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Senate Majority Leader Predicting Tough 2017 State Budget

Fitzgerald Tells County Leaders It Will Be As Difficult As Current Budget

Scott Fitzgerald
Shawn Johnson/WPR

The Republican leader of the state Senate says he expects the next state budget will be as difficult as the last one.

Speaking at a Madison forum hosted by the Wisconsin Counties Association on Tuesday, Senate Majority Leader Scot Fitzgerald spoke in dire terms about the budget that lawmakers will be dealt in 2017.

“I think this next state budget is going to be just as rough as this past one,” he said.

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Fitzgerald said that given what he’d been told by the Legislature’s budget office, he didn’t expect revenues to grow fast enough to keep pace with demands on spending.

“The economy is not going to continue to soar, it’s going to lag,” said Fitzgerald. “And as a result of that — that’s what I lose sleep over. Because those are very difficult decisions.”

This past budget included a $250 million cut in the University of Wisconsin’s budget and continued borrowing to pay for transportation.