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MADISON – Governor Scott Walker today 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,” said Governor Walker. “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.”

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

Governor Walker and the Legislature delivered results for the people of Wisconsin during a historic session including:

EDUCATION

  • Investing $11.5 billion into general and categorical aid for K-12 education over two years, an all-time high in actual dollars.
  • Increasing Sparsity Aid for rural school districts.
  • $100 Million School Safety Plan.
  • Providing $7,250,000 in new investments for mental health services in schools.
  • Investing $6,100,000 into special education incentives.
  • Ensuring High Cost Transportation Aid is fully funded with additional $10.4 million over the biennium.
  • Increased investment for hands-on science, technology, engineering, arts, and math (STEAM) education through FabLabs.
  • Creating and funding a teacher development grant program.
  • $1 million to fund a Rural School Teacher Talent pilot program.
  • Investing $5 million additional dollars to increase enrollment in high demand degree programs at the University of Wisconsin System.
  • Adding performance funding for the University of Wisconsin System.
  • Creating an Early College Credit Program.
  • Providing grants to train individuals to become teachers through dual enrollment.
  • Froze tuition for in-state University of Wisconsin System students for the sixth year in a row.
  • Increasing Wisconsin Grant program need-based financial aid by roughly $15 million to an all-time high.
  • Expanding veteran tuition remission benefits to certain children and spouses.
  • Providing $648,000 in need-based financial aid for Flexible Option students.
  • Investing $1,500,000 in special education transition readiness grants.

HEALTH CARE

  • Approving a waiver for a state reinsurance program that will reduce premiums in the individual market, increase coverage, and stabilize the health insurance market.
  • Increasing funding for the Rural Physicians Residency Assistance program by $100,000 per year.
  • Increasing funding for nursing home and personal care rates.
  • Entering Wisconsin into the Enhanced Nurse Licensure Compact.
  • Creating and funding an eight-bed Youth Crisis Stabilization Facility to prevent or de-escalate a minor's mental health crisis and avoid admissions to more restrictive settings.
  • Increasing funding by $750,000 GPR annually for graduate medical training programs.
  • Creating and funding a grant program at the Department of Health Services to control and prevent communicable diseases.

TAX RELIEF

  • Creation of a $100 per child tax rebate and sales tax holiday.
  • Eliminating the state levied property tax and ensured property taxes for a typical homeowner are lower in 2018 than they were in 2010.
  • Providing $74,400,000 in property tax relief to personal property taxpayers.

JOBS & WORKER TRAINING

  • Attracting Foxconn, the largest private sector investment in state history, that will create 13,000 good-paying, family-supporting jobs in Wisconsin.
  • Attracting millennials, veterans, and University of Wisconsin System alumni through a targeted talent attraction campaign.
  • Increasing Wisconsin Fast Forward training grants by $11,500,000.
  • Investing in training programs to help those with disabilities enter the workforce.

SUPPORT FOR CHILDREN AND FAMILIES

  • Helping more than 2,000 children in need of long-term care services by eliminating the child waitlist for these services.
  • Increasing funding for the Wisconsin Shares program for child care by $42,145,000 that includes increasing rates.
  • Increasing funding for Children and Family Aids by $6,250,000.
  • Providing an additional $500,000 GPR annually for the child psychiatry consultation program.

WELFARE REFORM

  • Wisconsin Works for Everyone Welfare Reform Legislation.
  • Increases work requirements in the Food Stamp Employment and Training (FSET) program, creates asset restrictions for the W-2, WI Shares, and FoodShare programs, allows public housing authorities to assist in developing employment plans for individuals in public housing, creates a pilot program for periodic payments of the earned income tax credit, requires performance-based payment systems for W-2  and FSET contracts, creates a Pay for Success contracting program for public benefit programs, requires child support compliance for those receiving Medicaid and requires the Department of Health Services to request a waiver for the federal government to create a savings program, similar to a health savings account, in the Medicaid program.
  • Expanding drug screening and testing requirements in state programs.
  • Eliminating the eligibility cliff in the Wisconsin Shares program for child care and increased funding.

BROADBAND

  • Expanding broadband access by investing $41,500,000, an increase of $35,500,000 over the current two-year budget. 
  • Creating a permanent Broadband Expansion Grant Program.
  • Expanding the TEACH program to libraries to provide education for librarians in the use of technology as a means to enhance services provided to library patrons
  • Increasing funding in the TEACH program for infrastructure grants to rural schools for better access to broadband

TRANSPORTATION

  • Providing more than $6 billion for transportation.
  • Investing $86,935,200 into general transportation aids, Local Road Improvement and Bridge Improvement Assistance Programs—providing the largest increase in local aids in 20 years.
  • Providing a significant increase of $63,710,000 for safety and maintenance of our roads.

OPIOIDS

  • Increasing funding for Treatment Alternatives and Diversion Grant Program by $2 million annually.
  • Expanding Wisconsin’s “Good Samaritan Law.”
  • Allowing school bus drivers, employees, and volunteers with proper training to administer naloxone or Narcan to those who are experiencing an overdose.
  • Creating additional positions at the Department of Justice to conduct drug enforcement operations.
  • The creation of three grant programs to be administered by the Departments of Health Services, Children and Families, and Justice targeting drug abuse treatment, prevention, and response.

 

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