|MADISON – Governor Scott Walker released his Weekly Radio Address today titled “Making History in 2017.”Hi, Scott Walker here.
It’s hard to believe it went by so fast, but here we are at the end of 2017.
Over the past year, I visited more than 50 schools across the state. I gotta tell you, I love hearing from students, parents and teachers about how proud they are of their schools.
That’s why I am so proud that we put more actual dollars into schools than ever before – in the history of the state. This year, we added $200 per student and next year – on top of that – we will add another $200 per student. This will help ensure that children all across Wisconsin have access to a great education.
We also made major investments in our technical colleges and in the University of Wisconsin system. Plus, we froze UW tuition for all undergraduates from our state and provided the largest amount of needs-based financial assistance in history to make college more affordable for students and working families.
During 2017, I signed a budget that invests more than $6 billion into maintaining our roads and bridges and other infrastructure across the state. We gave local governments the largest increase in road and bridge aids in more than a decade. Through the end of the state budget, we will have invested $24 billion into our transportation system. That’s $3 billion more during our two terms than former Governor Jim Doyle did during the same amount of time. And we included funding for broadband expansion so that every part of the state has access to high-speed internet connections.
This year, we eliminated the state property tax. That’s right: 100% of the property taxpayers in the state saw a 100% reduction in your state property tax bill.
Next year, both property and income taxes will be lower in 2018 than they were in 2010. The cumulative impact of our tax relief through the end of the budget exceeds $8 billion. The state and local tax burden – once one of the highest in the nation – is now below the national average.
This is good for working families trying hard to make ends meet and save up for their kids’ college education. It is good for the young couple just looking to purchase their first home. It is good for the senior citizens living on fixed incomes. And it is good for the small business owner or family farmer who wants to grow their operations.
During the past year, our health care systems within the state ranked number one in the country for quality. And we rank as one of the top states in the nation for access to health care.
Wisconsin is a great place to live in, to work in, to go to school in, to raise a family in, to run a business in and, yes, (someday) to retire in. Traveling the state, I am so happy to hear how proud people are of their families, their homes, their schools, their employers, their places of worship and their organizations. I am proud to be the Governor of this great state.
From our family to yours, Happy New Year!