MADISON – Governor Scott Walker Friday unveiled his fiscal reform plan that will allow the state budget to be balanced without tax increases. His proposal also gives local governments and schools the tools they need to balance their budgets without property tax hikes.
WMC issued the following statement:
“These proposed changes will allow government at all levels to better manage costs, increase efficiency and ultimately improve the quality of government services. In the long run they will make government more affordable and provide long overdue relief to taxpayers.”
“These are modest changes and are consistent with changes made at private businesses.”
The proposal is consistent with the WMC policy agenda promoting limiting government spending and taxing.
The plan calls for public employees at all levels to contribute 50 percent of their annual pension payment and cover 12.6 percent of the average cost of their annual health insurance premium. These levels are consistent with the average employee contribution for public sector employees nationwide and are still below average compared to the private sector.
The bill would also limit collective bargaining for most public employees to wages only and place a cap on any increases based on the consumer price index. Any increases exceeding the cap would have to be approved by voters at referendum.
The proposal also calls for debt restructuring, the sale of state owned heating plants, and lapses various unspent amounts to the general fund while increasing certain appropriations to cover shortfalls in Medicaid and Corrections.