Skip to main content

Walker signs Wisconsin's new 2-year $70 billion budget

  • Author:
  • Updated:

Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker signed into law a new $70 billion two-year budget that cuts income taxes by $650 million. The budget passed by the Republican-controlled legislature also expands private school vouchers and declines to expand the Medicaid program.

Before signing the budget Walker used his veto power to strike several provisions. He eliminated a move to make bail bondsmen - or bounty hunters - legal in Wisconsin. He also rejected a move to expel an investigative journalism center from the University of Wisconsin, saying the decision should be left up to the UW system and its regents.

But the basics of the budget were clear in advance of Sunday's signing ceremony. And they move Wisconsin in a decidedly different direction from its DFL-led western neighbor, which used the recent legislative session to raise taxes, put more money into public schools, and expand Medicare, among other things.

Star Tribune reporter Jim Ragsdale visited Madison in June and profiled the tale of two states ("There really couldn't be a starker contrast," said one Badger State lawmaker).

Walker says Wisconsin's tax policy will be a magnet for businesses looking to expand. Gov. Mark Dayton and other Minnesota Democrats have pointed to economic data showing the Gopher State outperforming its neighbor decisively in recent years.

Walker is one of eight Republicans elected governor in 2010 in states where voters had sided with President Obama two years earlier. In a USA Today piece looking ahead to the re-election campaigns in those states, Walker said he plans to strike a more conciliatory tone. He says it's not that he's changed , but rather that Wisconsin doesn't need tens of thousands of protesters. at the Capitol.

Next Up

Screen Shot 2022-05-21 at 5.46.37 PM

Video shows officers ended pursuit before fatal crash in Anoka

The crash occurred when the driver fled police during an attempted traffic stop in Coon Rapids.

Eli Hart

6-year-old Eli Hart identified as boy found dead in car trunk

The kindergartner's father was trying to get full custody of his son.


Boy found dead in trunk of car in Mound was kindergartner

"It is horrifying and difficult to process a tragedy of this magnitude, especially in our close-knit community," the superintendent wrote.

Minneapolis police

Man found yelling for help after being shot in Minneapolis

The shooting occurred on the 800 block of Elwood Avenue North at around 9:15 p.m.

Screen Shot 2022-05-21 at 9.56.21 AM

Minneapolis North principal says she was fired, district says otherwise

“MPS requires schools to follow protocols in times like that and I did not,” Friestleben said.

Kris Richard Severin

Inmate who escaped Minnesota prison is captured

The inmate escaped Wednesday morning.

Brave New Comedy Workshop in downtown Minneapolis.

Brave New Workshop cancels shows due to COVID-19 cases

The shows were scheduled for Friday and Saturday at the Brave New Workshop Comedy Theatre.

Austin Retterath

Body of missing U of M student found in Mississippi River

Austin Retterath was last seen alive in the morning hours of May 8.

"Love" mural seen in St. Paul.

Summer mural events to bring together community, shine light on MN artists

The 2022 Chroma Zone Mural & Art Festival will take place this weekend in St. Paul's Creative Enterprise Zone, with ensuing events happening this summer.


Gallery: Remodeled lakeside home in Prior Lake on market for $2.8M

It offers privacy at the end of a dead-end road fronting onto Lower Prior Lake.

golden valley police department

Carjacking outside ice arena in Golden Valley under investigation

Golden Valley PD confirmed it received a report of a carjacking Monday evening.


Gov. Walker recall officially on in Wisconsin

What will surely be one of the most watched political contests in the country has just started next door. Wisconsin's Republican governor, Scott Walker, is facing a historic recall after more than a year of high-profile protests. So what happens next? Talking Points Memo explains the process, while the Los Angeles Times explores what this means for the presidential race and the larger political climate.

Analysis: Walker wins in Wisconsin

Gov. Scott Walker survived a highly contentious recall election in Wisconsin on Tuesday, defeating Democrat and Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett. What did the result say about Walker, his stand against public employee unions, big money vs. grassroots campaigning and what's next for the two parties?

Wisconsin GOP sues election and ethics agency over Walker recall

The state GOP has filed suit against Wisconsin's Accountability Board over their handling of the recall effort. The lawsuit asks a judge to eliminate duplicate names, illegible signatures and clearly fake petitioners. Previously the board had said names, including Mickey Mouse or Adolf Hitler, would be accepted as long as they were accompanied by real addresses and proper dates.