MILWAUKEE - Gov.
Scott Walker plans to rely on borrowing rather than a gasoline tax
increase to fund transportation projects over the next two years.
A news outlet
reported that the governor's plan calls for $1.3 billion in
borrowing for transportation, but the state's overall borrowing
would drop because Walker wants to delay construction of buildings
that don't already have initial approval, including projects in
the University of Wisconsin system.
reported that the plan will let Walker tout his opposition to
raising taxes as he considers a possible run for president, but
that the increased reliance on borrowing to fund highways may not
go over well with his fellow Republicans who control the
Walker plans to
formally introduce the proposal Tuesday. Lawmakers will spend the
next few months reshaping it.
goal, as stated multiple times, is to lower the burden on the
hardworking taxpayers of the state every year he is in office
while continuing to invest in his priorities," Walker
spokeswoman Laurel Patrick said in a written statement.
Two years ago,
Walker and GOP lawmakers approved $2 billion in borrowing. About
half was for buildings and maintenance and about half was for
transportation. Walker's new plan contains no new borrowing for
buildings because the state has $858 million in unused bonding
authority it can still use.
Darling, R-River Hills, co-chairwoman of the budget-writing Joint
Finance Committee, said wants to see Walker's overall plan before
deciding how much borrowing she could support. She also said she
wants to see a sustainable system for funding roads.
keeps getting kicked down the road," she said. "I'd say
right now everything's on the table."
transportation secretary, Mark Gottlieb, in November recommended
increasing gas taxes and vehicle fees by $751 million over two
years. Walker's office said he rejected those proposals.