Assembly Committee Passes Gov. Scott Walker’s Tax Cut Proposal

MacIver News Service | February 6, 2014

[Madison, Wisc…] The Assembly Committee on Jobs, Economy and Mining voted 8-6 on Thursday to pass Governor Scott Walker’s tax cut proposal.

The Governor’s plan, Special Session Assembly Bill 1, would cut property taxes by $400 million by changing how the state’s technical colleges are funded and reduce income taxes by $100 million by adjusting the rate of the lowest tax bracket.

The bill passed along party lines with Republicans voting in favor.

“This money should go back into the hands of the people that worked hard and paid it in,” said Rep. Dan Knodl (R-Germantown) during the committee meeting.

Rep. Mike Kuglitsch (R-New Berlin) agreed with his Republican colleagues that the money should go back to taxpayers.

“The one thing I never hear from my constituents is ‘I’m not paying enough taxes’,” Kuglitsch said. “Our job is not to overtax our constituents and the citizens of this state.”

Democrats, however, said the proposal was reckless and could not support the bill.

“This bill spends money like drunken sailors, it’s irresponsible, and it will continue our decline,” Rep. Brett Hulsey (D-Madison) said during the meeting.

Rep. Fred Clark (D-Baraboo) is worried about increasing the structural deficit.

“This bill is going to increase our structural deficit by $100 million,” Clark said. “I can tell you people do not like that idea.”

Knodl responded to Clark’s comments on the structural deficit by pointing out that the tax cuts will encourage people to spend more money, which will lead to increased revenues for the state.

He cited Rep. Dale Kooyenga’s (R-Brookfield) testimony from the previous day that showed minimal economic growth would erase the structural deficit.

The Assembly is expected to take up the bill on Tuesday and pass it, according to Speaker Robin Vos (R-Burlington). The Senate has yet to schedule the bill for a vote and is expected to make changes.