Dear Friends,

This week, Governor Walker signed two crucial bills for our economy.  On Monday, he signed the Foxconn bill.  And yesterday, he signed the state budget.  You can read more about those bills below.

The secret is out.  The city of Mequon made  Money Magazine's Top 100 Best Places to Live in America!  The article has high praise for Mequon stating: "Beyond its low crime and tax rates, Mequon offers a range of diverse recreational, economic, and cultural options."  Congratulations!

As always, if you have any ideas on how to improve our great state, please do not hesitate to contact me by email at  Sen.Darling@legis.wi.gov or 608-266-5830.   

On Wisconsin!

Governor Walker Signs Budget

On Thursday, I attended the Governor's bill signing of the state budget at Tullar Elementary in Neenah.  This is a great budget that lowers taxes and delivers the largest investment in state history for our schools.

I want to thank Governor Walker for giving us an excellent framework to work with.   I also want to thank all of the members of the Joint Committee on Finance, especially my Assembly Co-Chair John Nygren, for all of the hard work on the budget. We had a great team and delivered a great product.

When the budget was in the  Joint Committee on Finance, 113 of 188 substantive motions were approved on bipartisan votes. Despite our differences, we worked together to help move our great state forward.

You can read even more about the budget below.

Senate Sends Budget to Governor
Senator Darling speaks in favor of the State Budget Plan

Late last Friday, the State Senate approved the 2017-19 budget.  They say "good things come to those who wait." I'm happy to report that despite the delay, we are delivering a budget that benefits everyone in our great state.  This is an outstanding budget and one of the best I've ever worked on. 

When it comes down to it, budgets are about priorities.  Throughout the budget, we made taxpayers our number one priority.   Taxpayers will see $11.6 billion in tax relief.  The average property tax bill this year will be lower than it was in 2010 and 2014.  This budget doesn't just cut taxes, it begins the phase out the personal property and eliminates the forestry mill, the alternative minimum, and the soda water tax!  Three taxes, gone.

We are continuing to make it more affordable to live, work, and retire in Wisconsin.  We've also worked very hard to change our state's reputation to job creators.  Back in 2010, we were in the bottom ten states for business according to CEO Magazine.  Now we are in the top ten.   Without careful budgeting and major reforms, we wouldn't be in position to land companies like Foxconn, Haribo, and IKEA.
 
With those major employers choosing to locate in Wisconsin, we are making major investments in worker training so our workforce is ready for the family-supporting careers that are heading our way.  By continuing the tuition freeze, we are keeping our outstanding UW System schools affordable.      
 
This budget makes the largest real dollar investment in K-12 education ever. That means real money going into classrooms.  We are giving more parents control over their children's education by letting them choose the best options for their child.
   
I'm particularly proud of the investment we are making in protecting our most vulnerable citizens.  Wisconsin will soon be the only state in the nation to end the wait list for long-term supports for disabled children.  We are investing more than $40 million in wage increases for Personal Care and Family Care workers. More working mothers will able to take promotions because we are eliminating the fiscal cliff in Wisconsin shares.
 
The budget will help shield taxpayers from any economic uncertainty. With $284 million in our rainy day fund, we are setting aside around $200 million in the ending balance of the budget. 
 
This is a great budget that will continue to keep our great state headed in the right direction.  On Wisconsin!

Governor Signs Foxconn Bill
This week, I was honored to attend the bill signing for the Foxconn legislation at  Gateway Technical College in Sturtevant.   

This is an important step for the future of Wisconsin and our economy.  Foxconn will be a transformational $10 billion investment by the company, bringing next generation manufacturing and 13,000 high-tech, family-supporting jobs to our state.
Around the 8th...
I had a great time at the Thiensville Fire Department Public Safety Day last weekend!
______________________________________________________

Also last weekend, Rep. Jim Ott and I attended the Spread Your Wings Walk at Nicolet High School. The event honors the memory of Michael Janasik who was killed by a drunk driver when he was 18. The walk benefits the Nicolet High School basketball program.
Senator Alberta Darling | Sen.Darling@legis.wi.gov | 1-800-863-1113| http://darling.senate.wisconsin.gov
See what's happening on our social sites: