Walker's Budget Proposes Millions in Breaks for Special Interest Contributors

Republican Gov. Scott Walker’s proposed 2017-19 state budget contains millions of dollars in lower fees and taxes for business, construction, agriculture, health care and utility interests, which contributed $10.2 million to his campaign over the past five years. Walker’s Budget Proposes Millions in Breaks for Special Interest Contributors

March 16, 2017


Here are some of those breaks, which must also be approved during the GOP-controlled legislature’s consideration of the budget in the coming months.

Increasing the angel and early stage investment tax credits by $5.4 million over two years for certain new businesses;

Providing $6.3 million in 2018-19 to pay for additional economic development grants awarded by the Wisconsin Economic Development Corp.;

Creating a $2 million sales tax exemption over two years for certain retailers for prepared food made off-site, frozen and then sold;

Increasing the current sales tax exemption for lump-sum construction contracts by $2.75 million over two years so it applies to all construction contracts and subcontractors;

Repealing the ambulatory surgical center assessment, which is used to partially fund the Medical Assistance program, saving medical centers and hospitals $5 million annually;

Effectively reducing agricultural pesticide application licenses and commercial feed surcharges by about $4.5 million over the next two years;

Repealing the state’s stray voltage program, which will save certain electric utilities about $850,000 a year in fees to fund it. The program identifies and resolves electricity problems on farms that affect livestock and milk production.