APPLETON, Wis. (WFRV) Governor Walker is reflecting on the first half of his first term, but not everyone has fond memories.
In a statement released Thursday, Walker said Wisconsin was facing a $3.6 billion budget deficit when he took office. Now, the state has a surplus of $341 million.
Local democrats and republicans are leery about the Governor keeping one of his campaign promises: Walker pledged to create 250,000 new jobs by the end of this first term. Only 37,000 have been added since he took office.
"There are a lot of things that can happen in the next two years, but that is going to be very, very difficult I think," says Republican Representative Dean Kaufert. Democratic Representative Penny Bernard Schaber agrees, saying, "the Governor had a good start, not good enough though."
Below is Walker's full statement:
Two years ago, Wisconsin was facing a $3.6 billion budget deficit and the state had an unemployment rate of 7.5 percent. Today, Wisconsin has a $341 million surplus and we set money aside in the rainy day fund for the first time in two consecutive years. The unemployment rate is 6.7 percent.
In 2010, a mere 10 percent of employers surveyed said the state was headed in the right direction. Chief Executive Magazine ranked Wisconsin as the 41st state for business ranking.
In 2012, 94 percent said Wisconsin was headed in the right direction. Chief Executive Magazine moved our ranking up to 20th, while CNBC listed us at 17th and Site Selector Magazine as 13th.
New business formations are up 11.1 percent from this time two years ago.
In the second half of my term, I look forward to working with the people of Wisconsin, from workers to educators and job creators to legislators, to continue moving our state forward.