Rep. Callahan: Supports responsible state budget

Rep. Calvin Callahan 
(608) 237-9135

[Madison, WI] – Representative Calvin Callahan (R-Tomahawk) was proud to support Senate Bill (SB) 70, the 2023-2025 State Budget. After a months-long process of hearing from constituents, holding in-district listening sessions, advocating for the 35th Assembly District, and ultimately working towards a fiscally responsible budget that ALL Wisconsinites can benefit from, the final budget passed by the Assembly reflects the priorities important to the state, without forgetting the hardworking folks in the Northwoods.

“There is a lot to be proud of in this biennium’s state budget, including the largest tax cut in state history – over $4.4 billion,” stated Rep. Callahan. “A $3.5 billion income tax cut targeting the middle class will average $537 per filer each year, representing an average cut of over 15%.  Additionally, our budget, along with the shared revenue bill recently passed and signed into law (2023 Wisconsin Act 12), eliminates the personal property tax, which is a huge win for Main Streets, small businesses, and local governments throughout Wisconsin. And finally, $600 million is being invested towards reducing the property tax burden.”

Assembly Republicans have listened to their local elected officials about the need for more funding. Act 12 provides at least 20% in additional shared revenue funding for municipalities, among other items, and ties state aid to the sales tax – meaning as the state grows, so will the funding for the municipalities. The funding for Act 12 is provided in the state budget. In addition, local roads have always been a priority, as well. That is why this biennium’s budget includes crucial investments in our transportation infrastructure. The Republican proposal invests in the state highway rehabilitation program by $10 million more and local road aids by $130 million more than what the governor proposed, while bonding $88 million less.

“I fought hard for transportation funding for my district and throughout the Northwoods to ensure folks can travel safely to their destinations, whether it’s for commuting, farming, or tourism,” continued Rep. Callahan. “I was glad to see the final budget include one of my budget motions to increase funding for the county highway aids program by 25%, which will help communities maintain and repair the portions of state highway in their jurisdictions. Recently, Act 13 was signed into law creating an Agricultural Road Improvement Grant Program (ARIP) that will help to improve local roads and bridges in rural parts of the state, like the 35th. The budget provides $150 million for this program, and will be a huge benefit to our farmers and residents in the district.”

The governor’s initial budget proposal included many items that made up a liberal wish list. The items from the governor’s original proposal that Republicans removed include:

· $2 billion in tax hikes,

· Over 800 new government employees,

· New gun control laws,

· Marijuana legalization,

· Repeal of Act 10,

· Creation of a new agency dedicated to diversity, equity, and inclusion,

· New benefits for illegal immigrants, including in-state tuition and driver licenses, and

· Loosening election laws.

The budget is now headed to the governor for his consideration.