Walker budget raises taxes and fees by $43 million

AP and WiG reports

An analysis by the nonpartisan Legislative Fiscal Bureau finds that Gov. Scott Walker’s budget would raise taxes and fees by $48 million.

The report released Monday also determines that Walker proposals to bolster tax collection would bring in nearly $125 million in additional revenue over the next two years.

Walker faces a budget shortfall of at least $2.2 billion. Although he’s greatly reduced education expenditures and other government services since taking office, he’s offset the resulting budget gains with massive tax cuts to the very wealthy and giveaways to his corporate backers. The red ink looks bad for Walker, who is a leading contender for the 2016 Republican presidential nomination.

The bulk of the tax increase, $22 million, is Walker’s proposal to delay implementation of a law that expanded when retailers could claim certain sales tax reductions for bad debt.

That law is set to begin in July 2015 but Walker is calling for it not to take effect until 2017.

Walker’s budget would also increase annual state park vehicle admission fees by $3 and nightly camping fees by $2, raising $1.9 million annually.