DOR Bill Changes Timing of Calculating CPI for ERP Purposes

Both the Senate and the Assembly are meeting on the floor tomorrow. One of the bills of interest to municipalities that both houses are scheduled to take up is AB 2/SB 2, a package of changes to laws and programs administered by the Department of Revenue (DOR). The League supports the bill because it changes the date DOR must calculate CPI for the Expenditure Restraint Program from September to August, which better aligns with the timing of local budgeting.

The bill also requires all members of boards of review to complete DOR sanctioned training each year, except that only one member needs to attend training in-person each year. Current law requires that at least one member of the board of review attend DOR training within the two-year period beginning on the date of the board's first meeting.

It is uncertain whether Governor Evers will sign this bill into law once it reaches his desk. That is because last week the Republican controlled Joint Finance Committee amended the bill to allow businesses to deduct from their state income taxes the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) funds they received in 2020 from the federal COVID relief legislation. Congress made the PPP loans tax deductible at the federal level late last year. Eliminating state taxes on PPP loans would cost the state $540 million over three years.

Read a LFB memo explaining the amendment to AB 2/SB 2 here.

Governor Introducing 2021-2023 State Budget Tomorrow

Governor Evers is set to deliver his state budget address tomorrow at 7:00. The details of his 2021-2023 state budget proposal will be released shortly before his speech. League staff will publish a Capitol Buzz tomorrow night summarizing features of the budget affecting municipalities. Over the last several weeks, the Governor has announced various policy highlights from his recommended state budget, including a provision allowing municipalities over 30,000 in population and counties to seek permission from the voters in a referendum to impose a .5 percent local sales tax. Read more about the local sales tax proposal here.

Reforming Wisconsin's Mental Health Emergency Detention Process

Last week, a coalition of municipal law enforcement, hospitals, medical professionals, county and state health services, mental health advocates, and legal professionals announced recommendations to reform Wisconsin’s emergency detention process and increase the availability of behavioral health services.
Read the media release from the coalition here.
Read the recommendations here.