"Running out of revenue options:" Milwaukee County Executive introduces 2019 budget

NOW: “Running out of revenue options:“ Milwaukee County Executive introduces 2019 budget

MILWAUKEE (CBS 58) -- The Milwaukee County budget for 2019 is just under $1.2 billion. There is no wheel tax or paid meter parking at county parks in the budget. 

Abele introduced the budget to the county board on Monday, October 1. 

If the budget is approved, residents can expect to pay $0.75 more at the Milwaukee County Zoo and $1 daily increase for the GO Pass and New Freedom bus pass.

“No one who wants any of them (cuts) its just a reflection of what we have to do when we have 14 million to cut," said Abele. 

According to the budget, Milwaukee County taxpayers send more to the State of Wisconsin each year than it gets back. 

“Milwaukee County needs to fundamentally shift how we can raise revenue to cover our expenses or we will have no choice to severely limit county services in a way people will be rightly disappointed with," said Chris Abele, Milwaukee County Executive. 

The County Board of Supervisors and the County Executive is working to establish a "Fair Deal for Milwaukee County Workshop" to help find long-term funding solutions. 

"The state needs to allow Milwaukee County to keep a little more of what we generate, here," said Abele.

In order to generate money, certain county parks will be used as campsites which is expected to bring in about $50,000.

The largest gap-closing measure is a 1.1 percent tax levy made by county departments.

Half a million dollars would go to increasing salaries for Correction Officers to help with retention.

‘If we don’t address this, this issue will not become an expensive but a dangerous one," Abele said. 

The budget would also go towards services to end homelessness and caring for seniors. 

"We are pulling every lever we can to do more better for less. Meanwhile, we are sending more to the state and getting less from the state and the state budget keeps growing. I'd like to think we got a great team but I am not a magician," said Abele. 

There will be a public meeting on October 29 and the county board will vote on November 5. 

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