Most-Read Posts of 2014
What a year!
2014 was a roller coaster period for Wisconsin. The state started off the year with a budget surplus, passed more tax cuts, and will now have to figure out how to close the resulting budget shortfall. Republicans strengthened their dominance in the state legislature, and have vowed to continue making dramatic changes to the way Wisconsin supports its families, schools, and communities.
Here at the Wisconsin Budget Project, we’ve been working all year to make sense of complex budget-related issues and explain how decisions made by lawmakers help or harm people in Wisconsin. A look back at our most-read posts and publications over the last year serves as a snapshot of budget decisions made over the course of 2014, and demonstrates the consequences of those decisions.
Thank you for reading in 2014. There are already signs that there is going to be plenty more to talk about in 2015. I have a feeling it’s going to be another roller coaster year.
Most-read posts of the year:
- Wisconsin gets bad news on both taxes and spending (June 27, 2014): Revenue and spending developments raise serious questions about the wisdom of committing so much of the projected state surplus for another round of tax cuts, before the projected revenue increase actually materialized.
- Breaking with tradition: How Wisconsin lawmakers have shortchanged a legacy of investment in the state’s future (August 6, 2014): Over the last three and a half years elected officials have made dramatic changes to how Wisconsin supports its schools, communities and workforce.
- Tax breaks abound in Wisconsin, but job growth remains slow (May 2, 2014): Despite – or because of –substantial tax cuts, private sector job growth in Wisconsin has been slower than the national average.
- Missing out: Recent tax cuts deliver little to people who earn the least (June 3, 2014): Three major tax cut packages passed by the Wisconsin legislature have delivered relatively little benefit to the lowest earners, who are struggling to make ends meet.
- Downgrade of Kansas bond rating offers another warning to Wisconsin (May 7, 2014): A bond rating agency has downgraded its rating of Kansas’ creditworthiness, citing revenue reductions from tax cuts and slow economic growth, among other factors. Wisconsin, are you listening?
- Still waiting: Unlike U.S., Wisconsin has not returned to pre-recession job levels (June 12, 2014): Further gains are needed before Wisconsin workers are as well off as they were in 2008.
- State tax collections fall far short of projections (August 28, 2014): The rush to pass election-year tax cuts, without setting funding aside for an adequate budget cushion, put state lawmakers back in exactly the sort of budget mess that they promised to avoid.
- Increasing the minimum wage would help Wisconsin families (February 3, 2014): Raising the minimum wage would give a raise to 1 out of 5 Wisconsin workers.
- Pulling apart 2014: Focus on Wisconsin’s 1% (February 28, 2014): Over the last 40 years, Wisconsin’s richest residents have experienced dramatic increases in income, while Wisconsinites not among the very highest earners saw their incomes stagnate or decline.
- GDP numbers confirm Wisconsin’s lagging growth (June 16, 2014): If Wisconsin’s economy had grown at the same rate as the national average over the three years since 2010, our state GDP would have been $4 billion higher at the end of 2013.