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Reaction Comes In About Gov. Walker's Budget Address

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Reaction from some Northwoods legislators followed party lines after Governor Scott Walker's budget message Wednesday.

Republican Representative Rob Swearingen of Rhinelander says he education component of the speech was better news for rural schools... 

"....in this budget he's adding another $200 per pupil aid in the first year of the biennium then another $204 in the second year and this is outside the funding formula which helps all districts like Rhinelander. Coupled with the $250 there, that's a $650 dollar(per pupil) aid. That's good news for a place like Rhinelander...."

He says the improved transportation funding will help school districts pay for costly student transportation. He says he also saw a focus on promoting K-12 Fab Labs which began in the Northwoods.

But Democratic Senator Janet Bewley of Mason says the speech was long on good words, but she thinks the reality of the budget will come in upcoming weeks as more details are available...

"....there was very little in it except suggestions of where he is going to put some new funding. But no indication where that money is coming from and where the cuts are. He didn't talk about what would be cut to make these new allocations possible...so the bad news is yet to come..."

Bewley says the education budget was cut by $800 million six years ago, and he's only restored a portion of that with the increased spending, and Bewley says he had nothing to say about a proposed reorganization of the Department of Natural Resources.

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