Joe Knilans: Former GM
Deb Kolste: Community Service, 9 years Janesville School Board

Where they stand

When they say down to discuss the issues, among News 3 anchor Eric Franke’s question was how can technical colleges be expected to retrain the workforce as their funding is being cut as demand increases.

Joe Knilans: “Their funding is going down because we didn't have the money at the state level. We cut that money from education.  We put that into Medicaid programs. $1.2 billion we put into Medicaid programs like BadgerCare and other programs for people who truly need it. Yes, people need education. But if we have people with health problems and health issues, they need the care too because that's life or death. That's not just education. Now, to the technical college, we also gave them the ability to adjust their budgets through the collective bargaining of Act 10, and we saw some of the technical colleges take advantage of that. And they have been adding classes in.”

Deb Kolste: “When you cut $71 million, which is about half of the technical college budget in the state budget, it's going to have impact. Then you take on top of that students now also have to... they've cut the funding for grants for students to attend college, now you've got a dilemma. So we read in the paper there's a skills gap. Well, that could be written. You've diminished the funding of K-12 by 1.6 billion, you've diminished the funding of the university system by 315 million, then the technical colleges.”