WMC: Municipalities to use taxpayer funds to advocate for higher taxes

For more information, please contact:
Nick Novak, 608.258.3400

MADISON – A letter recently obtained by Wisconsin Manufacturers & Commerce (WMC) shows the League of Wisconsin Municipalities (LWM) is asking local governments to financially support an advocacy campaign calling for higher taxes.

Jerry Deschane, Executive Director of the LWM, wrote to Wisconsin Mayors, City Managers, Village Presidents and Administrators asking them to contribute public funds to the advocacy campaign that will try to convince legislators and the governor to support their so-called “dark store” legislation.

After failing to convince legislative leaders they should support higher taxes this past session, the LWM is now calling on its members to provide what could be hundreds of thousands of taxpayer dollars to try and convince policymakers that higher taxes are in taxpayers’ best interest.

“It is laughable that taxpayer funds could be used to promote higher taxes, however that is exactly what the League of Wisconsin Municipalities is trying to do,” said Scott Manley, WMC Senior Vice President of Government Relations. “After nearly eight years of Wisconsin reducing the tax burden at almost every level, we have seen countless local businesses across the state create family-sustaining, middle-class jobs. Now is not the time to return to the tax-and-spend policies of the past that only aided in weakening our economy.”

In addition to pushing for the use of taxpayer dollars to increase taxes on those very same taxpayers, the LWM also misstates in its letter what the legislation would do. According to the Wisconsin Department of Revenue, between 2008 and 2017, the statewide property tax burden has shifted from residential to commercial and manufacturing property taxpayers by 2.8 percent.

These pieces of legislation would make this property shift even worse by hiking property taxes based solely on occupancy or having financing agreements such as mortgages or sale-leaseback contracts. The implications of these bills go far beyond retail to all businesses.

WMC has vigilantly been defending its members and taxpayers against this legislation that will do nothing more than raise taxes of local businesses, hiking costs for all Wisconsinites. For more information about how the “dark store” legislation will raise taxes, visit the following links:

WMC Two Minute Drill: Episode 29 – “Dark Store” Legislation
Wisconsin Manufacturer: Dark Store Bill Would Raise My Property Taxes
$68,000 Per Year

 

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