amount of money the state can borrow for highway projects would
be limited under legislation the Wisconsin Senate approved last
voted 27-5 in favor of the bill, sending it to the governor. The
measure previously passed the Assembly 82-11.
legislation resulted from a deal Gov. Jim Doyle reached Oct. 21
with Republican lawmakers to avoid delaying some road work in the
next two months, The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reported.
The bill also would change how the money is repaid.
the budget he signed this summer, Doyle used his veto authority
to ensure the bonds would be repaid with transportation funds, which
are made up of revenue from the state’s fuel tax and license fees.
deal allows the first two years of interest on the bonds to be paid
with transportation funds. After that, they will be paid off with
general fund revenue.
governor also used his veto authority to increase the amount of
money the state could borrow for road projects to $1 billion for
the two-year period that began July 1, from $100 million, the newspaper
reported. Doyle indicated in July that he planned to use $565 million
of the available bonding authority over the next two years for highway
Speaker John Gard, R-Peshtigo, had threatened to sue, claiming the
veto was unconstitutional because it increased borrowing authority
without the Legislature's permission. He claimed the governor could
only reduce borrowing authority.