Because of Gov. Scott McCallum’s declaration Monday that he would wait until the Legislative Fiscal Bureau provided him with estimates of state revenues, the suffering state economy will not be alleviated by the calling of a special legislative session until at least January.
The Fiscal Bureau is a nonpartisan organization charged with the task of estimating the status of the economy based on income tax and sales tax revenue.
Projected revenue estimates were larger than the actual revenue collected in July, August and September, causing the economy to suffer.
Revenue collections since the attacks of Sept. 11 are unknown as of yet; however, McCallum said the economy has not fared well since the attacks.
The Fiscal Bureau has made no concrete estimate as to the revenue shortfall since the attacks, and director Bob Lang said he will not make any estimates until data from July through December is available. Therefore, estimates will not be available until after the holiday season.
Despite McCallum’s refusal to call a special session without concrete information, he said he will take steps to alleviate the problem while he waits for the statistics.
In early November, McCallum instituted a hiring freeze of government employees to save money.
“The hiring freeze exempts positions in the areas of safety and public health, as well as the University of Wisconsin system,” McCallum said after announcing the UW system’s exemption.
The hiring freeze is the first step McCallum has taken to save money and prevent further damage to the economy. Today McCallum is expected to announce various measures to alleviate the failing economy.