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Published in Print: July 8, 1998, as Legislative Update

Legislative Update

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The following are summaries of final fiscal 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.

HAWAII

Gov. Benjamin J. Cayetano

Governor:
Benjamin J. Cayetano (D)

FY 1999 state budget:
$5.73 billion

FY 1999 K-12 budget:
$1.51 billion

FY 1998 K-12 budget:
$1.14 billion

Percent change K-12 budget:
+3.2 percent

Estimated enrollment:
189,281

Highlights:

  • Fiscal 1999 is second year of two-year Hawaii budget that was passed last year. In subsequent budget negotiations this year, however, legislators proposed cutting the fiscal 1999 K-12 budget. Ultimately, they and Gov. Cayetano agreed not to make cutbacks, but instead to add school funding.
  • K-12 budget total includes $28 million from state health department to cover special education and other services and $20 million from accounting and general services department for school busing.
  • In addition to regular appropriation, Gov. Cayetano announced that state will give $11 million in emergency funding to education department in fiscal 1999. Department had requested $30 million to pay for operating new schools and to meet court order for improving special education.

MISSOURI

Governor:

Mel Carnahan (D)

FY 1999 state budget:
$15.44 billion

FY 1999 K-12 budget:
$3.65 billion

FY 1998 K-12 budget:
$3.53 billion

Percent change K-12 budget:
+3.4 percent

Estimated enrollment:
890,606

Highlights:

  • Lawmakers approved plan to distribute $163 million in anticipated savings from pending settlement of St. Louis school desegregation case to schools across Missouri. Package also would establish Missouri's first charter schools, in St. Louis and Kansas City, and calls for changing the way the St. Louis district is governed. The plan is contingent on settlement of the case, which is expected next year.
  • Fiscal 1999 budget includes $54.6 million in state funding aimed at boosting spending equity among Missouri's 525 districts.
  • Budget also includes $16 million to pay for student transportation, as well as programs for students in special education and gifted programs.
  • State will foot the bill for 5,460 students expected to take Advanced Placement exams in coming school year, or offer to pay for up to three credit hours at a nearby college or university for some high school students.

OHIO

Governor:
George V. Voinovich (R)

FY 1999 state budget:
$19.25 billion

FY 1999 K-12 budget:
$6.09 billion

FY 1998 K-12 budget:
$5.69 billion

Percent change K-12 budget:
+7 percent

Estimated enrollment:
1.8 million

Highlights:

  • State now in second year of biennial budget passed last year.
  • Budget totals include $714 million in lottery proceeds applied to education spending.
  • Under overhaul of state education finance system in February, 75 percent of Ohio students will attend districts that receive budget increase of 6 percent or greater in fiscal 1999. No districts will lose money. Ohio's long-term school funding outlook remains cloudy, however, thanks to state voters' rejection this year of plan to pay for school spending increases through sales-tax hike.

SOUTH CAROLINA

Governor:
David Beasley (R)

FY 1999 state budget:
$4.58 billion

FY 1999 K-12 budget:
$1.54 billion

FY 1998 K-12 budget:
$1.44 billion

Percent change K-12 budget:
+6.9 increase

Estimated enrollment:
649,173

Highlights:

  • Budget includes $20 million to reduce class size to 15-1 student-teacher ratio in disadvantaged schools.
  • In fiscal 1999, state will spend $1 million for teacher professional development and hiring of principal-mentors and master-teachers in disadvantaged districts.
  • State will spend $11.5 million to upgrade state academic standards and test students in all grade levels in fiscal year that began July 1.

Vol. 17, Issue 42, Page 23

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