Gov. Evers Announces Plan Using Surplus Funds to Address Rising Costs, Barriers to Employment in Wisconsin
Governor’s plan provides $150 surplus refund to every Wisconsin resident, targeted relief for childcare and caregiver costs, and investments in education while holding the line on property taxes
MADISON — Gov. Tony Evers today unveiled his plan to use a portion of the recently announced state revenue surplus funds to address rising costs facing Wisconsin families while defraying costs for caregiving and childcare that present barriers to employment. This w
In response to the new projections, and in contrast to Legislative Republicans who indicated they have no immediate plans to use the windfall prior to the next biennial budget that will likely not be passed until summer 2023, Gov. Evers emphasized that Wisconsinites cannot wait for over a year to be provided relief from rising costs at the checkout line and gas pumps. The governor’s plan announced today invests nearly $1.7 billion of the projected revenue surplus to provide a $150 surplus refund to every Wisconsin resident, provide $131.8 million in targeted tax relief to caregivers and families, and invest almost $750 million in education, while holding the line on property taxes.
Gov. Evers’ plan announced today proposes sending every Wisconsin resident $150 to help defray rising costs Wisconsin families are experiencing and as businesses face challenges getting supplies and resources. Every Wisconsinite will be able to receive the full surplus refund, including for each of their dependents. A family of four, for example, would receive $600 under the governor’s proposal. Most Wisconsinites would have to take no action to receive the refund, which would be distributed through information provided by an individual on their tax returns.
The announcement today builds upon Gov. Evers’ efforts announced
Addressing Barriers to Filling Jobs
In addition to measures aimed at addressing rising costs, Gov. Evers’ plan also includes additional provisions aimed at reducing the costs for childcare and caregiving—key proposals to help support Wisconsin’s workforce and address barriers to employment. Gov. Evers’ plan proposes expanding the newly created Child and Dependent Care Credit from 50 percent of the federal credit to 100 percent. This will provide nearly $30 million in tax relief to 107,000 Wisconsinites who claim the federal credit, or about $274 per filer. Most people who are eligible for the credit could receive up to $600 if they are claiming it for one qualifying individual’s expenses or $1200 for two or more qualifying individuals’ expenses. Additionally, Gov. Evers is proposing to create an income tax credit for qualified expenses incurred by a family caregiver. A majority of Wisconsinites are in income ranges to be eligible for the credit, and most filers will receive up to $500, while married-separate filers will receive up to $250. The governor’s plan would provide an estimated more than $100 million in tax relief to Wisconsinites who are experiencing increased costs and expenses caring for a family member. The governor originally proposed creating the Caregiver Tax Credit in his 2021-23 biennial budget, but the move was rejected by Republicans in the Legislature.
Investing in What’s Best for Our Kids
- Allocate $815.7 million toward a surplus refund of $150 for each Wisconsin resident.
- Create a nonrefundable caregiver tax credit for qualified expenses incurred by a family caregiver to assist a qualified family member.
- Increase the newly created Wisconsin nonrefundable credit match on the Child and Dependent Care Credit from 50 percent of the federal credit to 100 percent.
- Invest nearly $611 million in K-12 education, including:
- $188 million in general equalization aid to provide continued property tax relief and offset inflationary cost increases, including:
- $162.4 million in additional revenue limit authority to provide a per pupil revenue limit increase of $200 for the 2022-23 school year is offset by the general equalization aid increase.
- $15.5 million to account for the choice levy increase is offset by the general equalization aid increase.
- $172.6 million to increase the state’s special education aid reimbursement rate in FY23 from an estimated 30 percent to 40 percent.
- $103.7 million for increasing per-pupil aid by $128 per student.
- $20 million for out-of-school time grants to support high-quality after-school programs and other out-of-school time programs.
- $20 million for lead testing and remediation on school grounds and $250,000 to purchase water bottle filling stations that provide filtered drinking water.
- $20 million for a new reading professional aid program to help schools employ, hire, or retain reading teachers and reading specialists.
- $18.3 million for a revamped bilingual-bicultural aid program, which will expand eligibility and support more districts and $750,000 to help teachers become licensed/certified as bilingual teachers and teachers of English as a second language.
- $18 million toward additional investments and expanded eligibility in the school mental health aid program.
- $5.7 million to increase high-cost special education aid reimbursement from 40 percent to 60 percent in FY23.
- $9.9 million toward an Urban Excellence Initiative that will expand summer school grants, enhance early childhood education opportunities, support community engagement to improve academic achievement, and support principals in the state’s five largest school districts.
- $3 million for a driver education aid program for low-income students.
- $2.6 million to fully fund reimbursements under the school breakfast program.
- $2.4 million to alleviate the difference in federal reimbursement for federal payments for reduced-price and free meals.
- $750,000 to help teachers become licensed to teach computer science.
- $23.4 million to provide an additional $642 per pupil increase for all private and independent charter school programs.
Mentioned in This Press Release
Recent Press Releases by Gov. Tony Evers
Gov. Evers, WisDOT Announce More than $134 Million in Quarterly Aid Payments for Local Roads and CommunitiesJan 31st, 2023 by Gov. Tony Evers
“Since 2019, we’ve improved more than 5,800 miles of roads and highways across the state, but there is more work to be done to ensure municipalities have the support and resources they need to keep fixing the darn roads,” said Gov. Evers.