Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker
’s proposed budget will result in more than three-quarters of the state’s school districts cutting school property taxes, a new study released Monday found. The only way that the tax rates won’t drop is if those districts ask voters’ permission to keep the levy the same, the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reported Tuesday.
Walker faced intense scrutiny and controversy over his proposed budget that includes big spending cuts and the elimination of collective bargaining rights for public employees. Now, a report by University of Wisconsin-Madison economist Andrew Reschovsky shows that school districts in suburban Milwaukee will have the largest property tax reductions.
Cullen Werwie, spokesman for the governor, said that Walker’s two-year budget plan was designed to keep taxes from increasing while reining in school spending that has outpaced inflation over the past 15 years.
Walker’s proposed 2011-’13 spending plan calls for cutting $834 million in state aid for K-12 education as part of an effort to balance the state budget without raising taxes or fees.
To keep school districts from raising local property taxes to make up for the cuts, Walker recommended a decrease in the amount per student that public school districts are able to receive from the combination of state aid and property taxes.
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