Monday, June 06, 2011

Oshkosh Community Protests Hopper's Devastating Budget

Monday June 6, 2011

Contact: Viet Shelton (920) 204-6746

Oshkosh Community Protests Hopper's Devastating Budget
Local community members sharply criticize Hopper¹s key role in crafting
state budget proposal dramatically out of step with Wisconsin values

OSHKOSH ­ Dozens of community members gathered today to protest Sen. Randy
Hopper's role in writing and passing a job-killing state budget proposal
that punishes Wisconsin's middle class working families, while rewarding the super-rich and out-of-state corporations.

"A budget is a moral document. Sen. Hopper has decided it is moral to
balance the budget at the expense of the vulnerable, students, city and
county services and all public and private workers who go to work every day
hoping their sweat, time and talent will create a better future for their
families and communities," said Jef Hall, Oshkosh Common Council member. "As a member of the Joint Finance Committee, Sen. Hopper was leading the way on these family and job destroying policies."

The protest was organized after the Joint Finance Committee passed a
jobs-killing state budget late last Friday night going into Saturday
morning. As a member of the committee, Sen. Hopper is one of the key
architects of the budget. The proposal passed by Sen. Hopper kept most of
the high-profile parts of Gov. Walker's original proposed budget, including
drastic cuts to schools, healthcare, local government and Wisconsin¹s higher education system.

"Our children deserve a world class education, especially if we want them to be ready to compete for the jobs of tomorrow," said Hedy Eischied, an
educator in the Fond du Lac school district. "The budget that Sen. Hopper
wrote threatens to give our kids a third world education. Rather than help
our schools, Sen. Hopper chose to help corporate special interests with
multimillion dollar tax breaks."

In another effort to balance the state budget on the backs of everyday
Wisconsinites, Sen. Hopper and the Joint Finance Committee voted to raise
taxes by repealing the indexing of the Homestead tax credit, which
significantly benefits seniors on a fixed income. Hopper also approved cuts
to programs funding long-term care for elderly or disabled adults.

"In the 18th district, tens of thousands of seniors depend on services such
as home care that helps them maintain a level of independence and a quality
of life they would not be able to afford otherwise," said Donna Lohry, an
Oshkosh retiree. "In writing this budget, Sen. Hopper has turned his back on Oshkosh's seniors."

The budget passed by Sen. Hopper and the Joint Finance committee would cut 11 percent from Wisconsin's higher education system totalling $250 million .

"By cutting funding to our higher education system and raising tuition
rates, we are turning away a generation of young Wisconsinites from the
opportunity to get the skills they need to get jobs of the new economy,"
said Jen Gingras, a student at UW Oshkosh. "Sen. Hopper's extreme budget
decimates access to our higher education system when we should be looking
for ways to enroll more students."


Paid for by We Are Wisconsin PAC, Phil Neuenfeldt, Treasurer. Not
authorized by any candidate or candidate¹s agent or committee.


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