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Legislative Update

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The following are summaries of final actions by legislatures on education-related matters.

ALABAMA

Governor: Guy Hunt (R)

FY 1993 state budget: $7.3 billion
FY 1993 K-12 budget: $1.76 billion
FY 1992 K-12 budget: $1.66 billion
Percent change K-12 budget: +6 percent

Highlights:

  • A $423-million education-reform and tax package died in the legislature on the last day of the session. The package, which included about two dozen bills providing for educational accountability and new taxes, had been proposed by a coalition of education and business leaders and had support from the Governor.
  • Figure for total state budget includes earmarked funds that the state does not break down by source. The monies include federal and local funds as well as state revenues.

NEBRASKA

Governor: Ben Nelson (D)

FY 1992-93 state budget: $3.1 billion
FY 1992-93 K-12 budget: $961 million

Highlights:

  • Legislature adopted and voters approved constitutional amendment that allows real and personal property to be treated separately. Amendment ends uncertainty in state taxation system caused by several court rulings.
  • Updated budget for fiscal 1993 includes $320,000 for early-childhood education, $150,000 for an accountability commission, and $85,000 for multicultural education.

NEW HAMPSHIRE

Governor: Judd Gregg (R)

FY 1993 state budget: $720 million
FY 1993 K-12 budget: $47.1 million
FY 1992 K-12 budget: $47.1 milion
Percent change K-12 budget: No change

Highlights:

  • Legislature passed a bill limiting local districts' financial liability for educating disabled students to 3.5 times the state's average annual per-pupil spending, plus 20 percent of further costs up to 10 times the average.
  • Senate passed a joint resolution requiring the state education department to develop a computer-education program for all public schools.
  • Legislature established a study committee to review the effectiveness of the distribution formula used in the state's foundation-aid program. The state's school-funding system, which relies far more heavily on local property-tax revenues than any other state, is currently being challenged in court on equity grounds by a group of low-wealth districts.

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