Press Release: Gov. Evers Takes Action on Three Bills

Office of Governor Tony Evers
Gov. Evers Takes Action on Three Bills

MADISON — Gov. Tony Evers today vetoed three Republican-backed bills, which, if enacted, would set Wisconsin on a path toward insolvency, leaving the state unable to meet its basic duties to provide adequate funding for programs and services provided by the state, including education, healthcare, child care, public safety, and aid to local governments in the 2025-27 biennium and beyond. If enacted, together, the three bills would reduce revenues by such a margin that it would likely force the state, even with ordinary revenue growth, to partially or fully drain the Budget Stabilization Fund—also known as the state’s ‘rainy day’ fund—just to provide bare minimum inflationary adjustments to key programs in the 2025-27 biennium.

I have been proud to sign several income tax cuts during my time in office, including keeping—and, in fact, well exceeding—my promise to provide a ten percent, middle-class tax cut targeted to Wisconsin’s working families,” noted Gov. Evers in his veto messages. During my first term in office, I proudly signed one of the largest tax cuts in Wisconsin state history, which provided $2 billion in individual income tax relief over the biennium and approximately $1 billion annually going forward. Through this historic tax cut, combined with the tax cuts I signed during my first year in office alone, 86 percent of Wisconsin taxpayers have seen an income tax cut of 15 percent or more, with 2.4 million taxpayers receiving relief. Through the income tax cuts I have already signed into law during my time in office, Wisconsin taxpayers will see $1.5 billion in tax relief annually, primarily targeted to the middle class.

“When we deliver tax relief for the people of Wisconsin—just as we have—it should be real relief aimed at helping Wisconsin’s working families afford rising costs, and it should be responsible and sustainable, ensuring we can keep taxes low now and into the future without causing devastating cuts to priorities like public schools and public safety down the road. Republican members of the Wisconsin State Legislature today once again fail to balance these important obligations.”

The governor’s tax cuts, as enacted, have primarily benefitted middle-class taxpayers, with 65 percent of the relief going to taxpayers with incomes below $150,000 per year. Additionally, the governor’s 2023-25 executive budget proposed a middle-class tax cut plan to provide $1.2 billion in tax relief targeted toward working families, seniors, caregivers, parents, and veterans, among others. Republicans in the Wisconsin State Legislature rejected the plan, instead passing legislation that would have ensured the wealthiest 11 taxpayers in Wisconsin would have received an average tax cut of $1.8 million per year.

In addition to threatening the state’s fiscal health moving forward, if enacted, the bills could result in the state having to repay billions of dollars in federal relief funds it received under the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021. This would completely reverse the progress made in the last five years to improve the state’s fiscal condition even under the best of economic circumstances, jeopardizing critical investments to expand high-speed internet, bolster the state’s workforce, build healthcare infrastructure, support law enforcement and public safety, and address the child care crisis, among other high-priority needs across the state.

The governor’s veto messages are available below.

Veto Message for Assembly Bill 1020

Veto Message for Assembly Bill 1021

Veto Message for Assembly Bill 1022 

An online version of this release is available here.