Wisconsin Gov. Unveils Deep Spending Cuts

Scott Walker seek $4.2 billion in cuts, warns they could go even deeper
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Mar 1, 2011 11:16 PM CST
Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker addresses a joint session of the Legislature at the state Capitol in Madison yesterday.   (AP Photo/Andy Manis)
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(Newser) – Gov. Scott Walker unveiled a budget plan Tuesday that balances the Wisconsin's budget by cutting more than $1 billion in state aid to schools and local governments. The Republican said the state is broke and the cuts are necessary to deal with a projected $3.6 billion deficit over the next two fiscal years without raising taxes, the Wall Street Journal reports. Protesters could be heard outside during his budget speech, which outlined a total of $4.2 billion in cuts.

Union leaders have agreed to the cuts but only if Walker ditches his proposal to eliminate collective bargaining rights for most public employees, reports the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel. Walker warned that if Democratic senators who fled the state to avoid a vote on the proposal don't return, the cuts will have to be even deeper. "If the 14 Senate Democrats do not come home, their local communities will be forced to manage these reductions in aid without the benefit of the tools provided in the repair bill," he said.

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