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MADISON – The Wisconsin State Assembly passed a budget proposal leaving many of the priorities of Wisconsinites underfunded or completely missing. State Representative Dianne Hesselbein (D-Middleton) issued the following statement on the passage of the budget proposal.

“After months of deliberation, the Republican-controlled State Assembly passed the biennial budget which missed opportunities to give the people of Wisconsin what they asked for in a budget. Republican politicians took every chance to serve their partisan interests instead of their constituents.

“During this budget process, Republicans chose to spend more money covering fewer people by blocking the Medicaid expansion. 70% of Wisconsinites agreed with taking the Medicaid expansion, which would have saved $324 million to invest back into our healthcare system and provided 82,000 people with affordable coverage. Additionally, accepting the Medicaid expansion would have brought over $1 billion in federal funds to our state and lowered premiums for everyone. Republicans made a fiscally irresponsible decision by denying Wisconsinites access to affordable healthcare.

“My Republican colleagues also decided to flush a sustainable transportation solution down the drain. After over eight years of kicking the can down the road, Republicans came up with an incredibly disappointing ‘solution’ to fund our roads asking only Wisconsinites to pay more in title and registration fees and letting out-of-state drivers off the hook.

“To make matters worse, Republicans decided to take another ax to education funding from K-12 to our UW-System. Republicans cut over $500 million from the Governor’s Special Education reimbursement preventing much-needed funding from reaching our children in the classroom. Republicans also went after our UW-System. The Republicans did not fund the tuition freeze, refused to give the UW-System an inflationary funding increase, and blocked vital capital projects.

“The list goes on, but Republicans had many chances to provide common-sense solutions to some of the problems our state is facing and address the issues their constituents are most concerned about. Republicans are ignoring the will of the people and their budget proposal was filled with missed opportunities.”

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