MacIver Newsmakers: State Rep. John Nygren Asks, Why Mess With Success?

MacIver News Service | February 8, 2019

By M.D. Kittle

MADISON, Wis. — State Rep. John Nygren believes Wisconsin politicians should manage the state budget with the physicians’ maxim: First do no harm. 

“Things are flying high, things are going well. Let’s not mess it up,” the Marinette Republican told MacIver News Service not long after the state budget-writing committee he co-chairs passed the Assembly Republican’s middle-class tax cut plan Thursday on a party-line vote. 

The plan would deliver $340 million annually in tax relief, targeting individuals making $100,000 or less and families earning up to $150,000. The median income family would see about $310 in state income tax cuts. 

Unlike Democrat Gov. Tony Evers’ middle-class tax cut package, the GOP plan would tap into the $588.5 million in excess revenue and, in the coming years, the projected $2.4 billion in surplus tax collections.

Evers is proposing capping the popular manufacturing and agricultural tax credit to help fund his plan. 

Bad idea, says Nygren. A legislative review of the Evers’ proposal estimates it could cost state coffers over $1 billion. 

“We’re not raising taxes on manufacturers and farmers who have helped get us to the place of prosperity,” the lawmaker said. 

Rep. Nygren sat down with MacIver Thursday afternoon to talk tax cuts, transportation, Foxconn, and suspenders. He is our guest in this edition of MacIver Newsmakers.