Lawmakers continue work on budget deal

Details being worked out to cut taxes, boost school revenue
Lawmakers continue work on budget deal

State lawmakers are working to finalize the state budget ahead of a scheduled vote in the Joint Finance Committee Tuesday.

At least one lawmaker says that vote is unlikely because of the details being worked out on a final deal to cut taxes and boost school revenue.

Sen. Scott Fitzgerald, R-Juneau, is one of the GOP leadership members that spent much of Monday at the Legislative Fiscal Bureau going over the details of an income tax cut proposed last week by Rep. Dale Kooyenga, R-Brookfield, that is supported by the majority members in the state Assembly.

Taxes, along with school funding and an expansion of private school vouchers are all on the agenda in the Finance Committee on Tuesday.

“What we’re working toward is building a larger tax cut and you have to do it in relationship to having a balanced budget,” said Fitzgerald. “Also, we know there’s going to be more money in schools and that’s a factor as well. So it’s looking at these separate pieces and seeing how they interact with each other.”

Lawmakers continue work on budget deal

Meanwhile, Democrats took to the bully pulpit Monday hoping for three amendments, including $275 dollars per student in public school aid, the removal of voucher provisions and an expansion of Medicaid that Gov. Scott Walker has said he wouldn’t include.

“What we have before us tomorrow will in some ways be a very clear choice,” said Rep. Cory Mason, D-Racine. “Do we want to invest in tax breaks that by-and-large favor the rich, or do we want to reinvest in K-12 education?”

Finance is scheduled to meet Tuesday morning, but Fitzgerald expressed doubt it would happen.

“I would be surprised,” said Fitzgerald. “There’s just so much going back and forth right now from just a knowledge perspective and trying to get a grasp on where we’re at.”