Flat tax: GOP Wisconsin budget committee heads say it is unlikely

Wisconsin Republicans are unlikely to include their plan for a flat 3.25% income tax rate in the state budget, heads of the Republican-controlled Legislature's powerful budget committee said Tuesday, Feb. 28.

Rep. Mark Born and Sen. Howard Marklein, co-chairs of the Republican-controlled Joint Finance Committee, said they plan to cut taxes in the budget, but it's unlikely they will go as far as sending a flat-tax proposal to Democratic Gov. Tony Evers, who has promised to veto the flat tax plan.

"That’s a long-term goal," Marklein said Tuesday at a WisPolitics.com forum. "I support the concept, and it’s not going to happen overnight. I doubt if it will happen in this budget."

Senate Majority Leader Devin LeMahieu first introduced the flat tax plan, which would benefit wealthy filers, last year. Evers swiftly promised to veto any flat-tax proposal passed by the Legislature.

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Evers, speaking earlier Tuesday at a Wisconsin Counties Association event, said he expects that taxes will be cut in the next budget. His plan targets the middle class.

Evers also said that local governments will see an increase in funding. Both Evers and Republicans have voiced support for tapping 20% of state sales tax revenue to support local government.

"It's going to happen," Evers said of increased funding for cities, counties, towns and villages.