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State budget lowers property taxes $1 this year, $2 next year

Gov. Scott Walker, shown in December touting how much property taxes have gone down under his administration, signed a budget in July that lowers property taxes by $1 on the median-valued home this year and another $2 next year.

Property taxes on a median-valued Wisconsin home are set to drop $1 this upcoming winter, and another $2 next year, the state’s nonpartisan budget agency reported Monday.

For a median-valued home of $154,268, property taxes are estimated at $2,830 in 2015-16. The home value is expected to increase to $159,205 in 2016-17, but property taxes would still decline to $2,828.

That’s a slightly smaller cut than the $7 and $3 in Gov. Scott Walker’s original 2015-17 budget proposal, according to the Legislative Fiscal Bureau.

The adjustment resulted from changes the Legislature made to Walker’s budget, including allowing school districts to count students in the private school voucher program in the formula for how much they can raise property taxes. The state does not assess property taxes.

Walker has been touting how his state budgets have reduced property taxes on the presidential campaign trail. In an interview Monday with National Public Radio, he mentioned the tax cuts when asked about his approval numbers in the state hovering in the low 40s.

“I could probably pad the score if I didn’t take on really big challenges,” Walker said. “But Americans want leaders who are willing to take on a big risk and think more about the next generation than the next election.”

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Matthew DeFour covers state government and politics for the Wisconsin State Journal.