Gov. Walker is also proposing a tuition cut for UW Systems students that would cost the state $35 million.
He wants to cut taxes by $592 million dollars, and to do so by cutting property and income taxes, and fee changes.
"We've got to figure out where all the money is going to come from".
Walker's executive budget calls for adding 16.25 positions to the program. "We'll have to see if that's real".
"I mean that's good growth", Fitzgerald said.
Ironically, Wachs said, education is one of the programs Walker decimated over his past budgets.
"It seems that the press conclusion is that this is a re-election announcement for 2018", said Wisconsin Taxpayers Alliance Director Todd Berry. "I don't know what to think about all this yet".
The Governor's Conference on Economic Development is hosted by the Wisconsin Economic Development Association (WEDA) and serves as their largest education and networking event of the year.
"Over the next several weeks, we will learn more about the small print details when the nonpartisan Legislative Fiscal Bureau releases their budget summary", said the Alma Democrat, whose Senate district includes Pierce and Pepin counties. "Until then, Wisconsin citizens would be well advised to reserve judgment on Governor Walker's plan".
Area Republicans, however, left Walker's budget address in positive moods.
The budget includes $648.9 million in per-pupil aid for K-12 education, a portion of which would be funded by $60 million in projected savings from moving to a self-insurance model for state employees.
"The state of our state is strong, and the state of our budget is outstanding", says Governor Scott Walker as he began his 2017-2019 Budget Address in Madison, Wednesday.
"That was welcome news", she said. "Whether you're raising children in Racine or Greenwood, this budget sets priorities to help deliver a top-notch education to all Wisconsin kids".
"The jury's still out in my mind", she said. Walker is touting a $600 million tax cut without proposing any new revenue for the state's transportation fund, which is operating at a deficit of at least $1 billion. Although, the Juneau Republican says he's largely waiting to see if Congressman Sean Duffy (R-WI) decides to enter the race.
Fitzgerald said Thursday at a luncheon sponsored by Wispolitics.com that lifting the caps will "absolutely" be a part of the discussion as the Legislature works on rewriting the governor's budget.
Republicans, including Rep. Shannon Zimmerman, R-River Falls, lauded Walker's budget plan. "I wouldn't say that's completely off the table", he said.
"I love it", he said.
Rep. John Nygren (R-Marinette), who also co-chairs the panel, expressed reservations about the governor's road funding proposal.