2020 Madison School District Referendum Climate: city tax and spending increases

David Blaska:

It was what we thought it was. Madison is 10 to 1 opposed to the city’s $40 wheel tax, judging from the 2,000 pages [CORRECTED] of e-mails that flooded city hall from 250 individuals. Kudos to Chris Rickert of the WI State Journal for filing the open records request to get that info. Many of the supporting messages came from insiders like the public employees union.

Didn’t stop the council from approving Mayor Satya Rhodes-Conway’s* tax 11 to 8 a month ago. (* Progressive Dane)

Voting YES: Bidar, Furman*, Lemmer, Rummel*, Martin, Evers*, Moreland, Foster*, Verveer*, Heck*, Kemble* — 11

Voting NO: Abbas, Albouras, Baldeh, Carter, Harrington-McKinney, Henak, Skidmore, Tierney — 8

e-mail iconNotice anything strange about the tax? It was sold as the only way possible to balance the city budget. There Was No Choice! Scott Walker made us do it! No choice — if you wanted to embark on a multi-million dollar rapid bus transit system, that is. But alders never really debated bus rapid transit. A major policy initiative snuck in through the back door. We have to fund it before we will know it works.

Rickert’s news story concludes with this gem: Ald. Grant Foster* responds to a constituent opposed to the wheel tax this way:

“Can you imagine a future where you might need to own fewer or zero cars? What would it take to make that a reasonable option for you or your household?”

Madison school district is planning a substantial tax and spending increase referendum in 2020.

Madison taxpayers have long spent far more than most K-12 school districts, yet, we have long tolerated disastrous reading results