Press Releases

Dale J. Knapp or Todd A. Berry
608-241-9789
wistax@wistax.org

State Aid Cuts, Property Tax Limits Slow Growth in Local Government Revenues

Counties, Municipalities Continue to Fund Public Safety

May 7, 2013

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MADISON—While state government made headlines over the past decade moving from problem budget to problem budget, local governments experienced more significant but less noticed financial change. County revenue growth that averaged nearly 8% annually in the early 1990s slowed to just 1.5% per year during 2005-11. Municipal revenue increases also slowed from an average of 5.5% to 2.7% per year. The causes and consequences of this shift are featured in "The Local Squeeze? State Aid Cuts, Tax Limits, and Local Government Finances," the latest report from the nonpartisan researchers at the Wisconsin Taxpayers Alliance (WISTAX).

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Todd A. Berry
608-241-9789
wistax@wistax.org

Is Messy State Income Tax Ripe for Spring Cleaning?

April 19, 2013

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If the state had a checklist for spring cleaning, income taxes would be on it. No
one benefits from complex laws that burden individuals, small businesses, and tax collectors alike. State officials have been tinkering with the income tax since the late 1990s, piling change on change, adding lines to tax forms and pages to instructions with little benefit to the typical taxpayer.

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Dale J. Knapp or Todd A. Berry
608-241-9789
wistax@wistax.org

Rising State Debt Concerns Some Lawmakers

Governor Walker Proposes to Continue Borrowing Trend

April 1, 2013

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MADISON—Over the past decade, state debt rose 131.9%; in per capita terms, it more than doubled. These figures concern some state lawmakers as Governor Walker (R) requests over $2.1 billion in borrowing in his 2013-15 state budget, according to a new report by the Wisconsin Taxpayers Alliance (WISTAX), "State budget sticking points (II): Debt and deficits." WISTAX is a nonpartisan, nonprofit organization dedicated to policy research and citizen education.

 

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Todd A. Berry or Katherine Lindsay
608-241-9789
wistax@wistax.org

Participation Grows in Public School Options

Program Size and Financial Impact Vary Throughout State

March 28, 2013

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MADISON—In 2012, more than 125,000 students participated in one of Wisconsin’s five school option programs. A new study from the Wisconsin Taxpayers Alliance (WISTAX) shows very different participation rates in Milwaukee compared to the rest of the state, due largely to more options available there. According to WISTAX, only 31% of Milwaukee students attended a traditional local public school in 2012, while 81% of students elsewhere did. The new study, "School Options in Wisconsin: Participation and Finance," also highlights the varied approaches Wisconsin takes to funding the many options. WISTAX is a nonprofit, nonpartisan organization dedicated to public policy research and citizen education.

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Dale J. Knapp or Todd A. Berry
608-241-9789
wistax@wistax.org

School Finance to be a Budget Sticking Point?

Declining-Revenue Schools More Prevalent in Republican Senate Districts

March 20, 2013

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MADISON—According to various reports, some Republican senators are taking a second look at Governor Scott Walker’s (R) K-12 school proposals, particularly those related to school finance. The move may be partly explained by political geography, according to a new Wisconsin Taxpayers Alliance (WISTAX) analysis. Of 424 school districts, 49 had lower revenues in 2013 than in 2003, and two-thirds of those are in Republican senate districts. WISTAX is a nonpartisan, nonprofit organization dedicated to policy research and citizen education.

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