The Wisconsin legislature raised taxes more than $5 billion in 2009. In the middle of recession. That's why I was motivated to speak at TEA parties, encouraging people to stay passionate about their fury over our unreasonable tax burden.
It's simple "kitchen table common sense". We can't outspend our incomes, or we begin to borrow from next week or next month or next year. Worse, we begin to borrow from our children's futures. We want our kids to have better lives than ours. For the first time ever, our government is on the verge of taking that dream away from a generation of Wisconsinites. Government, like us, needs to spend what it has, and not just what it wants.
We need to pay our bills on time, but our government imagines the same standards don't apply to it. Because the Democrat-controlled legislature didn't budget properly, the state is withholding $10.1 million in payments to municipalities that help pay for things like police officers and fire fighters. We need truth in budgeting.
It's time we end the practice of using accounting tricks to make the budget appear balanced. Bureaucrats, just like regular folks, should have to justify how they're spending our money. Did you know that, right now, most state departments simply take last biennium's budget and just add on? It would be like a household budgeting one year for a lawn service, then realizing their lawn didn't really have fewer weeds with the expensive service. If the household followed the lead of state government, they'd simply include the lawn service in their next budget because it was already there, instead of crossing it out and finding a cheaper, more effective solution. It's time for zero-based budgeting.