Have you heard those new TV ads Republican Gov. Scott Walker is running touting how he eliminated Wisconsin’s budget deficits?
Don’t believe a word Walker says, because Department of Administration Secretary Mike Huebsch has the truth, which is that Wisconsin has projected budget deficits for fiscal years 2012 and 2013.
What’s more, if we use Generally Accepted Accounting Principles (GAAP) to take a look at Gov. Walker’s first biennial budget (as Walker himself promised to do as a candidate), we’d have budget deficits in the billions of dollars.
We examined Walker’s first budget, the 2011-13 biennial budget, to see if he lived up to his promise to balance the budget using GAAP.
There’s a chart every two years in the state budget demonstrating the bottom line under GAAP. The chart in the Walker administration’s Budget in Brief shows that the 2011-13 budget was not close to balanced by that standard.
In fact, the document shows that based on GAAP accounting, the state would have been left with a deficit of $3 billion by 2012-13 under Walker’s budget. That compares to the $2.9 billion GAAP deficit he inherited at the end of Doyle’s term, the state’s financial statements show.
So when Gov. Scott Walker says he’s eliminated Wisconsin’s budget deficit, he’s all rhetoric, no reality. Scott Walker didn’t eliminate Wisconsin’s budget deficits; he simply kicked the can down the road the same as his predecessors.