Highlights of the two-year state budget approved by the Wisconsin Senate on Friday, more than two months after the spending plan was due on July 1. It now heads to Gov. Scott Walker for his signature:
K-12 SCHOOLS: State spending on K-12 schools would increase by $639 million over the next two years, a 5.9 percent increase. Low-spending districts would get a boost and wealthier families could qualify for taxpayer-funded private school vouchers. Per-student aid would increase by $200 this year and $204 next year for all schools, at a cost of about $505 million. Democrats argued that the latest proposal wouldn’t do enough to help public schools while spending millions more for private schools in the choice program. Enrollment in a voucher program for students with disabilities would double in 2018, growing by an estimated 250 students, under a variety of changes making it easier to participate.
HIGHER EDUCATION: Tuition across the University of Wisconsin system would be frozen this year and next while increasing funding by $36 million, two years after their budget was cut by $250 million. UW would have to monitor teaching workloads and develop policies rewarding those who teach more than average. All UW campuses would be barred from requiring that only faculty members or those granted tenure be considered when hiring chancellors or president of the system.
INCOME TAXES: The budget committee rejected Walker’s proposal…