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Legislative Update

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The following are summaries of governors' budget requests for precollegiate education and highlights of proposals that rank high on the states' education agendas.

IOWA

Governor: Terry E. Branstad (R)

FY 1995 proposed state budget: $3.64 billion
FY 1995 proposed K-12 budget: $1.27 billion
FY 1994 K-12 budget: $1.23 billion
Percent change K-12 budget: +3.25 percent

Highlights

  • Governor has proposed establishing a "school and community planning program,'' designed to bolster a variety of local education-reform initiatives.
  • State law restricts increases in basic state aid to elementary and secondary schools--excluding some categorical aid programs--to 2.5 percent per year.

NEW HAMPSHIRE

Governor: Steven Merrill (R)

FY 95 state budget: $938.8 million
FY 95 K-12 budget: $84 million
FY 94 K-12 budget: $93.2 million
Percent change K-12 budget: -9.9 percent

Highlights

  • Education budget is essentially level-funded. Larger fiscal 1994 figure reflects a one-time, $10 million addition approved as part of a budget compromise last year.
  • Governor has vowed to veto any legislative efforts to create a statewide property tax or other broad-based tax in response to a recent state supreme-court decision declaring New Hampshire's school-finance system unconstitutional. However, Governor supports examining how to reconfigure state-aid distribution to help property-poor districts.

TENNESSEE

Governor: Ned McWherter (D)

FY 1995 proposed state budget: $8.5 billion
FY 1995 proposed K-12 budget: $1.83 billion
FY 1994 K-12 budget: $1.71 billion
Percent change K-12 budget: +7.6 percent

Highlights

  • Proposed budget includes $125 million in new funding for state's 21st Century Schools Program, which is designed to help equalize spending.
  • Governor proposed using $10 million from the equalization program for educational technology.

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