ManarUrbanaThose opposed to governor's veto include local superintendents, elected officials and the League fo Women Voters.

URBANA – State Sen. Scott Bennett, D-Champaign, State Sen. Andy Manar, D-Bunker Hill, and state Rep. Carol Ammons, D-Urbana, joined local school superintendents and community leaders to discuss the devastating consequences that the governor’s veto of education funding reform would have on central Illinois schools.

“Under the amendatory veto, it’s very clear that our schools lose in central Illinois,” Ammons said. “Senate Bill 1 would have ensured that our schools would receive the amount of money they need and deserve to serve our children. Gov. Rauner’s shameful veto would cut funding to over 550 school districts, including those here in Champaign-Urbana. We should be finding ways to invest more in schools, not cutting their already limited funding.”

Senate Bill 1, which creates an equitable school funding plan, would have fixed the state’s broken education funding system, and ensured that every school in Illinois saw increased funding. Despite his agreement with 90 percent of the legislation, Gov. Rauner issued an amendatory veto of the legislation.

“The governor’s veto was clearly intended to hurt Chicago but caused a great deal of collateral damage to the schools of downstate Illinois,” said Bennett. “We must ensure that the formula that becomes law guarantees fair funding for schools all over Illinois.”

Manar noted that Rauner’s introduced changes to Senate Bill 1 would punish schools for enrollment declines, thwart local economic development efforts and bar school districts from claiming voter-approved tax cap adjustments. These provisions unfairly harm downstate Illinois’ least-funded schools the most, including many here in central Illinois.

“Rather than roll up his sleeves and work with lawmakers to solve Illinois’ school funding crisis, Gov. Rauner is pitting region against region, children against children, and education against economic development. That’s not leadership,” Manar said.

“The governor hasn’t put forth a roadmap for success. He needs to tell us how he wants to solve this problem. He vetoed the entire state budget, and he vetoed Senate Bill 1, inserting provisions that would result in higher property taxes in the most underfunded areas of the state. He needs to get serious. We have to solve this problem, and we have a limited amount of time to do it.”

Category: School Funding Reform

Numerous area communities potentially hurt by governor’s changes

Manar08032017SPRINGFIELD — Schools in Bloomington, Normal, Pontiac and Clinton and elsewhere could lose out on increased state funding because of the communities’ efforts to spur economic development, under provisions Gov. Bruce Rauner is trying to force into a school funding law.

“What Gov. Rauner has proposed without any negotiation is outrageous and yet another disservice to rural Illinois children who already attend schools that lack resources because of underfunding,” said State Senator Andy Manar, a downstate Bunker Hill Democrat and the lead sponsor of the school funding reform legislation found in Senate Bill 1.

The potential problem in McLean, Dewitt, Woodford and Livingston counties is the use of tax increment financing to try to encourage business investment.

Read more: Why Rauner’s veto is bad for Bloomington, Pontiac and Clinton area schools, economic development

Category: School Funding Reform

AWMJGBPEORIA – State Sen. Andy Manar, D-Bunker Bill, and state Rep. Jehan Gordon-Booth, D-Peoria, joined local school superintendents and community leaders on Wednesday, Aug. 9, to discuss the devastating consequences that the governor’s veto of education funding reform would have on Peoria schools.

“Without Senate Bill 1, poor and middle-income schools will continue to suffer,” said Gordon-Booth. “Because of this hurtful amendatory veto, rural schools will be expected to keep functioning without sufficient resources. Downstate districts, like mine, will continue to lose money. Peoria Public Schools loses $1 million under the amendatory veto, even when more money is invested in education, because the formula is broken.”

Senate Bill 1, which creates an equitable school funding plan, would have fixed the state’s broken education funding system, and ensured that every school in Illinois saw increased funding. Despite his agreement with 90 percent of the legislation, Gov. Rauner issued an amendatory veto of the legislation, and cut funding to over 550 school districts, including Peoria School District 150.

Manar noted that Rauner’s introduced changes to Senate Bill 1 would punish schools for enrollment declines, thwart local economic development efforts and bar school districts from claiming voter-approved tax cap adjustments. These provisions unfairly harm downstate Illinois’ least-funded schools the most, including many here in central Illinois.

“I remain hopeful that we can find a path to a reasonable compromise to reforming Illinois’ worst-in-the-nation system for funding public schools,” said Manar, the sponsor of Senate Bill 1 and a longtime advocate for fixing the state’s more than 20-year-old school funding formula.

“One way or another we’re going to get this done. But fair school funding cannot include the economy-killing provisions that target central and southern Illinois communities that Gov. Rauner attached in his veto of Senate Bill 1.”

Category: School Funding Reform

ManarVand08092017VANDALIA – Schools in Vandalia, Ramsey, St. Elmo, Shelbyville, Effingham and Teutopolis are among those that would receive less state funding than they do now under Gov. Bruce Rauner’s changes to a landmark school funding reform measure that he vetoed last week.

Rauner’s veto would punish schools for enrollment declines, thwart local economic development efforts and bar school districts from claiming voter-approved tax cap adjustments.

Schools in Fayette, Shelby and Effingham counties would be most affected by the provision Rauner inserted into Senate Bill 1 affecting tax increment financing, or TIF, districts.

Fayette County has seven TIF districts, Shelby County has three and Effingham County has eight – all designed to turn around blighted properties and spur business development that might not otherwise occur.

The governor, however, has accused communities of using this long-standing economic development tool to hide local property tax wealth to get more state funding for schools. His veto of Senate Bill 1, school funding reform legislation, calls for having the state pretend TIF districts don’t exist so that local schools will qualify for less state aid.

Read more: Fayette, Shelby, Effingham County schools lose under Rauner’s veto

Category: School Funding Reform

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