November 17, 2011
For Immediate Release
Contact: Cullen Werwie, 608-267-7303
Madison—Today Governor Walker delivered the weekly radio address that is titled “Saving Taxpayers & Protecting Schools”.
Hi this is Scott Walker.
Earlier this year a 60 year old custodian sent me a note about his property taxes. He wrote about how his taxes were skyrocketing and how he feared that when he retired his property tax bill would force him to find a part-time job just to live in his home.
Well taxpayers like that custodian got welcome news this week. The state released the latest property tax information for Wisconsin homeowners and for the first time in years it showed the school tax levy is actually going down. All told the state’s total school tax levy went down by nearly $50 million this year.
That’s great news because many of the homeowners who have been struggling to pay their bills will have some more money in their pockets at the end of the year. In fact, 269 school districts across the state have a property tax levy the same or lower than last year’s. To put that property tax decline in perspective, it’s important to know that over the last five years, the average tax levy has gone UP by $181 million each year. That means our reforms, not only curbed the growth of property taxes by over $180 million, but they will actually put more money in the hands of taxpayers.
And the best news is that because of our reforms, we’re able to keep providing our kids a great education while still protecting property taxpayers. Wisconsin’s student to teacher ratio this year is 13.5 to one, which is much better than the national average. The majority of schools are maintaining or lowering class sizes.
The lower property taxes combined with quality schools is just one of the examples of the positive results of our reforms. We’ll continue our work to improve education and protect taxpayers in the days ahead.
The state has partnered with the Wisconsin Broadcasters Association to produce and distribute brief radio address once a week. Audio files and a written transcript of this radio address can be accessed on http://www.wi-broadcasters.org and http://walker.wi.gov/section.asp?linkid=1761&locid=177. To download an mp3 file you can visit, right click the radio address link and click “save link as.”