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Walker says budget forecast doesn’t negate need for cuts

Gov. Scott Walker testifies on Capitol Hill in Washington on April 14 before the House Oversight Committee and Government Reform Committee on balancing state budgets in a tough economy. Walker said new-found money in the budget doesn't change his mind on his union law restricting the collective bargaining rights of most public employees. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)

MADISON, Wis. (AP) — Gov. Scott Walker says an improved budget forecast for Wisconsin doesn’t change his position that state workers should be forced to pay more for health insurance and pension benefits.

Walker said Wednesday he also doesn’t think the additional $636 million in revenue expected to come into the state over the next two years should be used to reduce more than $1 billion in cuts he proposed to schools and local governments.

Instead, Walker said the money should be used to pay down the state’s debt. He said he will work with Republican legislative leaders on what can be done with any money left over, but Walker said he doesn’t intend to reverse position on restricting collective bargaining rights.

That law remains in limbo pending a court challenge.

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3 comments

  1. Karen Jeffries

    Scott Walker’s “cut-cut-cut” mantra doesn’t quite make it to his lavish three-story 13-bathroom seven-bedroom seven-fireplace seven-servant 21,000-square-foot $1.63 million 34-room taxpayer-supported mansion on a 3.7 acre estate, peasants, so Walker’s phony preaching just doesn’t quite ring true.

    It’s hard to set a good example when you live in a mansion paid for by others who never get to taste the culinary delights from Walker’s fulltime personal chef or smell the flowers that Walker’s fulltime gardener fertilizes (Walker’s not the only fertilizer spreader in Madison, you know) or the fulltime custodian or the fulltime mansion “director” who admits there’s also a flower arranger, a housekeeper and other waitstaff on public-paid salary, all salaries combined totalling $262,500 per year, according to the state Legislative Fiscal Bureau, or $1.06 million over the four years that he’d be reigning over us peons, barring recall.

    Rhode Island doesn’t have a mansion. In Idaho, Gov. C.L. Otter refused his monthly housing allowance in March 2009 when he moved into a 7,400-square-foot house. In California, there’s no residence or housing allowance. There was a governor’s mansion there until 1967, when Ronald Reagan moved out after three months.

  2. Irwin Fletcher

    You seriously think the governor’s residence should be an issue? Since to bring it up time and time again, I guess so.

    According to Bloomberg, Walker’s measures are having very positive affect on the State’s credit rating and thus reducing financing our current debt.

    http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2011-05-11/wisconsin-borrowing-costs-plunge-from-january-sale-municipal-credit.html

    Kudo’s Mr. Walker. Keep up the good work!

  3. Mr. Irwin Fletcher, for you or anyone with similar political sympathies to just dismiss Scott Walker’s lavish living expenditures as you do is very telling.

    Scott Walker’s true character is so very evident here.

    Scott Walker, who built his whole governorship campaign around constantly repeating “we’re broke” to the cameras, instead, like some sort of wealthy shiek refuses to allow any sort of state-government austerity program to affect his own lavish taxpayer-supported private lifestyle.

    Scott Walker’s penchant for missing opportunities is so evident here.

    Scott Walker could have knocked one out of the ballpark and played the public-hero by announcing that he’d be mothballing the mansion along with its high-priced maintenance staff and related costs “until economic conditions improve”, and then taken a modest home or apartment somewhere near the Capitol.

    That Scott Walker didn’t think of pulling such a public-relations coup, which would have forced grumbling respect from even his harshest critics, is proof of Scott Walker’s utter bumbling.

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