Amending the Bill on Tax-Free Savings Accounts
Below are the votes on the major amendments to a bill intended to
create tax incentives to save for K-12 education costs in private and
Block grants: States could choose one of three options to receive federal K-12 aid: through Title I and other categorical grant programs, as they now do; through state block grants; or through block grants targeted specifically for school districts. Special education dollars would be exempt from the changes.
- Sponsor: Sen. Slade Gorton, R-Wash.
- Vote: 50-49.
National testing: The amendment would forbid the development of proposed new national tests past Sept. 30 without the explicit authorization of Congress.
- Sponsor: Sen. John Ashcroft, R-Mo.
- Vote: 52-47.
Merit pay: States with teacher-competency testing would receive half of future funding increases in the federal professional-development program to pay for teacher merit-pay programs. The program's fiscal 1998 funding was $335 million.
- Sponsors: Sens. Alfonse M. D'Amato, R-N.Y., and Connie Mack, R-Fla.
- Vote: 63-35.
Single-sex classrooms: States would be allowed to use grants from the federal Title VI program to create classrooms segregated by gender.
- Sponsor: Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison, R-Texas.
- Vote: 69-29.
100,000 new teachers: The amendment would have recruited new teachers by promising to forgive their student loans.
- Sponsor: Sen. Edward M. Kennedy, D-Mass.
- Vote: 56-41.
School construction: The federal government would have underwritten $3.3 billion in interest on school bonds over the next two years in a bill that would have replaced the Republican package of tax incentives for education savings.
- Sponsor: Sen. Carol Moseley-Braun, D-Ill.
- Vote: 56-42.
Restricted tax incentive: The amendment would have restricted spending from the tax-sheltered education savings accounts to higher education expenses.
- Sponsor: Sen. John Glenn, D-Ohio.
- Vote: 60-38.