson’s nomination has come under fire from some Republicans who say his affiliation with road builders should disqualify him from the position. The criticism is noteworthy because the state Senate, led by Republicans, will need to confirm Thompson’s nomination.
Evers said he did not think Thompson’s confirmation was in doubt.
“I don’t believe so,” Evers said. “He knows the Legislature. He knows Republicans. He knows Democrats. He’s been in the game a long time.”
Evers said his budget would be built around public education funding, and would fulfill many of the ideas he’d proposed over his nearly nine years leading the state Department of Public Instruction.
That includes a $600 million increase in special education funding and $1.4 billion total in school spending.
“Everything I talked about during the campaign will be in my budget,” Evers said.
Evers will be sworn in Monday. He’ll likely introduce his first state budget in February.
Listen to the WPR report here.
Evers Wants Property Tax Bills To Show Cost Of Voucher Schools was originally published by Wisconsin Public Radio.
More about the 2019-2021 Wisconsin Budget
- Republicans Refuse to Allow Votes on Budget Proposals to Help People Vote - One Wisconsin Now - May 14th, 2019
- Rep. Robyn Vining Responds to GOP Rejection of Medicaid Expansion - State Rep. Robyn Vining - May 9th, 2019
- Gov. Evers’ Statement on Joint Finance Committee Action - Gov. Tony Evers - May 9th, 2019
- Leader Fitzgerald Applauds Joint Finance Committee Eliminating Over $1 Billion in Gov. Evers’ Tax Hikes - Senate Majority Leader Scott Fitzgerald - May 9th, 2019
- Scores of People Attend State Budget Hearing - Bridgit Bowden - Apr 6th, 2019
- Legislators Resist Many Evers Proposals - Laurel White - Apr 5th, 2019
- Republicans Call for Reset of Evers’ Budget - Shawn Johnson and Laurel White - Apr 4th, 2019
- Evers Budgets $78 Million for High Speed Internet - Danielle Kaeding - Mar 14th, 2019
- Evers Wants $2.5 Billion Capital Budget - Shawn Johnson - Mar 11th, 2019
- The Medical College of Wisconsin Applauds Governor Evers Commitment to Cancer Research - Medical College of Wisconsin - Mar 8th, 2019
- Evers Budget Overlooks Convention Center - Corri Hess - Mar 8th, 2019
- School Leaders Back Evers Funding Plan - John Davis - Mar 7th, 2019
- WILL Budget Explainer: The Administrative State - Wisconsin Institute for Law & Liberty - Mar 7th, 2019
- Governor Evers Makes Historic Investments in Health Care Coverage and Access - Wisconsin Department of Health Services - Mar 6th, 2019
- Evers’ Budget Allows Immigrants In-State Tuition - Phoebe Petrovic - Mar 6th, 2019
- Murphy’s Law: Who Will Win State Budget Battle? - Bruce Murphy - Mar 5th, 2019
- The State of Politics: Governor’s Veto Power Looms Large - Steven Walters - Mar 4th, 2019
- Rural and Urban School Districts Express Support for Governor Evers’ Budget - Milwaukee Public Schools - Mar 1st, 2019
- Governor Evers Budget Prioritizes Real People Living Real Lives - Wisconsin Alliance for Women’s Health - Mar 1st, 2019
- Coalition for More Responsible Transportation Members Applaud Gov. Evers’ Proposed Transportation Budget - Coalition for More Responsible Transportation - Mar 1st, 2019
- Senate Majority Leader Scott Fitzgerald Responds to Governor Evers’ Budget Address - Senate Majority Leader Scott Fitzgerald - Feb 28th, 2019
- Rep. Considine Statement on Governor’s Budget - State Rep. Dave Considine - Feb 28th, 2019
- Senator Craig Responds to Governor Evers’ Budget Address - State Sen. David Craig - Feb 28th, 2019
- Rep. Shankland Commends Governor Evers on The People’s Budget - State Rep. Katrina Shankland - Feb 28th, 2019
- Rep. Robyn Vining Cheers The People’s Budget - State Rep. Robyn Vining - Feb 28th, 2019
- Milwaukee Area Labor Council Reaction State Budget - Milwaukee Area Labor Council - Feb 28th, 2019
- Statement from Rep. Brostoff in Support of Gov. Evers’ Redistricting Plan - State Rep. Jonathan Brostoff - Feb 28th, 2019
- The People’s Budget is a Win for Wisconsin - State Sen. Jennifer Shilling - Feb 28th, 2019
- Rep. Mark Spreitzer Applauds Gov. Evers’s Budget Address - State Rep. Mark Spreitzer - Feb 28th, 2019
- Gov. Tony Evers’ Budget Plan: Progress on Solutions for Student Loan Borrowers and Protections for Wisconsin Voter Rights - One Wisconsin Now - Feb 28th, 2019
- Governor Evers Gives 2019-21 Biennial Budget Address - Gov. Tony Evers - Feb 28th, 2019
- MacIver Responds To Reporters Being Barred From Evers Budget Briefing - MacIver Institute - Feb 28th, 2019
- AFP-WI: Evers Education Budget Doesn’t Prioritize Student Success - AFP Wisconsin - Feb 28th, 2019
- Evers’ Budget Will Include Nonpartisan Redistricting Process - Shawn Johnson - Feb 27th, 2019
- Representative Subeck Applauds Governor Evers’ Plan to Ensure Fair Election Maps - State Rep. Lisa Subeck - Feb 26th, 2019
- Rep. Robyn Vining Embraces Gov. Evers’ Inclusion of Redistricting in Budget - State Rep. Robyn Vining - Feb 26th, 2019
- Gov. Evers Announces Tribal Initiatives in State Budget - Gov. Tony Evers - Feb 26th, 2019
- Governor Evers’ Budget Targets School Choice: What You Need to Know - Wisconsin Institute for Law & Liberty - Feb 25th, 2019
- The State of Politics: 10 Issues to Watch in Evers Budget - Steven Walters - Feb 25th, 2019
- Evers Signals Gas Tax In His Budget - Danielle Kaeding - Feb 13th, 2019
- Evers Budget Will ‘Put Kids First’ - Shawn Johnson - Jan 30th, 2019
- Evers Wants Voucher Costs on Tax Bills - Shawn Johnson - Jan 3rd, 2019