IN THE NEWS
Investing in Wisconsin; Fund connects investors with projects across state
(Opportunity Zones Fund)
Martin said the reason for having one fund for the whole state was so that the 60 municipalities in 44 counties can work together to raise capital instead of competing for it.
“Rather than hearing 60 different messages about why you should invest in an individual city, this is one way for us to make it an easy clearing house for investors in Wisconsin to be able to make one investment across multiple communities,” said Martin. “We can raise more capital together than we can competing against each other.”
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Limits On Growing Property Taxes
We examine how local governments across Wisconsin are responding to state laws that limit raising property taxes without voter support.
Listen to Curt Witynski on WPR...
Car registration fees range from $85 to $253 next year
"Curt Witynski, deputy director of the League of Wisconsin Municipalities, said local governments adopt wheel taxes “because their transportation needs continue to be greater than the revenue they have available under property taxes and state aids.”
Overall, he said, general transportation aid for cities and villages “is funded at levels only slightly higher than 2010.”
Some Republican legislators have sponsored bills requiring that voters approve a referendum before a local government can levy a wheel tax.
Bad idea, Witynski said:
“The Legislature should continue to allow locally elected officials the discretion to make this policy decision. Local voters can take action at the spring elections, if they are dissatisfied with the enactment or implementation of a local vehicle registration fee.”
Counties do not have to pass a referendum to levy a 0.5% sales tax surtax, Witynski noted.
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What Exactly Is Our "Snowball" Ordinance? #Wausau
Police Spending Rises, Staffing Levels Fall
Police staffing levels were hotly debated during recent budget deliberations in Milwaukee and Madison. We analyzed a decade of data for Wisconsin’s 10 largest cities to determine if these communities were facing similar pressures and found police spending and violent crime rates have risen, but compared to a decade ago there are fewer police officers per capita in seven of the 10 cities.
Read the Wisconsin Policy Forum's analysis...
Paul Fanlund: Turning the page on the politics of resentment
“Basically, the idea is that local government is kind of the smallest, leanest form and oftentimes doesn’t have either the bandwidth or the capacity to do what it needs to do,” Luter said.
“If you know anything about local government you know how essential the services are that you rely on (it) to provide. Things like school, trash pickup, water quality.
“They basically come to UW-Madison and say: ‘We need some expertise here, need some extra hands there. Is there a way that you could be a thought partner with this on some kind of project?’
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