School-related unfunded mandates have been reported to be provisions included in a package being developed by legislative Republicans to fund shared revenue to local governments. According to Wispolitics.com, the plan includes a mandate requiring all schools statewide to collect and maintain statistics on crimes that happen on school property during the week, similar to a proposal (2023 Assembly Bill 53) that has failed to pass as stand-alone legislation for several legislative sessions. Also included is a mandate requiring the Milwaukee Public School District Board to have school resource officers present at schools during normal hours, as well as other activities as needed. This is similar to legislation introduced earlier this session (Assembly Bill 69). The WASB opposed the former bill on local control grounds and provided comments suggesting changes to the latter bill.
The overall shared revenue plan calls for dedicating 20 percent (i.e., one cent) of the state’s nickel sales tax to provide shared revenue to local municipal governments and counties. The city of Milwaukee and Milwaukee County would have to go to referendum to approve new sales taxes provided for in the draft plan, and, if approved, the city and county would be required to put the new sales tax revenue toward meeting their mounting pension obligations. The plan will likely also include a change in how shared revenue aid is distributed and a repeal of the state’s personal property tax. In addition, it appears likely the plan will also include a one-time transfer create of $300 million to an innovation fund that would be used to incentivize communities to consolidate services as well as a ban on counties and municipalities placing advisory referendums on the ballot.
As of this writing, the full plan has not been released as negotiations were still underway between legislative leaders.