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Contact: Jeff Fleming, 414-286-8580
For release: Wednesday, June 14, 2023

Statement from Mayor Cavalier Johnson on the Passage of the Shared Revenue and Sales Tax Legislation

“We have reached an important milestone in the work to resolve Milwaukee’s fiscal challenges. Today’s legislative votes have empowered the City of Milwaukee to overcome financial problems that were decades in the making.

“I appreciate the efforts of Speaker Robin Vos, Majority Leader Devin LeMahieu, and their colleagues. Milwaukee area Democrats including Representatives Kalan Haywood, Sylvia Ortiz-Velez, Christine Sinicki and Deb Andraca, along with Senator LaTonya Johnson thoughtfully voted in support. I also want to expressly thank Governor Tony Evers who was instrumental in advancing this bill.

“I look forward to improving basic municipal functions that will be possible because of this legislation. We anticipate quicker response times for emergency medical, fire, and police calls for service. Our libraries will continue to modernize, offering innovative programing and facilities for our residents.

“One more essential step is ahead of us. I ask the Milwaukee Common Council to join me in support of the two-percent city sales tax. Without the sales tax, we have no option to prevent draconian cuts to basic city services.

“I agree with Council members who object to certain provisions in this bill. I have consistently voiced opposition to the limitations on diversity, equity and inclusion efforts; I have opposed the new limits on the Fire and Police Commission’s work; and, I have repeatedly said the restrictions on streetcar expansion have no place in Wisconsin law. Regrettably, the infringement on local control is now part of this law irrespective of a Council vote on a sales tax.

“Milwaukee will soon have the opportunity to enact a local sales tax and the ability to resolve its own fiscal challenges, just as its peer cities around the country have. This is a major achievement.”

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