Policy Agenda & ProgressState Budget Request
Raising Wisconsin called for significant state funding for child care and optimal child health and well-being initiatives in Wisconsin’s 2023-25 state budget. The coalition’s budget priorities centered around support for young children and their families, early childhood professionals and programs, and the economic and social well-being of all Wisconsin communities.
In July 2023, Gov. Tony Evers signed Wisconsin’s final 2023-25 state budget. The $97.4 billion budget does not include funding to continue the Child Care Counts Program, and it also does not include important investments in Raising Wisconsin’s health and well-being budget priorities.
WISCONSIN STATE BUDGET RESULTS TRACKING
Wisconsin’s biennial budget development process began in September 2022 and continued with the governor’s announcement of the executive budget. From there, public hearings were held, and the Joint Committee on Finance subsequently voted on its final budget. The full Legislature took action on the budget and sent it to Gov. Tony Evers in July 2023. Evers signed it on July 5, 2023, issuing 51 partial – or line item – vetoes. Unfortunately, the vetoes had no immediate impact on any of Raising Wisconsin’s budget priorities.
Asked for $300M for Child Care Counts
Budget Included: $0
CHILD MENTAL HEALTH:
Asked for $8.79M for Infant Early Childhood Mental Health Consultation (IECMHC)
Budget Included: $535,000 for social-emotional learning
Asked for $5.2M for the expansion of Family Foundations Home Visiting Program
Budget Included: $0
MEDICAID COVERAGE IN POSTPARTUM PERIOD:
Asked for extension to 12 months
Budget Included: No extension
CHILD CARE REQUEST
Raising Wisconsin called for $300 million in state general purpose revenue to continue the Child Care Counts Program. Since 2020, Child Care Counts has been essential for Wisconsin child care programs to support provider compensation, keep tuition as reasonable as possible for families, and stay open to serve their communities.
WHAT IS THE FISCAL CLIFF?
Wisconsin has received more than $800 million in COVID-relief funding since the start of the pandemic to support early care and education, including significant funding for Child Care Counts. Therefore, January 2024 will mark the start of a damaging cliff if policymakers do not allocate state funding for continuity in support of child care.
The current reduction in Child Care Counts payments and the upcoming end of the program already are impacting early educators, child care programs, and families, according to a Wisconsin Early Childhood Association survey.
HEALTH AND WELL-BEING REQUEST
Raising Wisconsin called for $8.79 million for children’s mental health, $5.2 million for the expansion of the Family Foundations Home Visiting Program, and extending Medicaid coverage to 12 months in the postpartum period.