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CCM: Connecticut Education Funding Lags by $763 Million

The lobbying group for towns wants the state to limit education mandates and increase education aid.

The state’s main lobbying group for towns is urging Connecticut lawmakers to increase education funding to ease property tax burdens in communities.

In a report issued Tuesday the Connecticut Conference of Municipalities said the state is underfunding local education mandates by $763 million this year alone.

CCM is gearing up for the next session of Connecticut’s General Assembly, which begins early in 2013, where it will push lawmakers to increase state aid for education.

In a press conference yesterday at the state capitol, Jim Finley, CCM’s executive director, said the state has “chronically underfunded” education grants to towns for years, forcing local communities to increase property taxes to pay for schools.

CCM’s lobbying efforts this year will be twofold. It wants the state to back off some education mandates that are not being properly funded and it wants the state to increase education funding overall to towns.

"Municipalities across Connecticut have had to divert resources from non-education local public services in order to pay for the increasing costs of education because the state has not kept its funding bargain with school districts and with property taxpayers," the Stamford Advocate quotes Finley as saying.

Paul Lambert November 15, 2012 at 02:18 PM
So where's the money gonna come from now? There should be NO MANDATES. Whenever the state or federal government is going to 'provide funding', they collect the money from somewhere, waste 20 to 30% of it then give it back to you. Forgive my cynicism. I'm rapidly losing faith in our government.
H Green November 15, 2012 at 02:43 PM
No Mandates, Paul? I disagree. Without rules for school administrators, we wouldn't have girl's sports, recess, many school children would go without lunch, kids with trouble learning would be shunted off to some holding area or just sent home, there wouldn't be curricular standards, safety would be ignored, and on and on. Investing in quality public education keeps our property values high. It provides a well trained workforce to sustain our economy and inspires the next generation of leaders and care givers. Under-funding education or inequitably funding education gives some individuals some short term benefit and hurts all of us over the long haul.
Phil Dunn November 15, 2012 at 02:52 PM
Did anyone read the Hartford Courant this morning? The State is $365 million in the hole. There is no more money whatsoever coming from the State anytime soon.
Wyatt November 15, 2012 at 03:08 PM
@Paul. Completely agree. These mandates are a big reason the state is in such a fiscal mess and our taxes are so high. These people need to come back to reality.
David Moelling November 15, 2012 at 07:42 PM
Simsbury will have 40% fewer students in 10 years (http://www.simsbury.k12.ct.us/page.cfm?p=1334) so why would we worry about state funding. I bet though that the BoE will find a way to keep budgets high.
David Moelling November 15, 2012 at 07:59 PM
Oops wrong link. This consultant study shows a 25% drop (40% from peak) to the lowest number since 1962. With the town limiting housing development and encouraging over 55 housing, this is likely to be true. Add in the increasing number of kids going to private school and we should have steadily declining school budgets. The state doesn't give much to towns like Simsbury so why not push for reduced mandates and try to do something innovative in our system instead of assumming it works the same as a Pratt & Whitney Assembly line. http://www.simsbury.k12.ct.us/uploaded/District_Content/BOE/Facilities_and_Enrollment_Task_Force/Prowda_study_results.pdf
Saul Freedman November 16, 2012 at 01:30 AM
The teachers can lead the charge by demonstrating how much they care for the students they frequently use as pawns in making the public sympathize with their plight as "underpaid" slaves of the BOEs by unilaterally offering to cut their salaries 10%.

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