WMC Unveils Business Policy Agenda for New Legislative Session

Relief from taxes, lawsuit abuse and onerous regulations top the list of reforms businesses need passed into law in Wisconsin over the next two years to make the state more competitive, WMC announced Wednesday.


The 52-member Wisconsin Manufacturers & Commerce board of directors unanimously approved the business group’s legislative agenda. 


Wisconsin’s a great state and we look forward to working with Governor Doyle and the legislative leaders of both parties to make it the most competitive state in the nation,” said James S. Haney, WMC president.  “We could do so much more for our families if we lowered taxes, curbed lawsuit abuse and cut needless red tape for business.  Clearly, if the Legislature and Governor supported these reforms our families would have better jobs and brighter futures as businesses expand.”


WMC Vice President of Government Relations James A. Buchen said relief from taxes, lawsuit abuse and regulation are the “big three” issues confronting industry and hampering growth.  Many of the lawsuit reforms are needed due to a series of rulings from the Wisconsin Supreme Court that dramatically expanded liability for businesses.


“We need to be looking at cutting the personal income tax to attract and retain top talent to our state,” Buchen said.  “We need to pass litigation reform to protect manufacturers and other businesses from frivolous lawsuits.  And we need to crack down on senseless regulation and red tape that makes Wisconsin non-competitive compared to other states.”


WMC’s full legislative agenda is posted at www.wmc.org. 


The agenda calls for reducing government spending through consolidation of services and public employee benefit reform, state budget reform, personal income tax cuts, and various other tax reforms.


Also, WMC seeks changes in state law to: reduce health care costs through consumer-driven initiatives, reform education through increased educational choices and competition, improvement energy and transportation infrastructure, provide environmental regulation relief, and reform employment law.


“We’re very hopeful that both parties will rally around this agenda as a blueprint for improving Wisconsin’s competitiveness,” Haney said.