Explain It To Me Shared Revenue: What it is and why it matters

Oct 14, 2022 | Wisconsin Voices Blog

From IRG Executive Vice President Chris Reader:


Shared Revenue is the tax money that the state collects through sales and income taxes and then doles out around the state to local governments like cities, towns, villages, and counties. State taxpayers send over $1.5 billion each budget to local governments through shared revenue.


  • What happened? Speaking to reporters this week, Gov. Evers outlined that one of his top priorities for the next state budget, should he win re-election, will be sending 10% more shared revenue to municipalities.


  • Why is it important? This large amount of state spending makes up a large portion of local governments’ budgets each year. Advocates for higher government spending always say more money is needed – through higher payments from the state, higher local property taxes, or higher local sales taxes.


  • What’s next? Lawmakers and the governor will decide the amount of shared revenue for the next state budget as part of the budget process that begins in January. Before settling on blanket increases, lawmakers should do a top-down analysis of spending to make sure all tax funds are appropriately being spent. Government needs to be smart with the taxpayer dollars it receives.