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State Supreme Court to Legislators: Find a Way to Fully Fund Education

Posted by Kim Justice at Jan 10, 2014 12:45 AM |
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Today the State Supreme Court issued an order to lawmakers to step-up their efforts to fully funding public schools by 2018 by demonstrating "through immediate, concrete action, that [the state] is making real and measurable progress, not simply promises.” 

As the court pointed out, the state’s initial investment of $1 billion last session is meaningful, but insufficient. It is merely a drop in the bucket compared to our full funding obligation of $4.5 billion per biennium (see graphic).

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Additionally, the court order finds that the state has fallen short in addressing teacher pay, referencing the suspension of cost-of-living increases. Investing in teachers is fundamental to quality education, and is estimated to cost an additional $1 billion per year. 

The court orders lawmakers to submit a plan by the end of April detailing how they will fully fund basic education.

As we stated in our brief, A Paramount Duty: Funding Education for McCleary and Beyond,the state must fulfill its obligation to fully fund public schools (including increased pay for teachers), while also maintaining key investments in health care, public safety, and affordable college. There is no getting around it now—legislators must raise new revenue to meet this challenge. 

 

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2015-17 Legislative Agenda

Our 2015-17 Legislative Agenda calls for an equitable and sustainable revenue system in addition to state investments that will promote a world-class education system, sustain a strong, inclusive middle class, produce high quality, living wage jobs, and ensure equal opportunity to live healthy and productive lives.  Take a closer look here.

Budget Matters 2014

Thank you to those who made Budget Matters 2014 a success! Stay tuned for pictures, video clips and PowerPoints from this year's conference.

Legislative Testimony

Senior Budget Analyst Kim Justice recently testified before Senate Ways and Means against a bill that would fund education at the expense of other budget investments. Watch it here. 

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