Governor Jim Doyle gives his eighth and final state-of-the-state address tonight.

Senate Republican Rob Cowles of Green Bay says the state has some very significant financial problems, and that needs to be addressed in the governor’s speech.

“Now, do we have some good things going on? Yes. I think that we’re turning the corner. But the positive and the negative need to be mixed together. We cannot just put our head in the sand and say everything is hunky-dory, because whoever the next governor is … is gonna have one heck of a challenge dealing with this.”

Governor Doyle has decided not to run for a third term.

Cowles says the state used up a lot of one-time money, so some serious changes need to be made. He doubts there will be any more bailouts from the federal government, and he says the legislature will strongly resist raising taxes. Cowles says the governor simply cannot continue taking money from Peter to pay Paul.

“We have a structural deficit that’s going to exceed $2.5 billion.”

Wisconsin’s unemployment rate for December was up to 8.7%, and 163-thousand jobs were lost in the past year.

Jackie Johnson 1:18

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