If one thing became apparent Wednesday, as members of the legislature's budget conference committee continued to talk past one another, it was that the two sides remain philosophically miles apart. Speaker Mike Huebsch (R-West Salem) and his Republican negotiators offered the Assembly's property tax freeze and levy limit for tech college districts, and rejection of the governor's proposal to increase the real estate transfer fee, all of which Senate Majority Leader Judy Robson (D-Beloit) called "disappointing." Sen. Bob Jauch (D-Poplar) once again called the GOP budget "fiscally reckless," because it leaves no money in reserve, while Huebsch said it puts taxpayers first. "The bottom line is, if we don't spend money we don't have, we don't have a structural deficit." Robson and the Democrats offered a package of proposals centered on the needs of Milwaukee, which resulted in more partisan wrangling Wednesday afternoon, but no agreement. The eight member panel is scheduled to meet again Thursday morning at 11:00.
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