Press Release
May 31, 2010

New Ad Shows How Milwaukee County Taxpayers Left Holding Bag for Walker’s Mismanagement

Job Creation and Public Services Cut, While Property Taxes and Walker's Paycheck Jump

MADISON, Wis. — Milwaukee County Executive Scott Walker’s failed leadership and the disastrous outcome is the subject of an online video produced by One Wisconsin Now as part of its “Scott Walker Failure Files” timeline and information warehouse.

The ad is available at: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WFmYpUbsGE0.

“Scott Walker’s skewed priorities and incompetent leadership have been a disaster for Milwaukee County,” said Scot Ross, One Wisconsin Now Executive Director. “One Wisconsin Now’s video is just a sample of how Scott Walker has Milwaukeeans paying more but getting so much less than they deserve – and that is no joke.”

The ad, which satirizes Walker’s much derided and borrowed “Brown Bag” gimmick, highlights the following issues and includes full documentation, including:

Issue: “Scott Walker hiked Milwaukee County property taxes 17 percent…while cutting public safety officers and vital services”

Documentation: Despite his claims of fiscal austerity, under Scott Walker county spending has increased 35 percent. The county property tax levy has increased 17 percent and the 2010 county budget increased by $1.5 billion – an increase of 6 percent. Walker’s 2010 budget also continued his yearly effort to reduce the numbers of sheriff’s deputies and corrections officers by proposing staff reductions yet again. [Milwaukee County Executive Budgets, 2003-2010]

Issue: “Scott Walker protected political cronies…while patients were sexually assaulted at the County Mental Health Center”

Documentation: After calls by Milwaukee County Supervisors for Walker to fire the administrator of the county mental health complex, John Chianelli, over his mishandling of patient sexual assaults, Walker defended him. Chianelli was quoted as saying the rationale for the county’s mixed-gender wards was a “trade-off” that avoided more fights common to all-male wards but increased the chance of sexual attacks in mixed-sex wards. Walker defended the practice and as of yet has refused to fire Chianelli. [Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, 05/10/2010]

Issue: “Scott Walker slashed funds for Milwaukee County job creation…while giving himself a $50,000 raise”

Documentation: Walker reduced what had been $18-19 million each year in county spending on economic development programs when he took office (2002-2006), to just over $1 million in his proposed 2010 budget. In 2008, Walker announced during his re-election campaign that he’s increasing his salary by $50,000 – a 73 percent increase. [Milwaukee County Executive Recommended Budgets, 2003-2010; Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, 03/19/2008]

“Every dime that Scott Walker mismanaged is money that couldn’t go to job creation, health care and police and fire protection,” said Ross. “And Milwaukee County is left holding the bag for Scott Walker’s utter failure.”

Walker has spent over $300,000 in advertisements using his “brown bag” gimmick, which according to the “Eye On Wisconsin” blog, is recycled from the 1998 U.S. Senate campaign of Republican George Voinovich.

Further information about the mismanagement and skewed priorities of Scott Walker, which have devastated Milwaukee County, is available at: http://www.scottwalkerfailurefiles.com.

# # #

One Wisconsin Now is a statewide communications network specializing in effective earned media and online organizing to advance progressive leadership and values.

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