MADISON, WI -- State Representative Gae Magnafici is pleased to announce the latest Shared Revenue initiatives to support Wisconsin’s local governments. This program has been a challenge for local governments for a while, but new funding and incentives are on the way to help them overcome these challenges.
The state would dedicate 20% of state sales tax revenues to local governments, totaling approximately $1.5 billion. In addition, over half a billion in new funding is being provided for local government innovation and public safety, including a $300M Innovation Fund to encourage efficiencies, cost savings, and consolidation.
The Innovation Fund is a three-year pilot program that incentivizes local governments to come together and provide services more efficiently. If the Department of Revenue approves a project, it will receive three years of funding. Two or more communities must newly share services that result in at least a 5% savings by year two and a 10% savings by year three.
Moreover, there will be significant increases for EMS providers towards ambulances, equipment, and durable medical supplies. The state reimbursement for officer training costs will also be doubled, ensuring law enforcement services are maintained and not subject to cuts.
The new funding is directed to law enforcement, fire protection, emergency medical services, emergency response communications, public works, and transportation. Every local government will see at least a 10% minimum increase in shared revenue.
Representative Magnafici said, "We are targeting smaller municipalities and those who did poorly under the old formula. These new initiatives will have a positive impact on local governments in Wisconsin. We are confident that the Innovation Fund will incentivize local governments to collaborate and provide services more efficiently. We hope that it will lead to long-term cost savings."
A new Local Government Segregated Account is also being created with funding totaling over $1.5 billion, including existing shared revenue and other current local government aid programs and new funding for local governments and the Innovation Fund. The new $227 million is split $50 million for counties and $177 million for cities, villages, and towns.
Representative Magnafici is committed to providing updates on this program as they become available. She urges anyone with questions or concerns to contact her.