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Category: State budget

Wisconsin budget battle begins: GOP lawmakers plan to remove 280 items from Gov. Tony Evers’ proposal

Milwaukee Journal Sentinel

Noted: The two-year state budget plan also won’t allow the University of Wisconsin System to borrow for operational expenses, restore collective bargaining for public employees, make Juneteenth a state holiday, create a so-called red flag law for gun owners or adopt maps from the governor’s redistricting commission.

Republicans plan to remove hundreds of items from Gov. Tony Evers’ budget proposal

Wisconsin State Journal

Republicans are also stripping the budget of proposals to allow the University of Wisconsin System to borrow money for operational expenses. They also stripped a provision that would have expanded a tuition promise program to all of the state’s universities and their branch campuses, building off a UW-Madison tuition promise, which provides free tuition to students from families making up to $60,000.

A minor change could bring the state $1.6 billion in federal dollars. Republican legislators are uninterested.

Milwaukee Journal Sentinel

Quoted: Republicans in Wisconsin first took their stance when Scott Walker was governor, contending that the federal government eventually could stop paying as much as promised for the expansion.

“There might be a little bit of Scott Walker legacy in all of this,” said Barry Burden, a political scientist at the University of Wisconsin-Madison.

Gov. Tony Evers authorizes emergency work after concrete slabs fall at UW-Madison. Tommy Thompson says other campuses have similar problems.

Milwaukee Journal Sentinel

Gov. Tony Evers authorized emergency work on the 19-floor Madison building that houses the University of Wisconsin System’s headquarters Thursday after two precast concrete railing slabs fell from the third floor.

The 10-by-6 foot slabs fell from Van Hise Hall on UW-Madison’s campus Sunday, landing directly in front of the building’s entrance. No one was injured.

Evers directs millions for climate change initiatives in budget, putting focus on green energy in Wisconsin

Milwaukee Journal Sentinel

Noted:

Also included in the budget: $100 million in borrowing for clean energy conservation projects at state agencies and the University of Wisconsin System, helping to meet goals of energy reduction and reduced utility costs. The savings on utility prices would be used to pay off the bonds.

Paul Fanlund: These UW-Madison students solve problems across the state

The Capital Times

An example is a $600,000 item buried in Gov. Tony Evers’ $91-billion proposed two-year state budget. The money would expand a six-year-old University of Wisconsin-Madison program designed to tap the expertise and energy of students on the flagship Madison campus to solve problems and improve lives in communities throughout Wisconsin.

Republican lawmakers refuse to approve any building projects in Evers’ $2.4 billion plan

The Capital Times

Evers’ plan is funded by nearly $2 billion in new borrowing and includes $1 billion for the University of Wisconsin System. Among the projects Republicans rejected were a new state office building in Milwaukee, a host of projects at UW-Madison including the removal of two residence halls, an expansion of the Mendota Mental Health Institute’s Juvenile Treatment Center and more.

GOP-led finance committee to hold 3 in-person budget sessions and 1 online offering

Wisconsin State Journal

Public hearings are planned for April 9 at UW-Whitewater, April 21 at Rhinelander’s Hodag Dome and April 22 at UW-Stout in Menomonie. The budget committee also will host an online session on April 28. The in-person public hearings will take place from 10 a.m. through 5 p.m. and will provide time for attendees to testify.

Paul Jadin: UW, broadband, inclusion are key to Madison region’s success

Wisconsin State Journal

First, education is king. Don’t ever allow UW-Madison to be anything but a premier, world-class institution. State and private dollars invested now will be leveraged considerably by virtue of the fact that most of the federal investment will go to expanded research at universities such as UW.

Facing ‘financial disaster’ from COVID-19, UW System pushes for borrowing ability

Wisconsin State Journal

COVID-19 has caused the “biggest financial disaster” the university has ever seen, UW-Madison Chancellor Rebecca Blank said. Through federal stimulus money, furloughs, pay cuts for leadership, travel restrictions and targeted budget cuts to different units, Blank said she’s optimistic the financial gap can be resolved over the next two years. But she also renewed her case for giving the university borrowing authority.

Capital City Sunday: Nursing homes prepare for vaccinations, COVID-19 liability, and UW tuition freeze

WKOW-TV 27

Since 2013, tuition for in-state undergraduate students at UW campuses has been frozen.It’s helped protect students from the rising costs of college tuition, but a new report by the Wisconsin Policy Forum found this incentive for students is threatening the UW’s ability to  be competitive against other universities. “The tuition freeze is a clear part of that, but you also see stagnant state funding, enrollment declines that are greater than other states nationally … all things that were adding up before COVID-19,” said Jason Stein, Research Director for the Wisconsin Policy Forum.

Report: Wisconsin’s public colleges are falling behind as state funds lag and enrollment drops

Milwaukee Journal Sentinel

A new report on the financial health of Wisconsin’s state universities and technical colleges found lagging state investment, enrollment challenges and — for University of Wisconsin schools — an ongoing tuition freeze as some of several factors threatening their competitiveness.