Education funding discussions need action, says Rep. Mike Hope.
Hope, R-Lake Stevens, testified in a House public hearing yesterday in favor of an education funding proposal by Lake Stevens School Board Director David Iseminger.
“Last year we passed a comprehensive education funding reform blueprint without specifics on funding,” Hope said. “This bill recommends a specific action plan the state could take to ensure we have equal, predictable funding for our schools without raising taxes.”
House Bill 2746, which has bipartisan support, would direct the state’s local finance working group on education to analyze the options in the Iseminger plan. The plan includes five tenets:
Direct 50 percent of all future revenue growth to education reform; Fund the neediest districts and schools first; Shift local levy lid collections to the state by using existing state-collected portion of the property tax; Reserve additional bonding capacity realized from an increase in state revenues from levy collections to build additional classrooms and schools; and Reform local levy rate lids. Hope, who serves on both Education and Education Appropriations committees, was optimistic about the plan, but is also open to suggestions to make it work.
“If someone has better ideas to make this plan solid, David and I are certainly both willing to look at those,” Hope said. “This is a great road map for fully funding education in the near future without raising taxes.”
The local finance working group was created with the passage of House Bill 2261 in 2009.
House Bill 2746, heard yesterday, has been scheduled for executive session in the Education Appropriations Committee on Thursday, Jan. 28.
Contact: Sarah Lamb, public information officer, (360) 786-7720 BROADCAST TV: Testimony by Hope and Iseminger is below, courtesy of TVW: