Sup. Tony Staskunas
Press Release

County Supervisor Anthony Staskunas Opposes $60 Wheel Tax

"It is regressive, it's much higher than other wheel taxes around the state, and it is an extreme burden on those with multiple vehicles."

By - Oct 31st, 2016 04:49 pm

MILWAUKEE – County Supervisor Anthony Staskunas announced his opposition to County Executive Chris Abele‘s proposed $60 wheel tax, and released the following statement.

“I am opposed to the proposed $60 wheel tax. It is regressive, it’s much higher than other wheel taxes around the state, and it is an extreme burden on those with multiple vehicles.

“Because it is a flat tax a vehicle registration fee is regressive, meaning that it will be most difficult for Milwaukee County’s struggling workers and low income families to afford this tax.

“A $60 wheel tax for Milwaukee County is also disproportionately high when compared to other cities and counties across Wisconsin, and is out of balance with what other communities are asked to pay.

“For individuals and families who have multiple vehicles, they don’t just pay the wheel tax once – they have to pay for every vehicle they own, so this is a big hit for people who have three or four vehicles or motorcycles.”

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8 thoughts on “County Supervisor Anthony Staskunas Opposes $60 Wheel Tax”

  1. anonymous says:

    OK, what is your plan then? Cut services? Which ones? How about successfully pulling a coalition together to get Madison to raise our sales tax in the County so we can better fund transit, public safety and arts and culture. This way those who come to Milwaukee County to recreate, shop, experience entertainment are helping to support those things. You mention how a $60 wheel tax is out of proportion for the rest of the state. Well our sales tax is out of proportion to our neighbors, 7.7% in Minneapolis and almost 10% in Illinois AND THEY ARE LEADING US IN ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT! Something has to give, so if you cannot raise the wheel tax or raise the sales tax from 5.6% in our state’s most important county, then what Supervisor?

  2. Anonymous says:

    The taxpayer already subsidizes county bus riders. We already pay an above average state gasoline tax.
    Why should auto drivers, who pay registration fees and gas taxes, maintenance and insurance, parking lot fees
    and parking metes,increase their subsidy to bus riders?
    Also, the property tax rates we pay are much higher than Minneapolis.
    Illinois has the lowest bond rating in the nation.

  3. Jason says:

    It is pretty simple an entitlement was created to give free public access to all bus riders over the age of 65. So in simple terms over 20 percent of all Milwaukee county citizens can now ride the bus for free. County board Chairman Theo Lipscum and his group of County midgets did not have a pile of County cash to provide free rides, in fact that pile cash has been given away to public servants with million dollar up front pensions that have crippled services. Lipscum and company recognized that citizens were not riding public transportation, so they had to find away to encourage citizens to ride. With no money coming from a larger amount of riders a deficit of $4 million dollars a year (2015…2016 ..2017 and so forth) has formed. Making the matters financially worse is the board wants all rider that are deemed under federal standards as poor to ride the bus for free as well. So your top three groups of bus riders will be free rides for old people who in many cases have the financial resources to pay for transportation, poor and disabled will ride for free and college students who receive a free bus pass. Who is left the suckers? The person that happily provides full bus fare and who has to fend off the smells of stale cigarettes and beer and of course the county tax payer who gets hosed again by the County board. A board that is suppose to be good stewards of the tax coffers and instead sides with the county workers, and imagines ways to fleece the working men and women of their hard earned gains.

  4. Jeff McDonald says:

    You flatly state a wheel tax is regressive. That’s your starting premise. Please do your homework. You will find that in the context of funding public transportation such a tax is not regressive. You’re entitled to your own opinions but not your own facts.

  5. Bruce Thompson says:

    I agree that those opposing the wheel tax should propose an alternative.

  6. Barbara Richards says:

    My maternal Grandfather is quoted as saying that “the automobile will be the ruination of America” We are seeing that play out. We are addicted to our convenience and it is killing our children and their planet. I do not pity those with multiple vehicles- well, I do have three- three bicycles: summer, winter, and cargo; and I love bikes on the bus. And though a “senior” and retired I do not use the Go Pass as my income can handle the senior case M Card. Take the bus and leave the driving to MCTS!

    My aunt could board a train in Gary, Indiana in the 1940’s and visit her parents in Mt Vernon, IA over a weekend and be back Sunday night for her teaching job in the then great public schools of Gary, rested and ready.

    Mass transit in the good ole USA has a long way to go. We need to get there sooner rather than later.

  7. M says:

    Corrupt pension schemes and Abele’s $4-million annual giveaway for the Bucks Arena (plus the $9-million land giveaway to Bucks owners) have further crippled the county budget. But regardless of the causes, it’s reached a crisis.

    One proposed alternative is a sales tax, but Abele won’t pitch it because the GOP Legislature may not sign it. Is that realism or defeatism? Abele could also push state legislators to allow an indexed wheel tax as other states do. Both are needed before quality-of-life completely tanks here. And business leaders need to start thinking about the big picture or they’ll be in big trouble too.

    We could look to the Twin Cities for how to support all forms of transportation, including mass transit, bicycling and pedestrian, which has helped promote their exceptional quality of life and economic prosperity.

    They focus on addressing issues regionally, not urban vs. suburban. Milwaukee County’s car-centric culture is on a death spiral without some change in perspective.

  8. Dave Reid says:

    “M” I noticed you left out the County Board’s expensive Go Pass? The sales tax is extremely unlikely to get support from the legislature. It’s good idea, but it isn’t going anywhere right anytime soon.

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