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Public Hearings On Walker Budget Get Underway

Joint Finance Committee Plans Four Meetings To Collect Public Input

A poster with the Wisconsin crest that reads Committee on Joint Finance
Shawn Johnson/WPR

The state Legislature’s Joint Finance Committee will hold its first public hearing on Gov. Scott Walker’s state budget Wednesday in the Fox Valley.

The hearing at Brillion High School near Appleton is the first of four being held by the Legislature’s budget committee. The Assembly’s top Democrat, Peter Barca, said when it comes to this budget, there’s no shortage of issues for the public to criticize.

“The more I think people learn about this budget, they’ll know that it has everything to do with the governor’s presidential run and little to do with the heritage of this state,” Barca said.

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Assembly Speaker Robin Vos said Republican lawmakers agree with some pieces of the governor’s budget, but disagree on others.

“It’s our job as a legislature. Now we’re the ones who sit down and say, ‘What do we think about his ideas,’ and negotiate,” said Vos.

These public hearings wrap up next week. Vos said the Joint Finance Committee hopes to start voting on pieces of the budget some time next month.

Editor’s Note: Follow WPR’s Capitol Reporter @SJohnsonWPR for live updates from the hearing.