Published March 1, 2002 | March 2002 issue
According to the U.S. Census Bureau, Wisconsin state and local governments spent fully one-third more than the U.S. average on highway and road building and upkeep over the last decade. On a per capita basis, taxpayers spent as much for highways and streets as they did for local police and fire services, parks, recreation and farm programs combined.
The state also spent 25 percent more than the national average per resident on higher education; only 13 states spent more than Wisconsin. And the state ranked seventh in spending for K-12 education, 16 percent above the national average. In addition, Wisconsin's classrooms are among the least crowded, ranking 11th in the nation in pupil-teacher ratio.