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Author: Wisconsin Budget Project

Foxconn one year later: 8 lessons from the rushed legislation for massive subsidies

September 18 marked the one-year anniversary of the bill authorizing massive subsidies for a Foxconn plant in southeast Wisconsin. Although we still don’t know many specifics about the plant that will be built and the new jobs that will result, we have learned a lot in the last year, and the current picture is considerably different than what we had been led to believe a year ago. Here are eight significant things we have learned since the Governor pushed the huge subsidies through the legislature in great haste last year: 1) The plant will be very different from what...

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New poll finds Wisconsin voters choose education over tax cuts

A new poll found that Wisconsin residents believe that excellent public schools are important to the state’s success, and are concerned that recent changes have harmed public schools. Cutting taxes ranks relatively low among voter concerns, the poll showed. Voters all across the state place a great deal of value on Wisconsin’s schools, with nearly half (49%) naming K-12 education as among the two most important issues facing the state, according to the August 2018 poll from Marquette University Law School. In contrast, only 13% of voters identified tax cuts as among the most important issues. When presented with...

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The unsustainable habit of rewarding corporations that cut local jobs

Wisconsin keeps paying more to profitable corporations to subsidize manufacturing, while demanding less in return. In fact, the Governor’s proposal to subsidize Kimberly Clark jobs would pay that corporation roughly $7 million per year over the next 15 years — if they agree not to cut jobs by more than 7%. Compounding the problems, the proposed deal would allow the company to back out at any time, without giving up any of the generous subsidies it has received. Although the proponents of the proposed subsidies refer to them as “tax credits,” that is misleading because manufacturers already receive a...

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Revenue from Wisconsin’s new sales tax to disproportionately benefit wealthy residents

Just a few months from now, Wisconsin will begin collecting an additional $10 million per month from sales taxes on e-commerce, and state officials plan to use that revenue for an income tax cut that will disproportionately benefit wealthy state residents. The 2% of Wisconsinites with the highest incomes will get an estimated 21% of the planned tax cut. Rather than going ahead with a tax swap that once again tilts the tax code in favor of the wealthiest Wisconsinites, state lawmakers should examine other options, such as investing the new revenue into public schools, which have taken major...

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In contrast to Wisconsin lawmakers, citizens value public schools over tax cuts

Wisconsin voters would much rather increase spending on public schools than reduce property taxes, according to a recent poll. Yet Wisconsin lawmakers have taken the state in a different direction by choosing to cut taxes, particularly for the wealthy and well-connected, rather than restore budget cuts made to public schools. A new analysis by the Wisconsin Budget Project shows how lawmakers have siphoned billions of dollars away from school districts and redirected those resources towards tax cuts instead. The results of the most recent Marquette University poll clearly show that Wisconsin residents believe that excellent public school are critical...

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Survey finds Wisconsin voters still not sold on value of Foxconn payouts

President Trump joined Governor Walker on June 28 for the groundbreaking of the Foxconn plant, a project that is set to cost billions of dollars in subsidies from the state government. However, that price seems too high for many Wisconsin voters. According to a new poll from Marquette University Law School, a majority of Wisconsinites believe the state is providing too much government assistance to Foxconn, and that businesses in their area will not benefit. People who live outside the major population areas in the state are especially unlikely to believe that the billions the state is funneling to...

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