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Wisconsin Spotlight | Sept 23, 2020

MADISON — Do-nothing, Secretary of State Doug La Follette is seeking a 56 percent increase in his do-nothing office’s budget.

The Democrat’s 2021-23 spending request calls for a $314,500 increase, to $880,500 over the biennium.

That’s a lot of money for an agency that has had most of its official duties transferred to other agencies, at a cost savings to taxpayers.

La Follette, 80, who has served as Wisconsin’s Secretary of State since 1983, says he “seeks to restore resources eliminated under 2015 Act 55…”

The secretary wants to hire two full-time equivalent employees — a deputy secretary and an office operations associate position. Today, La Follette presides over a staff of one. He doesn’t need additional employees to handle the light work he has affixing the state seal and attending meetings of a land board that doubles as a climate change alarmist group, but La Follette wants his power back.

His need to grow his corner of government would cost $84,900 in state program revenue and $113,300 program revenue in 2021-22 and 2022-23, respectively, for the new positions, according to the proposal.

“The amount requested reflects nine (9) months of salary and fringe expenses for the new positions in the first year and twelve (12) months in the second year…” the request states.

More state employees, of course, means more pens, papers, rubber stamps — and grander office space. La Follette is seeking nearly $100,000 in funds for supplies and services.

“The one-time financing includes amounts necessary to move the Office to a location of suitable size and amenities to serve the public and provide access to records, and to accommodate the number of staff within the Office under this request,” the document  states.

As he looks to expand his outmoded agency, Big Government Doug La Follette insists the mission of the office is to “provide high-quality, cost-effective service to Wisconsin’s citizens, governments, businesses, and visitors.”

While he doesn’t have enough work to justify his own position, the entrenched Secretary of State says the office is “committed to effectively utilizing personnel, fiscal and technological resources…”

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