Yesterday, I testified before the House Appropriations committee and proposed an amendment to move $5 million to education from economic development. This is such an important issue, I wanted to share excerpts from my remarks with you.
“I have an amendment to remove $5 million dollars from your bill and move it from the Future Fund allocation and move it to education. The fact is that the Future Fund ended the year with a balance of over $21 million dollars. The projection we were given in Appropriations, it would still have $10 million dollars next year and then it would have in $9 million dollars in the following year. The Future Fund is a discretionary fund for the governor, and while we support economic development I think the specifics of the economic development should be in the legislative actions and not in other actions.”
“…$5 million dollars was committed based on an expected revenue source that didn’t materialize because the people voted against that bill….the source for that $5 million dollars was a ten-percent cut in education.”
“…now I’m saying this increase in revenue from the citizens should go to where the citizens need it. That is in education and not where the citizens have rejected a proposal. As a consequence, this amendment would move $5 million dollars from this bill and put it to a per-pupil allocation in education.”
“This doesn’t mean that we have completely denuded the Future Fund. Indeed not, from the numbers given to us in this legislature there would be very adequate money for discretionary economic development from the Governor’s Office in the Future Fund…”
“…I would hope that someone would move, or that you go through 1060, that you take this $5 million dollars that was borrowed or otherwise moved from education and put it back where it belongs.”