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Analysis released Saturday evening confirms Rauner plan will perpetuate system of winners and losers

SPRINGFIELD – Senator Andy Manar (D-Bunker Hill) issued the following statement regarding the release of the state’s analysis of Gov. Bruce Rauner’s suggested changes to Senate Bill 1:

“Gov. Rauner's numbers clearly show that his plan to fund schools is a failure. Everything you need to know about it can be found in the headline of his press release: that it would send money to almost every school district in Illinois. In fact, 406,000 Illinois children statewide would receive less money under the Rauner plan.

“Senate Bill 1 was carefully crafted to ensure no school districts lose funding and that all schools are lifted into adequacy over time so that all students, regardless of where they live or their personal learning needs, have a fair shot at receiving the best education Illinois can offer. Gov. Rauner can't say the same about his plan.

“Underfunded schools in Illinois don't need a Red Bull. They need sustainable nourishment. A temporary boost in funding won't solve this problem. Senate Bill 1 provides long-term stability and certainty in our pursuit of adequacy and equity in public education.

“The most glaring omission from Gov. Rauner's spreadsheets is what happens to these school districts in the out years once his provisions kick in that pit schools against economic development. Hundreds of districts would see a significant loss of state funding, and property owners would shoulder tax hikes as a result of the state shifting costs onto school districts under the Rauner plan.

“I expect these late-breaking numbers from the administration will change few hearts and minds. In my view, there is no question that Senate Bill 1 is the path forward for Illinois. I look forward to the Senate proceeding with its vote to override Gov. Rauner.”

Category: School Funding Reform

Manar08032017 350BELLEVILLE – State Sen. Andy Manar, D-Bunker Hill, and state Reps. Jay Hoffman, D-Belleville and LaToya Greenwood, D-East St. Louis, joined local school superintendents and community leaders to discuss the devastating consequences that the governor’s veto of education funding reform would have on schools in the Metro East.

“The governor’s amendatory veto doubles-down on the inequitable, unfair funding formula that has shortchanged downstate schools for years,” Hoffman said. “Under the governor’s proposal the wealthiest communities in the state continue to game the system while districts downstate lose even more resources. Senate Bill 1 fixes our broken system and provides $18 million in additional funds to Metro-East schools.”

“It is critically important that the funding formula we adopt will bring needed resources to our community now and moving forward,” Greenwood said. “This is a choice between a thoughtful, bipartisan plan backed by school leaders across the state, and a rushed together, irresponsible proposal from the governor that would massively hurt downstate districts and increase the burden on local taxpayers. We simply cannot allow personal politics to dictate the choices we make for the future of our children.”

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.

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 this region.

“We’re going to get this done one way or another for the students and educators of Illinois. They’re counting on us to get it right after 20 years of trying to work with a broken school funding formula,” Manar said. “The first step toward the end of this conversation begins Sunday in the state Senate.”

Category: School Funding Reform

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

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