Assembly Speaker Robin Vos is accusing Dem Gov. Tony Evers of lying to voters and GOP lawmakers after he vetoed into state law a provision annually increasing caps on K-12 school spending for the next four centuries.

In a new interview with WISN’s “UpFront,” Vos defended calling Evers a liar after host Matt Smith pointed out it was a bold accusation. is an “UpFront” partner.

Vos claimed the guv lied to voters during the campaign last year when he said he was opposed to “massive” property tax increases and to GOP lawmakers during the negotiating process. The Rochester Republican added it “really calls into question his ability to try to find bipartisan compromise like we’ve been working on this entire year.”

“The truth is the truth,” Vos said of his accusation. “When you go ahead and make a promise, when you go ahead and negotiate a deal and then try to find an underhanded way to actually accomplish what you think is in your political best interest, that’s wrong.”

On Wednesday, Assembly Majority Leader Tyler August, R-Lake Geneva, accused Evers of breaking a deal on school funding with his veto. But Evers spokesperson Britt Cudaback countered August was “never part of any conversation the governor had with Republican leaders. If he had been, he’d know that the governor upheld every part of the bipartisan compromise reached with” Assembly Speaker Robin Vos and Senate Majority Leader Devin LeMahieu.

Vos told “UpFront” the GOP Legislature is considering a lawsuit to challenge the veto, though he said it wasn’t his first choice. Calling Evers a “dictator,” he said it was improper for one person “to use a creative veto to have property tax increases guaranteed for the next 400 years.”

Evers’ veto put into state law an annual increase of $325 per pupil in how much school districts spend on students through a mix of state aid and property taxes. If the state fully funded the increase, it would have a small effect on overall school property tax levies, though that aid would compete with other programs that use general purpose revenue.

Future guvs and legislatures also could change the law Evers created to change the annual increase, whether it would be to increase it or reduce it.

Vos said former Govs. Tommy Thompson, Jim Doyle and Scott Walker didn’t try anything similar to Evers, by trying to “strike out a dash to try to do something like this,” calling the move unprecedented.

But in the 2017 budget, Walker struck the numbers one and two from “December 31, 2018” to leave just “December 3018” as he created a 1,001-year moratorium on allowing school districts to exceed revenue limits for expenses related to energy efficiency measures. The Legislature had sent him a budget that sought a one-year moratorium.

See a clip of the “UpFront” interview:

See Monday’s AM Update for more on the show.

Print Friendly, PDF & Email