Wis. Governor Proposes Deep Cuts For Schools

MADISON, Wis. (WCCO/AP) — Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker has released a two-year budget plan that cuts $1.5 billion in aid to public schools and local governments. It also avoids tax or fee increases, employee furloughs or widespread layoffs — if his contentious collective bargaining proposal is put in place.

The Republican governor is refusing to budge on a plan to eliminate most public employee collective bargaining rights. The proposal has stirred a national debate and drawn tens of thousands of protesters to the Capitol.

Walker released a full budget plan Tuesday that he says bolsters his argument for union concessions to deal with a projected $3.6 billion budget shortfall.

He says eliminating most collective bargaining will allow state agencies, local governments and school districts flexibility to react quickly to the cuts he’s proposing.

The effects of such cuts would vary by community.

“The city of Hudson receives, in comparison, a relatively small amount of shared revenue. Historically, about $200,000,” said Devin Willi, Hudson’s city manager.

However, not all cities in Wisconsin receive similar amounts of aid.

“River Falls, for example, receives over $2 million annually,” said Willi.

Democrats are criticizing the proposed cuts. Wisconsin Rep. Tamara Grigsby said the Republican governor is “waging war” on Wisconsin families by trying to cut funding for schools and public assistance programs.

WCCO’s Bruce Hagevik Interviews Devin Willi

(TM and © Copyright 2011 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2011 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)

  • Another Bob

    Say bye to the 5 day work week, 8 hour day and 40 hour weeks.

    Right to work states (no unions) means they can fire you at any time for any or no cause.

    People need to study a little history and see where we would be without unions.

    • John

      I love when I see this one – less than 10% of the population work for a Union and I don’t know many of the other 90% who work more than 5 days a week, or 8 Hr’s a day, or 40 Hr’s a week.

    • Qball

      If your a bad employee you should be fired, there was a time that we needed Unions and this is not the time!

      • gcm

        All union contracts both public and private provide the means for management to discipline and terminate under-performing and/or poor employees. You really have no idea of what you speak of.

    • Tbone

      Show me one teacher that works 40 hours, 5 days or even 8 hours? Then consider summers off where you can work another job or business? What other union allows this? What about all the government holidays? Paid teachers “conferences” at resorts. Above average pay for a “public servant”. A “job for life” once you have tenor, even if your a really bad teacher. Retirement at age 50. “Cadillac” insurance program. My aunt was a teacher and she always told me it was “the best racket you can get yourself into”. I should have listened to her.

      • gcm

        tbone works manual labor and is not very happy. All others must suffer.

      • Drew

        Judging by your writing, it’s not fair to call you out for not knowing what teachers do -you’ve never been to a school. There’s still time for you to pass 4th grade, Tbone!!! Don’t give up!!!!! The difference between tenor and tenure can be tricky. And “your” vs. “you’re” can trip up even the most astute 7 year old.

    • Chris

      Another Bob, Look up your own informaton…
      The right to work only eliminates the required payment of union dues.
      Also, quit exaggerating by saying that conditions will be worse!

    • mnworker

      TBone, you don’t have a clue. Your aunt must have been one of the “bad” teachers everyone is bashing. All of the teachers I know put in a full 8 hours plus. The contracts are taking their prep time away, so the day is full with teaching. So all prep work (grading, preparing class presentations, learning the new curriculum, teaching summer school, advising children, etc.) is all done AFTER they put in a full day.

      I’m really getting tired of people saying that teachers are lazy bums. Really, educate yourself on what really happens in your school system before you mouth off your idiotic opinions. It’s really getting tiring the bashing of middle class workers (THAT R JUST LIKE YOU!)

    • tiredandretired

      Tbone: Your post is full of lies, half truths, and exaggerations. If teaching is such a great deal, why aren’t you jumping on that “gravy train”? We both know why; you lack the talent and fortitude to become qualified, let alone do the job.

    • Student supporter

      Bob, you are correct. Without unions, working conditions would not be what they are now in the US. We owe those unions credit.

      However, don’t you think unions are becoming cumbersome with regards to the educational system? Unions are an essential part to government employment, but I think their actual power should be limited.

      Unions need to focus their efforts on improving the classroom (lower class sizes, increasing student performance) rather than increasing benefits.

    • TBone

      Public School Teachers were Public Servants, and now they Live Like Kings and Queens. Thats why I send my kids to Catholic School, where the Teachers are there because they like Teaching Kids, not because they want a Fat Paycheck and Cadillac Benefits. Many of the kids at our school are children of Public School Teachers, because they want them to get a good education from Teachers that arent in it just for the Money and Cadillac Benefit Plans.

      • Maria L

        Hey Bone – we did the total opposite. 6 years at St. Joe’s and it was time to actually get out and receive an education we decided.
        I think the first couple of years there were great. The student body was great no doubt – guess when one is funding an education one has expectations. And it always helps that they had the ability to cull those they didn’t want of course.
        When the transition was made they were a bit behind to be truthful. We would do it again except make the change to public at a younger age.
        BTW – I think the world of out public school system and cannot say enough positive things about the teachers and staff. Some of the students I would like to kich the their behinds at times. Maybe it’s the age?

      • gcm

        May you work for minimum wage the balance of your pathetic life.

    • jh

      Good bye, slackers. Unions were important…about 90 years ago. Also, goodbye to rotary telephones, the abacus, and lazy workers who caqn’t get ahead on their own merits, like the rest of us.

      • gcm

        Oh yeah, I’ve worked non-union private industry for 20 years and I really see people busting their butts…..not. Who are you trying to kid? If you’re honest with yourself you know that maybe 5% of any work force whether public/private/union or non-union are the cream of the crop and really bust it. Everyone else just thinks they are. The teaching profession is no different.

        • Todd

          gcm, you are correct sir.

  • Freedom

    great another gov thats wants to dumb down the people and take away our rights, if you are behind him maybe you should consider moving to Russia.

    • Tom


      What these conservatives / Tea Party really don’t understand is that Gov Walker can kiss their butt all he wants, but what they don’t realize that you need more than just too kiss the butt of a few too win elections. But what it also tells me that since they hate unions so much and they don’t believe that the “little guy” needs a voice too help them stand up for their rights, that they were brought up too bend over and take one for team every time they are asked to.

      • ohoh

        the “little guy doesn’t make $70,000 a year” and enjoy the benefits of union thugs.
        You aren’t the little guy, you are some of the best paid and under worked in the world.

    • Slim

      What?! You can go because they will invite you with open arms…
      Oh, wait… they are a capitalist country now too!! Well, go anyway…

    • Harry Dilworth

      They must dumb down the system or they will never get elected

    • helper

      Remember this is a guy that was kicked out of Marquette College. He is a loser.

    • Nancy

      Do you have vacation, weekends off, paid insurance? Thank a UNION for that you stup. Of course you may very well be on welfare to think people in the union are paid too much…….or have a low paying job because you are not in a union job, or are in a High paying job and do not see the need for others to get ahead. Sick Tom, you are sick

  • John Skolte

    Idiot!! Unions make concessions agreeing to performance increases in exchange for wage/benefit concessions by management. If pay for performance is so great, why has management systematically gotten rid of it in situations where it was part of a union contract. I was in such a situation and management kept finding ways to raise the production standards, making more and more difficult to earn any “production pay”.

    • Charlie

      Of course, John, welcome to the real world!
      There is a competitive need for ongoing efficiency improvement…
      That is what the unions do not get and cause the offshoring of jobs…
      But, public workers and the state do not “compete”, so it is rigged!
      They just keep asking for more and more and more… to what end?

  • Chris

    If unions weren’t forcibly collecting millions of dollars for the Dems would they still be concerned bout the unions rights???

    • Wesly

      If Koch was not giving Walker and his ilk millions of dollars, would the Wisconsin Republicans be concerned about decreasing corporate taxes? And yes the Democrats would still care about worker’s rights as they have tried to be the party for the working people union or not. Read up on workplace safety. Would there be anyone who cared about it without the Democrats? Do you even care about worker’s rights? Study up a little bit if you are a working person to what you would be paid without unions

  • Carl

    Scott Walker was elected to do what he is doing. Also the Both Houses went to the Republicans who are doing what they said .I hope Washington has the stomach to do its job.
    That is what the people here want . Polls are just that and subject to error . Move on and let us get are budget under control .

    • Mike

      Carl-When are going to make your sacrifice? Since you and your ilk want to help impact the budget and race to the bottom, why don’t you start pushing for minimum wage for everyone, including yourself? That way, will all be the same………….

      • Ryan K

        I support Carl and I work at minimum wage. Unions are a joke. I support Gov. Walker we need the budget under control. We don’t deserve everything. I live within my budget I have for many years. I don’t have credit cars and car payments. Think if it this way if we all make the same wages like unions want then are money really will be worthless. We need lower wages in this country to get prices under control. Unions are greedy and ignorant.

      • GCM

        RYAN K is a liar as he couldn’t even pay for an online account on minimum wage unless he’s living with mommy and daddy.

    • william

      There is a difference between holding a line on a budget and workers being able to collectively bargain.

  • Dave

    The situation we are in is the result of “no new taxes” battle cry that has been going on in this country for the last decade to protect the greed of the wealthy. If you take a million dollars income and spread over 20 people making 50k/yr, we each pay a fair share in taxes. You take the same million dollars income going to one person and instead of paying their fair share of the money in taxes to maintain our society, they hire tax laywyers and accountants to find loop holes so they don’t have to pay as much tax. This produces a huge shortfall in revenue. I say do a straight tax on income. You make X, your tax is X % period. This would change our situation greatly..and eliminate the IRS, cutting a huge government cost.

    • Chris

      Dave, That is great and I agree with that…
      Simplifying the tax code would clean it up and result in more real tax revenue…
      Maybe MN’s Dayton will even get his “fair share” taxed a little bit!

    • Ralph

      IRS would still need to monitor business and self employed

  • Yikes

    How soon before he and his Band of Idiots, vote for themselves a pay raise or diem increase?
    Any chance he gets into the pensions and spiffs for his croonies (both parties) that they get?
    If you desire to make money and lifetime security just play the political puppet game.
    Wisconsin may be headed back to the cotton fields. Make it snow fields. Drink up Wisconsin and load up your rifles as soon as he slices apart the cops unions and such …. you’ll need them ;-)

    • Chris

      Yikes, you are so over the top rediculous…
      Speaking of rackets, politics and unions have always gone hand in hand…
      Also, that is just speculation that the Gov would have intentions to raise their own $$$ and I highly doubt it… Let’s stick to the facts as you are really stretching for more scare tactics!

      • DANO

        I guess walker taking money from the Koch bro’s isn’t a racket either huh>? As for dues, we are glad to pay them. At least we don’t lay down like you do. You really need to get an education. OH, i forgot, you don’t believe in people getting a good education. I guess that is why your stupidity is only exceded by your ignorance..
        Did you make thru the 8th grade?

  • College Professor

    its funny how the people that didnt get college degrees are calling those that did “idiots”.

    • tiredandretired

      Yeah, it’s always interesting how so many of the “smart guys” end up working for the “dumb guys.”

      • UrnoProf

        How do you know if “THOSE” people have a college degree or not?? You friggen idiot

    • tom

      just because you have a college degree does not mean you know something. the only thing a college degree shows is you paid way more for a piece of paper than the avg joe would have. You are still going to earn as much as the reg worker in the real world. college degree=10.00 warehouse job, without degree=9.75 warehouse job.

      • Mark

        College Degree = Increased Critical Thinking Skills = Not Letting Republicans Con You Into Voting Against Yourself


    What is Walker’s personal health care & pension plan as a governor?

    We oughta know this; and is his taking any cuts to help the budget maybe he should go three days without pay like others did under Doyle.

    • NRA Guy

      They shall never openly offer this up. You know – typical double speal and all. ;-)


    It seems the Republican Senate is buckling…….Rumor has it from NBC….They have a Senator who is trying to convert 2 more.if 3 go to the Dem side.the bill is totally DEFEATED.

    • mnworker

      Best news I’ve heard all day

    • Slim

      Yeah, sure…. How about them protesters?
      We are so impressed by the kids having a party in the capitol…
      How many union workers and teachers are even left there?

  • Incredulous1

    Put on a flag lapel pin and help those in the corporate board rooms and you too can become a darling.

    • Charlie

      Can you translate that for us?
      You must have a point to make here, but I don’t get it…
      Also, aren’t we talking about public union employees here?
      Since when do they have corporate board rooms in State government?
      Looks like one heck of a stretch again… give it up already!

  • TLC

    Forgive me, but isn’t it the Republicans that keep saying that we shouldn’t have our children pay for our debt? If that’s the case, then what is taking the money from the schools doing???
    I think that if our children have to pay for our debts, it’s better to have them pay when they are adults rather than when they are still children.

  • Mark

    You wont be so GO GO Walker when your kids get a poor education due to extreme classroom sizes, No extracurricular activities, or you need to spend more of your own money for school supplies because the schools cant afford to purchase them. Then you can whine about how the kids have nothing to do, or all of the sports programs have been cancelled. There is so much more to this then you think.

  • tiredandretired

    I find it interesting that Tea Partiers and other Republican corporate shills are hating on public workers, based on their expectation that pay should be the same for all. Isn’t that socialism?

    • Ginger Shepla

      Who said pay should be the same for all? I think you misunderstand that public workers get paid from taxes collected. In order to keep their pay and benefits as high as they are, taxes are going to have to go up. So, the public workers are just fine taking from everyone else for their own selfish desires. Pretty sad.

      • tiredandretired

        When dairy prices go up, do you demand that farmers take a pay cut? They are highly subsidized, as are most private sector employers. We all pay each others’ wages; pull your head out of the abyss.

      • Chris

        “Most private sector employers are heavily subsidized” ARE YOU SERIOUS?!




      • gcm

        Ginger Shepla is smart like floor

      • gcm

        Yes Chris the tool, most everyone is subsidized in one way or another…….think tax breaks for hiring, cash for clunkers, farm subsidies. Oh, and unless you live in a major metropolitan area you are fully subsidized by the taxpayers.

  • tiredandretired

    Gov. Wanker to reveal ultimate intentions? LOL! He’s lied to us at every turn; why should we believe him now?

  • Ben O.

    Another great day at ‘cco in the censurship department … again.
    It’s becoming quite the joke with all the censureship, were posts here 30 minutes ago are now gone. Yet others more pointed remain.
    Aaaaah – KARE11. You now get my boob tube time. :)
    To bad the Twins jumped ship …. left for the enemy way back on radio too. Is the great neighbor losing it?

  • Tom

    Right on Walker

    Another typical conservative comment!

  • Bob

    I am retired-worked all my life for companies that had no unions. They were able to make financial decisions as needed to keep their companies healthy and keep my job intact. What I learned was that if you are a good employee, you don’t have to worry about unions (or pay them and keep union leaders in jobs). The free enterprise system works without unions if given a chance. I have a friend from West Virginia that said unions there did such a good job of negotiating wages and benefits that many mining companies went out of business and they now have a lot of unemployment.

    • Chuck

      So true… Thanks for sharing!

  • The Greatest, Not Greediest, Generation


    Your post is one of ignorance.. You want to see a teacher who works more than 40 hours a week? Walk into any public school in the state!!! Speaking of that – when was the last time you spent a day in a public school? I can guess the answer, and all of your assertions are pure guesses, too.

    • Slim

      Well, you got the “greediest” part right!

  • helper

    He’s such a pawn to the large corporations. I can’t believe republicans are so gullible to support him. By the time they figure out what’s going on the wool will have been completely pulled over their eyes.

    • Charlie

      Helper, What the heck are you referring to again?

      We have already set you straight on the bills that have been passed so far…

      Resulting in no Corp tax breaks and only credits for jobs created…

      And we have clarified that we are talking about public union employees, right?

      So stop with the exaggerations and made up stuff that even you know is false!

      • gcm

        Let’s see, a tax credit for hiring an employee doesn’t qualify as a tax break? What is your crazy logic on this one?

  • PK

    My husband and several friends are teachers. They work 40+ hours! They take home work, grade tests and papers and do lessons plans. They conduct parent/teacher conferences, attend school functions and are available to parents before and after school. They go to school in the summer to better themselves which enriches the students more. They also teach summer school. My husband only has about 2 weeks off in the summer (in between regular class sessions and summer school). Pull your head out of the sand!

    The scary thing is this bill has more than just the attack on Unions in it. It also enables the State to sell off precious land to anyone they want. Can you say Koch Brothers? You talk about the Unions contributing to the Dems? What about the billionaires contributing to the GOP? The Koch Bros contributed to Walkers campaign and are an integral part in this whole scheme. Why do you think Walker was so forthcoming with info when he got punked by someone pretending to be David Koch? He fully intends to sell WI land to those creeps for cheap so they can continue to fill his coffers! Read the between the lines WI constituents! The middle class is about to go extinct!

    • Chris

      Oh stop it already!

      What color is the sky in your world as you are dreaming…

      Is everything a conspriracy for you?

      That must be why the unions (public and private) seem OK to you…

      • gcm

        Chris you are so bright it’s scary. If you hate private unions as well and love big business I’m sure you’re very pleased with all of your contributions to the Airline and Auto industry bankrupted pensions. Since the govt allowed them all to file bankruptcy to eliminate their pension obligations you (I might be assuming here), I and all other taxpayers now get to pay for those pensions via the Pension Guaranty Corp. So not only did the workers that toiled their whole career get screwed out of a contractual obligation but so did the taxpayers. Chalk another one up for big business.

  • Richard

    I guess, Wisconsin will have to go back to what it does best, drink beer and cut the cheese.

    • badteach

      LOL, the teachers might as well drink beer and cut the cheese as they are cuttin class and making the students pay for lost days of school. Gee wiz I thought that is why they became teachers ~ they are to teach and not skip school. BAD BAD teachers in Wi.
      Oh boo hoo, they will have a pay cut!! Its a sign of the times and you don’t wanna be left out now do ya!! Stop whinning!!

  • Murph

    If he keeps this up,the courts will be able to “review” his interview with the fake Koch brother! Walker will lose HIS job!

  • Holysmokes!

    For the best article I have read up to this point about the teachers union in Wisconsin, you should go to kstp radio web site. Look up Joe Soucheray and check out his Feb. 28th show. There is an article listed from a Robert Costrell, who will give you more information about why collective bargaining in Milwaukee’s teachers union is one awful situation, unless you are a teacher. It really opened my eyes, and should make every taxpayer in Wisconsin irate. I am sure this situation could be the same here in MN. Read it, and educate yourselves as to why Walker and his conservative partners need to do something about this.

    • Joel M

      Long time GL’er here myself Holysmokes. I like Joe. Yet – he’s also what I will call, politely, tunnel visioned. He has an agenda. He’s getting more and more to the right. I suspect it is in an attempt to garner more market share, whcih have slipped there big time … it really doesn’t matter to me. Over the 20 years or more I lhave istened to him dating to SportsTalk way back – it’s always been the same. He dislikes unions, mostly dislikes teachers, and has his slant on all. And care is taken in the screening process. Won’t go into how I know that now ;-)
      That said I still often listen but with an open mind knowing that it’s just his and other like minds that spin it

      • Holysmokes!

        Hi Joel, Thanks for a response. I really recommend you check it out. It is from a guy who really seems to have his facts straight. This Costrell is a recognized expert in his field. Hopefully it will at least give us all some insight as to why the taxpayers are up in arms.

      • why you should never trust media

        my gads – go check out another station for the “experts” they all have doing the spin dance they want you to dance to.
        take all, slice and dice it apart and then maybe part truth and fact shows up. and there is no such thing as absolutes in the real world other than we all die at some point

      • Charlie

        So can you imagine for just a second if he is on the right track and you are not?

        What does that look and feel like to you? Pretty ugly…

        So let him try to fix the problem and get us moving…

        You are like a little kid that doesn’t want to take his medicine!

  • Dave

    I’m no fan of unions, but I do believe that employees have the right to collective bargain. The budget issues in Wisconsin are not the cause of unions, and for the governor to say he cannot negotiate with the collective bargaining agreement is bogus. Everyone knows there is a need for cuts in budgets, and everyone will need to cut their budgets. This governor is obviously looking for a national political office. If we want to stop the budget issues, we need to stop giving out the corporate welfare given to major corporations who continually move the jobs from the US to overseas. These corporations continue to pay minimal taxes, and claim they are paying way too much in taxes. What the businesses want is tax free, which basically they are paying virtually tax free in revenue. The taxes most major corporations report paying is mainly the taxes they collect from their employees. If businesses want to contribute to politicians then I say they should be taxed as an individual, since corporations are considered individuals. See how they like paying the wage scale that their employees have to pay.

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