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Conservatively Speaking

State Senator Mary Lazich (R-New Berlin) represents parts of four counties: Milwaukee, Waukesha, Racine, and Walworth. Her Senate District 28 includes New Berlin, Franklin, Greendale, Hales Corners, Muskego, Waterford, Big Bend, the town of Vernon and parts of Greenfield, East Troy, and Mukwonago. Senator Lazich has been in the Legislature for more than a decade. She considers herself a tireless crusader for lower taxes, reduced spending and smaller government.

Flood victims may be eligible for tax relief

News you can use


The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) says flood victims in five Wisconsin counties, including Milwaukee County could receive tax relief.

Here is more information from the IRS.

Most states are saying no to tax increases

Taxes


So far, only a handful of states have decided to raise taxes to address their budgets.

The 2007-09 Wisconsin budget that I voted against that was signed into law increased taxes. So did the budget repair bill that I voted against.

it is unfortunate that Wisconsin has failed to follow the path taken by most other states and reject tax increases during tough budget times.

Stateline has the story.

Wisconsin losing prime population


One of the biggest concerns I have blogged about and discussed extensively as I travel throughout Senate District 28 is Wisconsin’s propensity to lose our high-income level citizens and many of our best and brightest to other states. We can point fingers at the weatherman but the taxman shoulders much of the blame.

During November 2005, the Wisconsin Taxpayer Alliance issued a very troubling report entitled, "Moving In, Moving on: Migration in Wisconsin."  During the five years prior to the 2000 census, almost 669,000 people either moved to or out of Wisconsin. However, the net in-migration into Wisconsin was a meager 7,282.

Individuals with college or advanced degrees were more likely to leave, while those with less education tended to come. Individuals with household incomes above $75,000 left Wisconsin. Those with incomes of $200,000 or more had the highest rates of leaving.

The huge exodus of wealthy Wisconsinites leaving the state caused a loss of an estimated $4.72 billion in net worth and a loss of $455 million in income over the five years of this study. 

During November 2007, USA TODAY reported that Americans are moving across state lines at the highest rate since the early 1990s. U.S, Census Bureau data shows lots of people are moving, but not to Wisconsin that ranks at number 45 among the states, with 1.9 percent of the state’s population in 2006 having moved here from another state.

Arthur Laffer, president of Laffer Associates and Stephen Moore, senior economics writer for The Wall Street Journal editorial board confirm that high taxing and spending have had a negative impact on Wisconsin’s ability to compete and cause many people to relocate elsewhere. Laffer and Moore wrote in the Wall Street Journal,  “Five of the states near the bottom of our competitiveness ratings -- Illinois, Maryland, Michigan, New Jersey and Wisconsin -- have enacted major tax increases in the last two years. Maryland and Michigan just raised business and income taxes on upper-income earners, while arguing that raising the cost of doing business will attract more businesses. More likely it will induce companies to stay away, and people to move out.”

The latest USA TODAY analysis of Census data shows 35 states, including Wisconsin lost population during 2007 in the age category 25-44. Wisconsin’s population in that age bracket dropped by five percent last year.

William Frey, demographer at the Brookings Institution tells USA TODAY that older industrial states are facing the loss of the younger, high-fertility workers.

In Massachusetts, that suffered a 9.6 percent drop in its 25-44 population, the research director at MassINC, a non-partisan think tank in Boston, Dana Ansel made an understatement when she told USA TODAY, "Losing people in their prime working years is not positive."

The new USA TODAY analysis fails to offer specific details why states like Wisconsin are losing workers aged 25-44 but my suspicion is that economics plays a vital role. That all goes back to our high level of taxing and spending.

Please read the USA TODAY article and my blog on this issue, “Taxes go up, people move out.”

Taxing the Internet: UPDATE

Taxes

Read more

New federal law allows Wisconsin to track molesters living on tribal lands

Wisconsin is one of six states that has gained new power to track sex offenders living on tribal lands because of a provision in a new federal law.

The provision is part of the new Adam Walsh Child and Protection Act that was signed into law by President Bush.

Stateline.org reports, “The change would mean the states soon must ensure that sex offenders within tribal borders register more frequently with law enforcement authorities and often for longer periods of time. The states must add molesters to existing online sex-offender registries and collect and publish information about their appearance, whereabouts and even the cars they drive. In some cases, they must see that offenders who currently are not behind bars are identified and added to state registries retroactively.”

Read the entire Stateline.org article.

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