New Data Show Wisconsin Still Has a Lean Public Sector

September 9, 2010

Wisconsin continues its decade-long trend of having fewer state and local employees than the
national average, according to a new analysis by the Wisconsin Budget Project.

Recently-released data from the U.S. Census Bureau show that Wisconsin has 4.4 percent fewer
state and local government employees per capita in 2009 than the national average, ranking 38th
among the states. State and local employees include workers in a wide variety of functions,
including teachers, highway workers, corrections guards, firefighters, and police officers.

“The new Census Bureau data on public sector employment may come as a surprise to some, but
Wisconsin has had fewer state and local employees per capita than the national average going
back at least a decade,” said Wisconsin Budget Project Director Jon Peacock. Wisconsin had
51.8 state and local full-time equivalent positions (FTEs) per 1,000 residents in 2009, compared
to a national average of 54.2 FTEs. “The Census Bureau figures show that only 12 other states
had a leaner public sector than Wisconsin in 2009,” Peacock noted. Read the full press release.