Fiscal Bureau Releases Remainder of the Budget Papers as JFC Enters Last Week
The Joint Finance Committee will seek to wrap up its work on the biennial budget bill this week – with meetings Tuesday, Thursday, Friday and perhaps even Saturday (June 4). The committee has now released a lengthy agenda for June 2 and 3, which includes the remaining topics (in addition to the many kids and families issues on Tuesday’s itinerary). The agenda for June 2 and 3 includes UW issues, local aid (Shared Revenue) for counties and municipalities, the Commerce agency (including the proposal to convert the recycling surcharge to an economic development surcharge), issues relating to choice and charter schools, the state’s building program, and debt restructuring.
Also on the agenda is another issue we’ve been anxiously waiting for – the Governor’s proposal to centralize and privatize the income maintenance (IM) system for enrollment and related services for the Medicaid and FoodShare programs. The Walker administration has had to substantially scale back the privatization aspect of the plan, after USDA officials informed DHS that the proposal would violate federal food stamp regulations. A 22-page Fiscal Bureau paper (#355) compares the recently revised DHS plan with a somewhat similar plan developed by the counties, which has roughly the same cost but retains more of the IM functions and funding at the county level.