Legislative Update

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The following are summaries of final actions by legislatures on education-related matters.


Governor: Cecil D. Andrus (D)
FY 1993 state budget:
$1 billion
FY 1993 K-12 budget:
$497 million
FY 1992 K-12 budget:
$487.5 million
Percent change K-12 budget:
+1.9 percent


  • Legislature spent much of session in dispute with Governor over its education budget, which was $5 million less than the Governor's proposal and did not include any funding for a school-reform committee and the pilot projects it supports. Final budget still fell $5 million short of the Governor's proposal, but includes a $2-million allocation for the committee.
  • Legislature did not fund Governor's "Strong Start'' reform plan, expecting the reform committee to incorporate some of the proposal's elements into its pilot projects.


Governor: Brereton Jones (D)
FY 1993 state budget:
$4.62 billion
FY 1993 K-12 budget:
$2.06 billion
FY 1992 K-12 budget:
$2.07 billion
Percent change K-12 budget:
-0.5 percent


  • Despite slight overall funding drop, basic state aid to districts will rise by about 3 percent over fiscal 1992 and another 2 percent in the second year of the biennium.
  • Among reform programs enacted in 1990, extended school services were cut by 40 percent in the two-year budget. Lawmakers also lowered their goals for forward-funding a school-technology network and school-incentive programs that are still being designed.
  • K-12 funding would rise to $2.16 billion in fiscal 1994, a 4.8 percent increase over 1993. Funding for the state education department would rise by 3 percent in the budget's final year, compared with a 6 percent cut for fiscal 1993.


Governor: George S. Mickelson (R)
FY 1993 state budget:
$536.3 million
FY 1993 K-12 budget:
$153.9 million
FY 1992 K-12 budget:
$141.3 million
Percent change K-12 budget:
+8.9 percent


  • Legislature approved adding eight more sites to the initial eight pilot projects across the state started last year to test ways to modernize K-12 education in such areas as technology, curriculum, and parent and community involvement.
  • Governor vetoed a bill that would have altered the state's "report cards'' of public-school performance by providing that report cards be issued on a district, rather than school-building, basis, with reports averaged so that there was one for each district's elementary, middle, and high schools.
  • Governor signed legislation requiring all elementary and secondary schools to promote sexual abstinence, adding the topic to several others required for "moral instruction'' by schools.
  • Legislature approved Governor's proposal to make more funding available to school districts by giving them their state-aid payments in 12 monthly installments, instead of three lump sums. If the funds are invested properly, local school boards could earn an additional $500,000 in interest income under the new procedure, officials estimate.

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