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GOP tax shift continues to hurt Wisconsin schools and homeowners
MADISON, WI – Wisconsin homeowners continue to get hit with higher property taxes as Gov. Walker and Republican lawmakers prioritize corporate tax breaks at the expense of local schools. A new memo from the Legislative Fiscal Bureau revealed that property taxes on median-valued homes in Wisconsin jumped up again in 2018 and are now higher than 2014 despite Gov. Walker’s repeated budget promises.
“It’s simple math,” said Senate Democratic Leader Jennifer Shilling (D-La Crosse). “When Republicans slash school funding so they can hand out billions in corporate tax breaks, local homeowners are forced to pick up the cost to keep school doors open. It’s a not-so-secret Republican tax shift. Had we simply invested in schools and prioritized children, families wouldn’t be in this position.”
Since taking office, Gov. Walker has rejected numerous requests from school officials and the Department of Public Instruction to prioritize education funding and lower property taxes by investing $2.4 billion in K-12 school aids. Instead, Gov. Walker handed out billions in corporate tax breaks and cut $77.7 million in total K-12 funding since 2011 – forcing many school districts to make up for this lost funding through local referendums.
“The fact that Wisconsin might set another record for referendums this year shows just how harmful these Republican school cuts have been,” added Shilling. “Above all else, families want what’s best for their children. They want good schools, safe roads and affordable health care. Unfortunately, these priorities have all taken a back seat to the big business agenda and corporate tax giveaways championed by Gov. Walker and Republican lawmakers. Higher property taxes and fewer dollars in the classroom might be the Walker Way, but it’s not the Wisconsin Way.”