Back in late February, a new contract document revealed that the Department of Health and Human Services would be paying $60 million for the computer cloud that supports back-end data sharing for HealthCare.gov and state Obamacare marketplaces, more than five times the amount in the original contract. This week HHS revealed that the contract has been further revised — to roughly $120 million, now more than ten times the original $11 million value of the contract when Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services first awarded it in 2011.
In most professions, when you end up spending ten times what you budgeted, the consequences are swift and severe. Heads roll. Responsibilities are reassigned. Budgetary authority gets yanked. This, of course, is not how things work in the federal government.
Our first bit of good news for the states: This week, the Wisconsin State Assembly will approve another big tax cut, amounting to $541 million and give Scott Walker another feather in his cap as he heads into his reelection campaign:
The tax decreases — the third round of cuts by Republicans in less than a year — passed 17-15 with GOP Sen. Dale Schultz of Richland Center joining all Democrats in voting against the proposal. The proposal now goes to the Assembly, which passed a different version of the tax cuts last month with two Democrats joining all Republicans in supporting it.
With growing tax collections now expected to give the state a $1 billion budget surplus in June 2015, Walker’s bill will cut property and income taxes for families and businesses, and zero out all income taxes for manufacturers in the state.
By the way, if you are a working class African-American in Milwaukee, why exactly would you want to vote against a Governor who is helping with the two things most necessary for you to enter the middle-class -- making homeownership affordable (by lowering property taxes) and generating manufacturing jobs? I mean, other than pure tribal loyalty to the Democratic Party.