Gov. Scott Walker’s budget proposal includes decreasing the total budget for district attorney’s offices across the state.
Rock County District Attorney David O’Leary said Walker’s budget proposal is a disappointing surprise, given the caseload crisis he and other district attorneys across the state are experiencing.
District attorneys around the state had requested 84.4 new prosecutor positions, according to a budget request released in September. The office’s total budget request was $125,661,100, a roughly 26-percent increase from the current budget.
Instead, Walker’s budget is proposing cuts.
Those include eliminating positions paid for through grants, most of which have already dried up, said O’ Leary, who is also president of the Wisconsin District Attorney’s Association.
Walker’s budget proposal also recommends adding deputy district attorneys, but does not detail where the money for those positions would come from.
According to the budget in brief document released Tuesday, the change would increase from five to seven the number of deputy district attorneys for a county with a population of more than 500,000.
But the budget itself does not allocate any money to pay for those positions.
Walker is also proposing cutting pay progression for district attorneys, O’Leary said.
“He has basically deleted that incentive,” he said, “for professionals to stay in our profession.”Follow @“erikastrebel”