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Legislative Update

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The following are summaries of governors' budget requests for precollegiate education and final action by legislatures on education-related matters.

LOUISIANA

Governor: Edwin W. Edwards (D)
FY 1995 state budget: $11.8 billion
FY 1995 K-12 budget: $1.83 billion
FY 1994 K-12 budget: $1.79 billion
Percent change K-12 budget: +2.2 percent

Highlights:

  • While the Governor has signed the budget, it must still be approved by a state revenue-estimating panel later this month. The panel's action should not affect education funding.
  • Governor's proposed 5 percent pay hike for teachers and other school employees--contingent on potential gambling revenue from land-based and riverboat casinos--is still in flux after state officials ordered that a casino contract be rebid.

MICHIGAN

Governor: John Engler (R)
FY 1995 state budget: $12.1 billion
FY 1995 K-12 budget: $6.7 billion
FY 1994 K-12 budget: $2.8 billion
Percent change K-12 budget: +139 percent

Highlights:

  • The K-12 budget total reflects passage of a new school-finance program that reduces local property taxes and replaces the local funds with state aid, much of which will be raised through an increase in the state sales tax.
  • The 1995 budget represents a $300 million increase in overall state spending on schools as compared with the previous year.

MINNESOTA

Governor: Arne Carlson (R)
FY 1995 state budget: $8.6 billion
FY 1995 K-12 budget: $2.75 billion
FY 1994 K-12 budget: $2.64 billion
Percent change K-12 budget: +4.2 percent

Highlights:

  • The state board of education and the state education department are moving toward adoption of performance-based graduation standards after the legislature scrapped a measure that would have required them to submit the standards for the lawmakers' approval.
  • Legislature set aside $20 million for magnet schools in metropolitan areas and created an office of desegregation in the education department to coordinate district desegregation plans.
  • Legislature approved an omnibus education bill that included several school-safety provisions, including a measure requiring police to share some data regarding juvenile offenders with schools.

MISSOURI

Governor: Mel Carnahan (D)
FY 1995 state budget: $5.24 billion
FY 1995 K-12 budget: $1.99 billion
FY 1994 K-12 budget: $1.77 billion
Percent change K-12 budget: +12.1 percent

Highlights:

  • Legislature approved establishment of a riverboat-gambling system, stipulating that a portion of the profits will be used to finance school construction projects.

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