Gov. Walker gives budget proposal
Property taxes would drop slightly under the budget delivered by Governor Scott Walker. Based on what he said Tuesday night, settling the long dispute over school accountability appears far from getting settled.
The Governor talked about a plan giving parents more information on school performance. That is something that is already addressed in two separate legislative bills. Senate Majority Leader Scott Fitzgerald said he thinks Walker is trying to push the legislature to work together by including this in his budget.
“It sends a signal to the legislature that we probably need to come together and either address this directly in the budget, or come together to work toward getting one bill in place.” Fitzgerald said.
The education talk didn't stop there.
\"Today, I am excited to announce our plans to lift the cap on vouchers so more families, like Dina's, can have the choice to find the best school for their children.\" Walker said from the podium in the State Assembly Tuesday night.
He rolled out the plan to expand the voucher school program statewide.
\"Overall, we want to provide the best education possible for every child in this state.\" Walker said.
State Superintendent Tony Evers said this isn't a good plan. “There will be less money available for public schools. It's pretty simple.\" Evers said.
“Taxpayers are subsidizing private school tuition when we're not making the investment in the vast majority of children who are in our public schools. It makes no sense.\" said Representative Chris Taylor (D-Madison).
Proposed changes will also impact higher education. The University of Wisconsin system would have more freedom to manage itself, but the trade off is a $300-million cut in state funding. That's in addition to continuing a tuition freeze at each campus.
\"I ask the legislature to give our bold reform idea a serious look. As the father of a UW student, i have a real interest in the success of our state system and I believe this will make the University of Wisconsin stronger in the years to come.\" Walker said.
One of the most controversial proposals may be Walker's proposed plan to drug test people getting state aid. \"The next step is to require able-bodied adults without children to pass a drug test in order to get a welfare check. For those who fail, we will provide treatment, so we can help them get off of drugs.\" Walker said. If they fail again after, they would lose benefits.