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Governor Supplemental Budget Proposal
Governor Mark Dayton released his supplemental budget proposal which both spends and saves portions of the $329 million surplus for the remaining year of the 2-year budget. He would spend an additional $36 million on education.
Several highlights of the E-12 budget proposal:
Provides $18 per pupil in state aid for the 2018-19 school year in the Safe School Levy, which allows spending on both mental health services and school building enhancements. Then beginning in FY20, the Safe School Levy will be increased by $36 to $72 per pupil, most of which will be levy collected through property taxes. All districts are guaranteed a minimum of $30,000 a year. Currently, this levy is not equalized with state aid to lower the high taxpayer cost in low-property wealth districts. With this increase to the levy, the proposal equalizes the levy at 60% of the state average adjusted net tax capacity.
Provides $16 million in next year to reduce the special education cross subsidy, the unfunded cost of mandated special education services. This funding is ongoing with $43 million in the next biennium.
Removes the cap on alternative compensation known as Q-comp so all districts have access to this teacher development and evaluation funding.
Makes permanent the funding for the new School Readiness Plus early learning program which was funded with one-time dollars this year. Then beginning in FY20, funding for this program and the voluntary preK will increase by 5% a year so more districts can participate, and more children can be served.
Allows early learning scholarships to be used by children from birth to 3. Currently, the scholarships are for 3 and 4-year-old children.
Through this proposal, the Governor is creating new ongoing funding streams which will amount to an increase of $121 million for education in the next biennium. The Republican House and Senate will likely resist new ongoing spending in this non-budget year. They tend to prefer grants and other one-time funding. However, the special education cross subsidy, Qcomp, equalization and early learning are ongoing concerns and need stable and predictable funding streams.
We will see the House and Senate finance bills by April 20, which is the committee deadline for finance bills.
As always, see
Brad's Blog for more detailed information on what is happening at the Capitol.
If you have any questions or comments, please don't hesitate to contact me.
Schools for Equity in Education
Director of Communications and Community Outreach