The Legislature’s budget-writing committee on Wednesday approves more than $120 million dollars in cuts to state government. Joint Finance Committee co-chair, Representative Robin Vos, noting these lapses had been approved as part of Governor Scott Walker’s state budget. “This is not some surprise, it’s not something that was unplanned. These reductions have been planned since the budget was passed in July,” he says.
AUDIO: Bob Hague reports (1:05)
The panel approves the cuts on a party line vote, and Vos notes there’s been greater transparency to the process than when changes were made to previous state budgets. Senator Bob Jauch says oversight doesn’t count for much if the committee won’t exercise some control. “The reality, is this is nothing more than a rubber stamp,” says Jauch.
The cuts fall hard on the University of Wisconsin System: $46 million over the first quarter of the year, on top of $250 million in cuts already made. Vos says UW Madison interim Chancellor David Ward has indicated his school “can handle” that.