HEADLINES : Wisconsin
Scott Walker's budget to lower income tax rates, freeze local aid
Paring income taxes for the middle class and keeping property taxes frozen, Gov. Scott Walker unveiled a two-year $68 billion budget Wednesday that would not increase state aid to local governments and provide only a modest hike to public schools, instead funneling tax dollars into public universities, private voucher schools and upkeep of the state's health programs.
In two of the biggest ticket items, the Republican governor over two years would cut income taxes by $343 million, or 2.2% overall, and increase funding to the University of Wis consin System by $181 million. Introducing Sgt. Luis Cortes-Avila, a National Guard soldier who became a U.S. citizen while serving in Afghanistan, the governor said in his 41-minute speech that his budget would help more Wisconsinites like the veteran live the American dream.
But not all the news was rosy. Using the administration's own accounting according to private-sector standards, Walker's budget would grow the state's deficit in its main account by nearly $600 million over the two years to $2.64 billion.