Wisconsin remains without a state budget, a unique and irresponsible status among our nation’s 50 states. Governor Doyle has called a special session to resolve the fiscal failures (news release here), hoping to punt the controversial tax on oil companies to a later date while still passing a budget. (Controversial in the sense of unconstitutional, damaging to the economy, and unnecessarily painful to the consumers. In that sense.)
But Doyle’s legislative allies are intent in making things difficult.
Wisconsin state Senate Democrats proposed a transportation funding and fee bill today — including a tax on oil company revenues.
The transportation bill accompanies a new, two-year budget proposed by Gov. Jim Doyle, which lawmakers are scheduled to vote on today.
In an effort to break a more than three-month-long budget impasse, Doyle called a special session for today for the Legislature to take up his new budget. But he specifically excluded transportation and the oil tax he proposed earlier this year because Republicans had opposed the tax.
Matt Canter, a spokesman for Doyle, declined to comment on the Senate transportation proposal.
“Does it matter what he thinks?” Canter said of Doyle. “His focus is for the Legislature to do its job. It has to pass a budget.”
Oh, Matt. Not a good response, pointing out your boss’s inefficacy.
The tax on oil company revenues, including a provision to make it a CRIME for the companies pass on the costs to consumers, does several things: 1. Raises the cost of gas on consumers. 2. Makes Wisconsin a less attractive place to do business. 3. Violates the U.S. Constitution.
Could those possibly be selling points for some legislators?
Lots more resources on the tax at the Hamilton Consulting Group’s website.
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