A more than two month delay in passing a state budget ended Thursday, with Governor Scott Walker signing the $76 billion spending plan into law.
Surrounded by school children in Neenah, the governor touted the $639 million increase in funding for public schools included in the plan. Overall Walker noted there will be “$11.5 billion invested in schools, in K-12 education in this budget and, at the same time, we have lower property taxes on a median value home.”
Walker said the budget also includes another tuition freeze for University of Wisconsin System students.
Democrats criticized the plan, along with 99 full and partial vetoes the governor made before signing the bill. “This budget was bad from the start, and with his veto pen Gov. Walker managed to make it worse by cutting more funding from Wisconsin
schools while keeping a tax break for 47 millionaires,” argued Senate Democratic Leader Jennifer Shilling (D-La Crosse). “Families in Wisconsin deserve better than a budget that continues to delay road projects, limits healthcare access and takes funding away from local schools.”
The budget was supposed to be in place by the end of June, but Republicans spent months debating several key issues, including whether to increase borrowing to pay for road projects. Walker opposed using tax and fees increases, while Assembly Republicans argued the state should not be so reliant on borrowing.
Affiliate WHBY contributed to this report.