Thursday, February 21st

State

Gov. Tony Evers says he will send a letter to Attorney General Josh Kaul this week to change Wisconsin's stance in a federal lawsuit to overturn the Affordable Care Act.(Photo11: Molly Beck, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel)

MADISON - Gov. Tony Evers' first state budget won't include a plan to eliminate or phase out taxpayer-funded school vouchers despite once saying during his campaign that he would try.

Evers on Tuesday said he would seek to provide "more accountability and transparency" within the state's private school voucher programs but would not include a proposal to phase them out. 

Instead, Evers said, he supports including on property tax bills how much each taxpayer is spending on vouchers for private school students living in their school district, something Milwaukee has done since 2011 and Racine initiated last year.

"I think that's not an anti-voucher issue, that's just a transparency issue," Evers said during an appearance at Marquette University.

Gov. Tony Evers says he will send a letter to Attorney General Josh Kaul this week to change Wisconsin's stance in a federal lawsuit to overturn the Affordable Care Act.(Photo11: Molly Beck, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel)

MADISON - Gov. Tony Evers' first state budget won't include a plan to eliminate or phase out taxpayer-funded school vouchers despite once pledging to try during his campaign.

Evers on Tuesday said he would seek to provide "more accountability and transparency" within the state's private school voucher programs but would not include a proposal to phase them out. 

Instead, Evers said, he supports including on property tax bills how much each taxpayer is spending on vouchers for private school students living in their school district, something Milwaukee has done since 2011 and Racine initiated last year.

"I think that's not an anti-voucher issue, that's just a transparency issue," Evers said during an appearance at Marquette University. "I think the people of Wisconsin do need to have a conversation around public schools and publicly funded schools period and in order to have that I think we need to have the best transparency possible.

GOP Sens. Dave Craig of Big Bend (left) and Duey Stroebel of Cedarburg (center) and Chris Kapenga of Delafield.(Photo11: Wisconsin Legislature)

MADISON - Republican state senators made clear Tuesday they are all but certain to block Democratic Gov. Tony Evers' plan to expand BadgerCare Plus under Obamacare.

In the state budget he will introduce next week, Evers plans to accept more federal Medicaid money to make BadgerCare available to 76,000 more people. The plan would free up $280 million in state money over two years that could be used for other purposes. 

Republicans who control the Legislature are not on board with that idea.

"I think all of us have made it very clear that we do not and will not support Medicaid expansion," Republican Sen. Chris Kapenga of Delafield said Tuesday.

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He was joined at a Capitol news conference by GOP Sens.

GOP Sens. Dave Craig of Big Bend (left) and Duey Stroebel of Cedarburg (center) and Chris Kapenga of Delafield.(Photo11: Wisconsin Legislature)

MADISON - Republican state senators made clear Tuesday they are all but certain to block Democratic Gov. Tony Evers' plan to expand BadgerCare Plus under Obamacare.

In the state budget he will introduce next week, Evers plans to accept more federal Medicaid money to make BadgerCare available to 76,000 more people. The plan would free up $280 million in state money over two years that could be used for other purposes. 

Republicans who control the Legislature are not on board with that idea.

"I think all of us have made it very clear that we do not and will not support Medicaid expansion," Republican Sen. Chris Kapenga of Delafield said Tuesday.

He was joined at a Capitol news conference by GOP Sens. Dave Craig of Big Bend and Duey Stroebel of Saukville, who like Kapenga have vocally criticized Obamacare.

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Attorney General Josh Kaul listens to a speaker at the YMCA of Metropolitan Milwaukee 22nd annual Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. celebration breakfast at the Italian Community Center in Milwaukee.(Photo11: Mike De Sisti / Milwaukee Journal Sentinel)

MADISON - Attorney General Josh Kaul on Tuesday threatened to "take appropriate action" if funding bound for Wisconsin instead goes to pay for a wall along the southern U.S. border as a result of President Donald Trump's emergency declaration.

Kaul did not say he would join a multistate federal lawsuit filed this week challenging Trump's declaration to free up billions to pay for a U.S-Mexico border wall, but Gov. Tony Evers said Tuesday his team is "exploring" the idea of joining. 

In a statement, Kaul said Trump's declaration "is a blatant attempt to circumvent the system of checks and balances prescribed by the United States Constitution" and said he expects the action to be blocked by the courts.