Public Policy Forum Research

 

The Public Policy Forum aims to build public understanding of local government finances through comprehensive fiscal assessments and annual budget briefs. These reports shed light on the state of governmental fiscal affairs and their associated impacts on valued public services. Recent publications include in-depth financial reviews of Milwaukee County, the City of Milwaukee, Milwaukee Area Technical College, the Milwaukee Metropolitan Sewerage District, and Milwaukee Public Schools. The Forum has complemented these projects with annual budget reviews for two of the area’s largest taxing bodies, Milwaukee County and the City of Milwaukee. In addition to these published reports, the Forum regularly works with local government agencies, providing more focused analyses in areas that can improve financial strength.

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May, 2017
Our annual review of the Milwaukee Public Schools superintendent's proposed budget finds that 2018 will be a year of "retrenchment" for MPS as it trims positions and restores funding to retirement and capital debt obligations. Significant cuts to...
May, 2017
Our latest research on intergovernmental service sharing suggests that the cities of Oak Creek and South Milwaukee could improve public health services in both communities at no extra cost should they decide to pursue health department consolidation...
May, 2017
Our latest research finds that addressing the repair and replacement needs of sewer, water, and wastewater treatment assets owned by Milwaukee's largest governments will require a substantial taxpayer and ratepayer commitment in the coming years....
Oct, 2016
Our analysis of the City of Milwaukee proposed budget finds the City faces familiar challenges in 2017, including flat intergovernmental revenues and growing Milwaukee Police Department (MPD) expenditure needs. Despite these challenges, we find that...
Oct, 2016
Our analysis of the Milwaukee County Executive's recommended budget focuses primarily on the proposed $60 vehicle registration fee (VRF). We analyze the factors that have created the County's 2017 budget challenges and the alternatives that may...
Sep, 2016
Our new research finds that the City of Milwaukee’s financial outlook is much improved from the depths of the recent economic recession. The report also suggests, however, that “fundamental fiscal change” will be needed if City leaders wish to make...

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