MADISON – Republicans are calling on Governor Tony Evers to approve their tax cut plan as he faces a decision to approve, veto, or partially veto the state budget.
Dresser’s Republican MP Gae Magnafici said Friday that Evers should approve the tax cuts after vetoing measures that increase the $ 2.2 billion tax break.
The five vetoes over the past three years included Evers’ moves in the last two-year budget to raise fuel taxes earlier and a Republican-led proposal that would have required Evers to use part of the state’s federal COVID-19 aid allocation in the direction of a wealth tax relief, which in his view is not a permissible use of the funds.
The Republican budget proposal, which Evers can now approve, veto, or partially veto, includes over $ 3 billion in income and property tax cuts. About three-quarters of the income tax cuts would go to those who earn 100,000 or more a year.
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Magnafici said Evers would leave the option of a full veto budget open to “bring the total missed opportunity for families in Wisconsin to $ 5.6 billion”. A full budget veto is now less likely as the state risks losing $ 2.2 billion in federal funds.
“I urge Governor Evers to correct the injustice of the previously rejected tax breaks. The Republican legislature is giving Governor Evers another opportunity to do the right thing. I hope he takes it,” Magnafici said.
The Evers spokeswoman replied that he had signed laws to cut taxes and that Republicans had removed the tax cuts from Evers’ budget proposal, which included tax breaks for low and middle income residents. Republicans also rejected Evers’ request for a special session on education and wealth tax relief last year.
Republican lawmakers were able to propose the cuts as the state is expected to generate $ 4.4 billion more revenue than previously projected. The Democrats wanted more of that amount to be used to invest in other programs.
“I don’t think any elected official wants higher taxes on anything or increases taxes,” said Senator LaTonya Johnson, a Milwaukee Democrat who sits on the joint finance committee. “There have been a lot of priorities in my opinion that we haven’t done or done enough. If we don’t address the most pressing issues that we often overlook, it’s just costing us more on the road.”
The Senate also approved a separate bill that would abolish the personal property tax that companies pay on their furniture and equipment. Abolishing the tax would cost the state about $ 245 million a year and likely result in a tax break for railroad companies. Legislators passed an amendment that would pour nearly $ 45 million a year into the state’s transportation fund to account for lost tax payments.
Evers has not yet said whether he would sign the measure.