Sunday, October 26, 2014

Your Most Important Vote This Season

I know. People want to know how to vote for the Ann Arbor school board. People want to know how to vote for the Ypsilanti school board. People want to know how to vote on the Whitmore Lake annexation (where I already told you what I think, at least in part, here and here).

But really. The most important vote you will make for the schools this year is at the top of the ballot. The most important vote you will make will be for a governor who is devoted to schools, who doesn't want to raid the School Aid Fund, who wants to build up the School Aid Fund.

Governor Snyder has cut (business taxes), and cut (the School Aid Fund), and transferred (money from the School Aid Fund). And he doesn't show many signs of stopping.

As this Michigan Radio article notes,

In his budgets, Gov. Snyder has been shifting about $400 million per year out of the School Aid Fund – the money dedicated to K-12 – and sending it to the state’s community colleges and universities to partially make up for cuts he made there. No governor has ever done that before.
Mitch Bean, the consultant who’s kept a close eye on the budget for decades, says the line items in the School Aid Fund have been altered to the point it’s really hard to compare past School Aid Fund budgets to the Snyder budgets. But behind the shell game of shifting money from here to there, a loss is revealed. Bean says since Gov. Snyder cut taxes on businesses, less money is going into the school fund.
“If the School Aid Fund revenues hadn’t been reduced by over $600 million each year by the business tax cut, that alone would be enough to fund resources to higher education and community colleges – $400 million from the School Aid Fund, which they’re currently doing, and pensions, and there would be enough money to give $400 per pupil to the Foundation Allowance,” Bean explained.
Bean says a billion dollars in cuts or a billion dollars added during the governor’s four-year term isn’t the real story. The tax change means billions of dollars of potential resources lost to schools during that time. Fewer business tax dollars going into the School Aid Fund and then dollars being taken out for higher ed and community colleges add up.

The most important vote you will make this year for schools? 

It's the Governor's Race.

Mark Schauer

Are you voting for public schools? Vote for Mark Schauer.

Consider subscribing to Ann Arbor Schools Musings by Email!

No comments:

Post a Comment