No. Republicans who control Wisconsin’s Legislature have routinely passed funding for the state’s public schools, most recently in the 2021–23 biennial budget. However, many Republican plans for education funding have been in conflict with Democrats’ goals.
Sixty pages of drafting documents included only initials and partial names of legislative service agency staffers.
All but two of 13 bills died.
The Wisconsin Center for Investigative Journalism filed a request with Darling’s office for her records on the bill. The 137 released pages provide some insight into what went on behind the scenes, but fall short of explaining why.
Significantly, in all three areas under review in the report — tenure, turnover and reelection — the trends of the past several decades have not held true in the most recent elections.
Exactly a year ago, the Wisconsin Legislature caught us sleeping. In a secret predawn move on June 5, 2013, legislators anonymously inserted a measure into the state budget. The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel’s Jason Stein broke the news in a tweet at 5:19 a.m. — the moment we’re posting this update, as we reflect on the first anniversary. The entire Legislature soon approved the two-sentence provision, titled “Wisconsin Center for Investigative Journalism.” It would have evicted WCIJ from offices we share with our student interns on the University of Wisconsin-Madison campus, and would have made it illegal for UW employees to collaborate with WCIJ. With your help, our darkest hour became our finest hour.
Lawmakers must provide any documents they possess in response to an open records request. But they don’t need to provide documents they don’t have, and nothing compels them to keep documents.
Schultz, a Republican who is stepping down after 32 years in the Legislature, most as a state senator, is dumbfounded: “Who’d have ever thought you’d be at a Republican function and have to defend Abraham Lincoln?”
So far as we can recall, no lawmaker has ever before tried to defeat the state’s open records law by employing this ruse. We are deeply disappointed in both Sen. Vukmir and the Attorney General’s Office, for the position it has taken.
Wisconsin’s new Common Core standards for math and English cost the state very little to implement because individual districts are footing the bill, which likely will come to about $25 million.
The biennial state budget is, in theory, fundamentally about numbers. So here are some numbers from and about the 2013-15 budget as crafted by Gov. Scott Walker and the Wisconsin Legislature.
A summary of what happened, news coverage and the Center’s response to the budget provision that would have evicted the Center from the University of Wisconsin.