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The shared revenue bill proposed by Wisconsin Republicans would prohibit a county or municipality from holding an advisory referendum, according to a draft of bill released May 2. 

Advisory referendums are used to gauge public opinion on proposals and are not binding, meaning the government does not have to enact the measure — even if the majority votes for it.

While the bill would boost state funding to Milwaukee by 10%, it would limit the city’s ability to fund certain initiatives by requiring a two-thirds vote from City Council to approve spending on new programs. Some local leaders, particularly those in Milwaukee, have protested such stipulations attached to the shared revenue bill.

Though the bill’s exact details could change, Gov. Tony Evers said he will veto it, saying it fails to provide a sufficient amount of unrestricted funds to local government.

This Fact Brief is responsive to conversations such as this one.


Wisconsin State Legislature 2023 Assembly Bill 245

Wisconsin State Legislature Ballot Initiative and Referendum in Wisconsin

Wisconsin Public Radio ‘Attack on local control’: Milwaukee leaders decry shared revenue provisions for city

AP News Evers promises to veto GOP local aid increase plan

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Erin Gretzinger / Wisconsin WatchReporting Intern

Erin Gretzinger joined Wisconsin Watch as a reporting intern in May 2022. She is a journalism and French major at UW-Madison and will graduate in spring 2023. Erin previously worked for the Wisconsin State Journal as a reporting intern and served as the 2021-22 editor-in-chief at The Badger Herald. She is a recipient of the Jon Wolman Scholarship, the Sigrid Schultz Scholarship and the Joseph Sicherman Award Fund for her academic and reporting work.