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The Latest: Finance committee OKs tax cuts, finishes budget

June 13, 2019

MADISON, Wis. (AP) — The Latest on the Legislature’s finance committee’s work to revise Gov. Tony Evers’ state budget (all times local):

11:55 a.m.

The Legislature’s Republican-controlled finance committee has wrapped up revisions on Democratic Gov. Tony Evers’ state budget.

The committee finished its work Thursday by inserting a GOP tax cut plan into the budget on a 12-4 party line vote.

The plan cuts income taxes by $321.5 million over the 2019-2021 biennium, resulting in an average cut of $75 per taxpayer in tax year 2019 and $77 in tax year 2020.

The plan shifts about $60 million from the state’s general fund to bolster lottery property tax credits. It imposes a much lower tax on e-cigarettes and vaping products than Evers called for, resulting in about $23.7 million less revenue for the state.

Republicans scrapped an Evers proposal to cut income taxes by $833 million over the biennium. They also dumped his plan to prohibit businesses from using Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation tax credits, grants and loans to cut jobs in Wisconsin or move jobs out of the state.

The budget goes next to the full Senate and Assembly.

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10:20 a.m.

Firmer figures are emerging on the tax cuts Republicans who control the Legislature’s finance committee plan to insert in Democratic Gov. Tony Evers’ state budget.

A Legislative Fiscal Bureau analysis of the proposal shows Republicans would reduce the second-lowest income tax bracket by .63 percent, resulting in a $321.5 million cut over the 2019-2021 biennium.

The GOP plan also would shift about $58.6 million in general tax dollars to the Wisconsin Lottery. The money would increase the lottery property tax credit.

Republicans would impose a much lower tax on e-cigarettes and vaping products than Evers called for, resulting in about $23.7 million less revenue for the state.

The committee plans to adopt the plan Thursday. The panel also plans to approve a GOP bill that would require online marketplaces such as Amazon to collect sales tax from third-party sellers and use the money to further reduce the two lowest income tax brackets.

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9:35 a.m.

Republicans who control the Legislature’s finance committee are planning to add a roughly $300 million income tax cut to Democratic Gov. Tony Evers’ state budget.

Committee co-chairs John Nygren and Alberta Darling told reporters Thursday that Republicans plan to insert language in the budget that will reduce the two lowest tax brackets.

They also said that they plan to require online marketplaces such as Amazon to collect and remit sales tax from third-party sellers. That revenue would go toward reducing individual income taxes.

They didn’t elaborate.

The committee was expected to convene later Thursday morning to vote on the moves.

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7:55 a.m.

Republicans on the Legislature’s finance committee are nearly finished revising Democratic Gov. Tony Evers’ state budget.

The committee has been working on tweaking the budget since May. The panel is scheduled to wrap up its work Thursday.

Republican members plan to add a $400 million middle-class tax cut to the budget. They’ll also consider whether to retain language imposing a new tax on e-cigarettes and vaping products equal to 71 percent of the product’s price and prohibiting businesses from using Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation tax credits, grants and loans from reducing net employment in Wisconsin or moving jobs out of the state.

The budget will go next to the full Legislature. An identical version must pass both houses before it goes back to Evers for his signature.

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