MacIver Institute, June 12, 2019
By Ola Lisowski
MADISON, Wis. — The Joint Finance Committee (JFC) came one step closer to finishing work on the 2019-21 budget Tuesday, spending $1.88 billion more on building projects. That level of spending notches a new record, exceeding the previous high of $1.7 billion under former Democratic Gov. Jim Doyle.
Republicans agreed to spend and borrow nearly $1.9 billion on statewide building projects Tuesday, blowing away the $1 billion spent on the Building Commission in the last budget.
The party-line 12-4 vote came after three and a half hours of debate. The University of Wisconsin (UW) System will receive the largest portion of the new funding, with $1.026 billion more for buildings across the system.
Gov. Tony Evers had requested $2.5 billion in spending and borrowing in his capital budget. That package increased spending by 2.5 times over the prior budget, which authorized $1 billion in bonding.
The Republican-led Building Commission rejected Evers’ proposal outright in a March vote, calling the largest-ever capital budget “unrealistic and unsustainable.”
Instead, Republicans Tuesday finalized a plan that authorizes nearly $2 billion in borrowing and spending for projects across the state. The package nearly doubles bonding over former Republican Gov. Scott Walker’s last budget, for 2017-19. READ the REST