Monday, February 11, 2019

What's in Evers' 1st budget also explains why Walker's out

Clean drinking water initiatives, more school funding and expanded dental coverage in BadgerCare.

We're seeing more of Democratic Governor Tony Evers' priorities in his first budget, and, by implication, the range of just some of what Walker and his legislative allies had dismissed from public agendas or damaged statewide since 2011.
Tony Evers Flag Portrait.jpg
For more background, this blog had long focused on Walker's enabling of well water contamination, wetland preservation, river pollution and related water issues, summarized in this series.

Plenty of links here also to Walker's war on education which made pawns of children and educators in his divide-and-conquer playbook.

And Republicans are still hostile to expanded Medicaid funding which would finance what Evers wants to do with BadgerCare.

I predict great GOP legislative resistance to Evers' initiatives, even though Republican families deserve cleaner water, better schools and stronger teeth, because what is most important to the GOP is a diminished public sphere.

It will take more than one budget to make a real dent in eight years of GOP damage to the environment, the teaching profession, public employee morale, to name just a few.

And it will take Democratic control of the legislature to address gerrymandering, voting barriers, and a slew of other fundamentals the Walkerites manipulated to keep themselves in power and their special interests served.

But it's good to see information coming out that shows priorities the voters endorsed when Walker and AG Brad Schimel were defeated are finally getting gubernatorial attention.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

There is nothing new here. This is what Evers is proposing:

1) A slight increase for farmstead practices like barnyard paving and manure ponds to reduce runoff (surface water practices): Under Evers' proposal, DATCP could borrow $10 million over two years (an increase of $3 million) to fund grants for farmers who build infrastructure that reduces water pollution from agriculture (infrastructure means cement).

2) Surface water body cleanup: The DNR could also borrow an additional $25 million to clean up contaminated areas of concern in the Milwaukee and St. Louis rivers, and could fund four new positions to implement new water quality standards in the basins of the Wisconsin, Milwaukee, Rock and St. Croix rivers.

3) Increased urban runoff control practices (also addresses only surface water):Evers' budget will also propose $4 million in borrowing (an increase of $300,000) to fund grants for local governments that build infrastructure (cement!) to reduce stormwater runoff and $6.5 million (an increase of $350,000) to fund grants for local governments that build infrastructure (cement) to reduce water pollution.

4) Funding for research and outreach to farmers on runoff management practices (runoff is just surface water): Additional funds would be available to fund studies on runoff management and to provide education and outreach for farmers.

Where is the funding for groundwater and drinking water? It's simply not here. Same people running DNR, same ole stuff. Don't drink the water.