$4M slipped in state bud­get would ben­e­fit Repub­li­can mega-donor

Wisconsin Gazette - - Front Page -

Alexan­der Field, a tiny air­port in Wis­con­sin Rapids, is slated to get $4 mil­lion in im­prove­ments, thanks to a last-minute item slipped into the bud­get by the Repub­li­can­con­trolled Joint Fi­nance Com­mit­tee.

The air­port is a 20-minute drive from the lux­u­ri­ous Sand Val­ley Golf Re­sort, which was cre­ated by Repub­li­can mega-donor Michael Keiser. Since the re­sort’s open­ing, Alexan­der Field has seen an un­prece­dented in­flux of pri­vate jets.

Keiser has given at least $65,000 to Scott Walker and Wis­con­sin Repub­li­cans since 2012. He gave $25,000 to the state Repub­li­can Party in Fe­bru­ary alone, ac­cord­ing to records re­viewed by The As­so­ci­ated Press.

Walker did not in­clude the $4 mil­lion re­quest in the bud­get he sub­mit­ted just three weeks prior to its in­ser­tion, lead­ing crit­ics to charge he was try­ing to hide it. AP’s at­tempts to speak to the gov­er­nor’s of­fice about the bud­get item were un­suc­cess­ful.

“It sure looks like Mr. Keiser’s cam­paign con­tri­bu­tions to Scott Walker and Repub­li­cans teed up mil­lions in tax­payer-funded im­prove­ments to help bring cor­po­rate-jet­fer­ried golfers to his Wis­con­sin cour­ses,” said Mike Browne of the pro­gres­sive ad­vo­cacy group One Wis­con­sin Now.

“Mean­while, the rest of us will con­tinue to have to deal with crum­bling roads and bridges and de­layed projects as these same Repub­li­cans take a bud­get mul­li­gan and refuse to fix the state trans­porta­tion fund­ing cri­sis.”

— WiG and AP re­ports

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