Hi, Scott Walker here.
The state of our state is strong.
More people were employed in our state this last year than at any point in the history of Wisconsin. Unemployment levels are the lowest we’ve seen in more than 15 years. And the percentage of people working in Wisconsin? Well, it’s one of the highest of any state in the country.
We are working and winning for Wisconsin.
As we look forward towards our goals for 2017 and beyond, here are a few of our top priorities:
We will increase funding for K-12 public education and address some of the unique challenges rural schools face, such as transportation costs, broadband access, and declining enrollment.
We will continue to lower the tax burden so property and income taxes will be lower in 2018 than they were in 2010.
We plan to build upon our historic four-year University of Wisconsin tuition freeze by actually cutting – that’s right – cutting tuition for all undergraduate students at all UW colleges in our 2017-2019 state budget.
To address the needs of schools, businesses, and homes in rural Wisconsin, we’ve provided an additional $35.5 million investment in our Broadband Expansion Grant Program, which will bring our total broadband investment to $52 million. I call on the legislature to act quickly to provide this much-needed service to the people of rural Wisconsin.
We will focus on the safety and maintenance of Wisconsin’s transportation system by providing local governments with the largest increase in transportation aids since the 1990s and providing more money than ever before for state highway rehabilitation. We can do all of this without increasing the gas tax or the vehicle registration fee.
And we will help find rewarding work for all of our citizens by becoming a leader when it comes to welfare reform. You see, our biggest challenge is not creating jobs, it’s finding people to fill them. We went from a focus on “jobs, jobs, jobs” to “workforce, workforce, workforce.” This is my top priority for 2017 and beyond.
The future of our state is bright, but our work is far from done.
As always, we’d love to hear from you directly about the issues most important to you. In fact, we’re hosting another Facebook Live session next Tuesday, January 17 at 4:00 p.m. Visit Facebook.com/GovernorScottWalker to post a question and make sure you join me as I answer your questions live next Tuesday.
Together, we can move Wisconsin forward.