[2/21/17] Legislatures Continue To Grapple With Plans To Fund Basic Education

Posted in Education

Legislatures are busy in Olympia trying to solve the states financial problems.

Though there is more revenue than ever, lawmakers say that’s not enough to meet a court mandate to fully fund basic education by 2018. And, there are key differences between what Democrats and Republicans have proposed so far.

The Republic plan would rely on a levy swap- implementing a new statewide property tax of $1.80 per $1,000 in assessed value. That would raise about $2 billion in revenue over the next two years. At the same time, the GOP plan would eliminate the local school district maintenance and operation levies, which would reduce property taxes by about $2.4 billion statewide.

Democratic lawmakers haven’t put forth a specific proposal for how they would raise money to pay for school fixes. They have suggested the state should look at several potential sources of revenue including a carbon tax, a capital gains tax, ending tax breaks, adjusting the statewide property tax and changing the state’s business and occupation tax system.

Republicans would send their tax plan to voters for approval this November. The Democratic plan wouldn’t require voter approval.

Either plan would require bi-artisan support. Something 12th District Senator, Brad Hawkins, says has been in short supply…

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You’re invited to tune in Friday morning at 7:45 when we air our weekly legislative update as we speak with the 12th District Legislatures by telephone from Olympia.

If you have a specific questions or issue you would like us to pose to the legislatures, you can send it by email to air@kozi.com