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This week, Governor Walker commended the Wisconsin State Legislature on passing key components of his Ambitious Agenda for 2018 – the majority of which passed with bipartisan support.

He also joined families from across Wisconsin to sign his $100 Per-Child Tax Rebate and August Back-to-School Sales Tax Holiday into law and submitted his Health Care Stability Plan for federal approval. Wisconsin also maintained its historic 2.9% unemployment rate for the second consecutive month, adding more than 8,900 new private sector jobs!

1. Passing Governor Walker’s Ambitious Agenda

Governor Walker commended the Wisconsin State Legislature for approving his Ambitious Agenda for 2018 in a historic session that provided the most funding in actual dollars for K-12 education in history, a plan to lower premiums for those in Obamacare’s individual market, welfare reform, a $100-per-child tax rebate and August sales tax holiday, and more.

“We are delivering real results for Wisconsin’s hardworking families. Wisconsin is winning, and we are getting positive things done for the people our state on issues like education, health care, and welfare reform. With our unemployment rate at an all-time low, 2.9%, our future has never looked brighter. Together, we will continue moving Wisconsin forward.” – Governor Walker

In addition, more than 94 percent of the bills signed into law by Governor Walker since 2011 have received more than just Republican votes.

2. Signing Bipartisan $100 Per-Child Tax Rebate, August Back-to-School Sales Tax Holiday into Law

This week, Governor Walker signed Wisconsin’s $100-per-child tax rebate and August sales tax holiday into law. The bill creates a $100-per-child tax rebate for every dependent child living at home under the age of 18 as of December 31, 2017, and an August back-to-school sales tax holiday on school-related items from August 1-5, 2018.

In a statement, Governor Walker said:

“This rebate and sales tax holiday will help Wisconsin families with the costs of raising children. A couple hundred dollars more in the family budget could really make a difference, particularly when getting ready for the next school year. It could mean a new pair of shoes, a winter coat, activity fees at school, or a co-pay at the doctor or dentist. We are giving this money back to the hardworking taxpayers because it is their money to begin with, and we want them to spend it on their priorities, not Madison’s priorities.”

Those who claim the rebate will receive the money before school starts this fall and have the option to receive it through a check in the mail or direct deposit. Additionally, state sales tax will not be charged from August 1-5 for those days on school supplies where each item is $75 or less, clothing where each item is $75 or less, computers where each item is $750 or less, and computer supplies where each item is $250 or less.

3. Adding 8,900 Private Sector Jobs and Holding Unemployment at All-Time Low 2.9%

“In 2010, our unemployment rate peaked at 9.3 percent. Today, it’s down to 2.9 percent, an all-time low. More people are working in Wisconsin than ever before, and thanks to our pro-jobs environment and highly-skilled, dependable workforce, we are maintaining record-low unemployment levels across the state. Wisconsin’s economy is booming and our investments in workforce development and talent attraction will continue supporting record levels of employment.” – Governor Walker

According to data provided by the Bureau of Labor Statistics and released by the Wisconsin Department of Workforce Development, Wisconsin created 8,900 private sector jobs and the preliminary unemployment rate held at 2.9 percent in March 2018, the second consecutive month for the record low rate.

4. Submitting Governor Walker’s Health Care Stability Plan for Federal Approval

Governor Walker, through the Office of the Commissioner of Insurance (OCI), submitted the 1332 Waiver for State Innovation Application under the Affordable Care Act (ACA) for federal approval. 2017 Wisconsin Act 138 allows Wisconsin to leverage federal funding for the operation of a state-based reinsurance plan; the Health Care Stability Plan.

Upon federal approval, Wisconsin estimates premiums will be reduced by 10.6 percent from levels that otherwise would have occurred, resulting in a 5 percent decrease in 2019 premiums, compared to 2018.

5. Preparing Wisconsin’s Workforce with New Mobile Job Center

The talent attraction legislation that Governor Walker signed this week puts the gears in motion to develop a mobile job center that will bring critical services to rural and urban areas where transportation or other barriers make it difficult to access a brick-and-mortar job center.

In a statement, Governor Walker said:

"The state's record-low unemployment and record-high number of people employed only reinforces that we can't leave any skilled talent on the sidelines, including individuals who are already living in our communities and don't have easy access to employment and training services. The mobile job center will help us reach more people and provide greater access to the training needed to fill good-paying jobs."

The mobile job center is part of the comprehensive talent attraction package in which the Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation (WEDC) will coordinate with DWD and the Departments of Tourism and Veterans Affairs to recruit and retain workers in Wisconsin.