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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.

FLORIDA

Governor: Lawton Chiles (D)

FY 1995 proposed state budget: $38 billion
FY 1995 proposed K-12 budget: $6.99 billion
FY 1994 K-12 budget: $6.56 billion
Percent change K-12 budget: +6.5 percent

Highlights

  • Governor proposes a $121 million package to protect schools and prevent student crime, including after-school and weekend programs for middle school children.
  • Budget proposal also would increase prekindergarten slots for 3- and 4-year-olds and add two days of teacher staff development.
  • Legislature is considering proposals to require Holocaust and genocide curricula and to allow student-led prayer.

NEW JERSEY

Governor: Christine Todd Whitman (R)

FY 1995 proposed state budget: $15.4 billion
FY 1995 proposed K-12 budget: $4.03 billion
FY 1994 K-12 budget: $4.05 billion
Percent change K-12 budget: -.05 percent

Highlights

  • Governor's budget plan would shift $28.5 million in state aid from wealthier to poorer school districts.
  • Governor recommends 10 percent income-tax cut; to help offset the reduction, teachers and other public employees would have to contribute more to their pension funds.
  • Governor also proposes eliminating state department of higher education.
  • Legislature is considering a proposal to mandate a Holocaust and genocide curriculum.

PENNSYLVANIA

Governor: Robert P. Casey (D)

FY 1995 proposed state budget: $15.7 billion
FY 1995 proposed K-12 budget: $5.4 billion
FY 1994 K-12 budget: $5.2 billion
Percent change K-12 budget: +3.8 percent

Highlights

  • Governor's budget plan would provide $81 million in additional funding for lower-income districts and a $27 million poverty supplement for districts where at least 35 percent of students come from families that receive welfare payments.
  • Governor also proposes a $4 million boost for so-called "financially distressed'' districts.

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