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As I See It

Legislators should actually debate best use of state surplus



Wisconsin Governor Tony Evers has a plan for spending the state surplus. He wants to use the nearly $4 billion surplus to provide $150 checks to every Wisconsin resident. He has other plans for the money too, offering to boost education spending, among other things. This may or may not be the best use of this surplus. But it is certainly worthy of debate. Unfortunately, such debate is not likely. Evers has called the Legislature to return to Madison on March 8 to hold hearings on his plan to provide tax rebate checks. State law requires lawmakers to heed the call for a special session. But don’t expect anything to get approval, or likely even a discussion. While the law requires lawmakers to convene, it does not require them to actually conduct business. There is no requirement that there be a vote, or even a debate. As a result, our lawmakers are likely to open the hearing, then adjourn with no discussion of the issues the Governor is calling on them to address. We have seen this too many times before, when the Governor called for special sessions to discuss issues related to police reform, gun control or education spending. Each time lawmakers adjourned without even trying to make progress or listen to each other’s ideas. This law governing special sessions should be changed so that lawmakers aren’t required to just meet, but to actually discuss the issue. Otherwise it is just a sham which gets in the way of any progress.

Scott Robert Shaw serves as WIZM Program Director and News Director, and delivers the morning news on WKTY, Z-93 and 95.7 The Rock. Scott has been at Mid-West Family La Crosse since 1989, and authors Wisconsin's only daily radio editorial, "As I See It" heard on WIZM each weekday morning and afternoon.

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1 Comment

1 Comment

  1. Kent Porter

    February 17, 2022 at 5:36 pm

    AS I SEE IT ; $150 checks going into the 2022 elections is a buy your vote , Now that the dumbocrates have crashed and burned your country in the last year , they want to buy your vote , typical , lets keep the money in the state surplus for a rainy day , THE MAYOR OF THENORTHSIDE , KENT

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