State of the States
Gov. Hoeven Cites Bright Fiscal Outlook
To help North Dakota continue on its path toward economic growth, Gov. John Hoeven is proposing to spend an additional $75 million on education over the next four years, in equal installments beginning with fiscal 2006.
“If we’re going to create the best business climate to create higher-paying jobs and retain our young people, we’re going to have to build a workforce prepared for the opportunities of the future,” the Republican governor said in his State of the State Address on Jan. 4. “That means the best schools and the brightest teachers educating the best and brightest students.”
In his $2 billion state budget proposal for fiscal years 2006 and 2007, which was issued last month, he proposed some $662 million for education, a 5 percent increase over the appropriation in the current biennial budget.
The additional money would be used to increase salaries for teachers and equalize funding across the state’s 213 school districts.
Over the past two years, the state has boasted thousands of new jobs, the nation’s highest personal-income growth, and hundreds of new businesses, Mr. Hoeven said. U.S. Census data show that North Dakota’s population is growing for the first time since the mid-1990s, and the state predicts an added $80 million in revenues this year.
Vol. 24, Issue 18, Page 22