Walker says it would be 'unwise' to reject self-insurance

File photo (WLUK/Scott Hurley)

MADISON (AP) -- Gov. Scott Walker tells The Associated Press it would be "unwise" for the Republican-controlled Legislature to reject his proposal to switch state workers to a self-insurance model.

Walker spoke to the AP after Republican Assembly Majority Leader Jim Steineke told University of Wisconsin-Madison professors that the proposal is unlikely to pass the Legislature.

Walker's budget assumes the move would save the state $60 million over two years, while others say the estimate is overly optimistic. Walker would use the savings to help pay for a K-12 funding increase.

Walker tells AP lawmakers would be "unwise to throw away $60 million." Walker says he stands behind the cost-savings estimate and calls it realistic.

The proposal is part of Walker's state budget. Steineke says the Legislature's budget committee will likely kill it.

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