Janet Bewley, 7th Assembly
Janet Bewley (Democratic State Representative from Ashland) said it best: "The Legislature passed Gov. Walker’s so-called property tax relief bill," but the Republicans "are still raising your property taxes."
Not only will most homeowners in Wisconsin not see any real reduction in their property taxes when the bills arrive in December, most will actually experience an increase in their property taxes in the following year. Yes, that's right: the total impact of the newly enacted property tax "relief" bill over its two-year lifespan is a modest increase.
Here's Politifact's account:
According to the fiscal bureau, the property tax for a median-valued home -- $151,148 -- was $2,943. Under the biennial state budget, the tax was to drop by $5 in the first year, then increase by $36 in the second. That put the tax bill on the typical home at $2,974 -- a net increase of $31 over the two years.
But with the property tax relief law, the tax on the typical home is now estimated to go down by $18 in the first year and increase $29 in the second. That would put the tax bill at $2,954 -- a net increase of $11. [Politifact, Nov. 6, 2013]
So property taxes under the biennial budget were scheduled to go down a smidgeon and then go up again the next year. With the enactment of the separate property tax law, the reduction in the first year is somewhat larger, but still only about $1.50/month for the median-valued home. And the increase in the following year will wipe out that tiny reduction and then add another $11 to the total bill!
Bottom line: the Walker administration has in fact raised property taxes while claiming to reduce them. It doesn't get much more blatant in the deception department than that.