Published Online: May 27, 1998
Published in Print: May 27, 1998, as Legislative Update


Legislative Update

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The following are summaries of final 1999 budgets for schools and highlights of education-related action during legislative sessions. Budget totals for K-12 education include money for state education administration, but do not include federal, flow-through dollars.


Gary E. Johnson (R)

FY 1999 state budget:
$3.15 billion

FY 1999 K-12 budget:
$1.47 billion

FY 1998 K-12 budget:
$1.37 billion

Percent change K-12 budget:
+7.5 percent

Estimated enrollment:


  • Budget includes 9 percent pay increase for teachers and an average 6.5 percent increase for other school employees.
  • Efforts to revamp state's charter school law to expand number of such schools failed in legislative session.
  • Governor signed open-enrollment bill that will make it easier for parents to send children to public schools outside their districts.
  • Legislature rejected Mr. Johnson's proposal to create a state school board appointed by the governor. Currently, 10 members are elected and five are appointed by governor.


Gov. James S. Gilmore III (R)

FY 1999-2000 state budget:
$20 billion

FY 1999-2000 K-12 budget:
$7 billion

FY 1997-1998 K-12 budget:
$6.1 billion

Percent change K-12 budget:
+14 percent

Estimated enrollment:
1.1 million


  • Biennial budget includes $231 million for anticipated student-enrollment hikes and $97 million to increase teachers' salaries over the next two years.
  • Budget includes $29.1 million for hiring 600 new teachers over next two years and $28 million to hire more K-3 teachers to reduce class sizes.
  • In special session, legislature passed governor's request for $110 million to help pay for school construction and maintenance.
  • Mr. Gilmore also signed bill that provides $200,000 in seed money in 1999 for communities and districts to launch charter schools.

Vol. 17, Issue 37, Page 14

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