Browsing: Taxes

A new bill in Madison could, if enacted, result in substantial property tax cuts in many school districts. It would also result in significantly higher state aid for many traditional public school districts where large numbers of children choose to attend independent charter schools or private schools in one of Wisconsin’s parental choice programs.

Wisconsin’s Republican lawmakers recently introduced Assembly Bill 660, aiming to help employers provide support for working families in meeting the costs of childcare. While the bill’s intentions are commendable, the approach of directly subsidizing employers to create and subsidize childcare slots has proven ineffective in other contexts.

It’s telling that Gov. Evers, Sen. Larson and the rest keep using words like “the wealthy” and “rich” to talk about their targets. The Wisconsin income tax is levied not on wealth that people have saved but on income — what they earn. If you say “rich,” with its implications of inheritance or luck, you don’t have to grapple with how taxes take what someone is working for.

The Badger Institute supports a flat-rate individual income tax, a structure increasingly adopted by competing states. We have spent years researching options for reform that includes a single, low rate. But if that is out of the question as budget negotiations proceed, the priority should be Wisconsin’s top rate.

Among the bills Republicans are considering in the Legislature is one eliminating the last remnants of Wisconsin’s personal property tax. The bill, AB2, sponsored by Rep. Dan Knodl (R-Germantown), would end property taxes on everything but real estate.The move is one the Badger Institute long has advocated.