Gov. Scott Walker (R-WI)

"Blueprint for Prosperity" +
video from March 2014.

Hi, I'm Scott Walker.  The state of our state is strong and getting stronger every day.  In January, we announced that Wisconsin has a budget surplus of nearly $1 billion.  Our plan for the surplus, which we call the "Blueprint for Prosperity," is simple.  Return the money to the hard-working taxpayers, because it's your money.  Today that money, more than $800 million is on the way back in the form of property and income tax cuts and adjustments to withholding.  This is in addition to the $100 million property tax cut we put in place last fall. 

Starting April 1st, no foolin', you'll keep more of your money.  For a typical working family of four that means an extra $522 in your paycheck this year.  For a typical homeowner your property tax bill this December will be $100 lower than last year.  In fact the typical property tax bill will actually be lower in 2014 than it was in 2010 before I took office. 

That's great because we want more people to live the American Dream.  Owning a house is a big part of that dream.  Here in Wisconsin one of the barriers to owning your own home has been high property taxes.  Instead of the massive tax hikes we saw in the past, property taxes are going down.  My goal is to continue that relief so that property taxes on a typical home will be even lower in 2018.

One of our goals for improving the economy in Wisconsin and the quality of life for everyone who lives here is to lower the overall tax burden every year that I'm in office.  With our "Blueprint for Prosperity" we've done that three years in a row.  The total tax relief since I took office is $2 billion.

Now some people who live and work around the Capitol have suggested that we should keep more of this money here in Madison.  As I travel the state each week, I don't hear many folks outside of Madison telling me that they don't send enough money to Madison.  They don't tell me that their taxes are too low or even that they're just right.  What people overwhelmingly tell me is that the best way to keep our economic recovery going forward is to put more money back into the hands of the hard-working taxpayers. 

Thankfully the days of double-digit tax increases, billion-dollar budget deficits and major job loss are gone.  We've replaced them with massive tax relief, growing budget surpluses and significant job growth.  After inheriting a state with a $3.6 billion deficit we helped create a nearly $1 billion surplus.  After losing 133,000 jobs and 27,000 businesses in the four years before I took office, we've seen the creation of more than 100,000 jobs and 17,000 net new businesses.  Unemployment is the lowest it's been since 2008.  Private sector job growth last year was the best it's been since the 1990s.  Our state pension system is the only one in the country fully funded, and our rainy day fund, well its 165 times bigger than when I took office in 2011. 

We're turning things around.  We're heading in the right direction.  We're moving Wisconsin forward.