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Senate passes changes to school funding

April 14, 2005
By: Victor Roberto
State Capital Bureau
Links: SB 287

The Missouri Senate has passed a bill changing how the state funds public schools.

Victor Roberto has more from the state Capitol.

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OutCue: SOC

The Missouri Senate has rewritten the formula that determines how much money the states gives each public school district.

If fully funded, public schools would get nearly 700 million dollars over the next five years.

22 senators voted to pass the bill, while 8 voted against it.

Columbia Democratic Senator Chuck Graham says the plan is flawed because Republicans haven't found the money to pay for the new formula.

Actuality:
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Contents: You can't fund your schools based on a hope and a prayer.

The new formula is an attempt by lawmakers to stop a lawsuit filed by hundreds of Missouri school districts.

Early last year, several districts sued the state, claiming the existing formula doesn't treat all students fairly.

Now more than 250 districts are involved.

Graham says simply changing the formula does not avoid the lawsuit.

The new formula will go to the Missouri House for debate.

From the state Capitol, I'm Victor Roberto.

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The Missouri Senate passed a bill that changes the way public schools are funded.

Victor Roberto has more from the state Capitol.

Story:
RunTime:
OutCue: SOC

Since last year, Missouri school districts have been in a battle with the state...over how they get money.

Now more than 250 districts are suing Missouri, saying the way the state gives money to their schools is unfair.

So the Missouri Senate changed the formula...hoping to end the lawsuit.

The new formula doesn't say where the nearly 700 million dollars is coming from, only how it should be distributed.

Sen. Charlie Shields, the Republican Floor Leader, says he is optimistic about being able to find the money needed for the new formula..

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Contents: I think this is a formula that we can afford and that we can fund...and that I am committed to funding.

Democrats say the Republicans should have found a funding source before passing the formula.

From the state Capitol, I'm Victor Roberto.

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Two days after preliminary approval to changes in school funding, the Missouri Senate took its final vote...and sent the bill to the House.

Victor Roberto has more from the state Capitol.

Story:
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OutCue: SOC

The Missouri Senate has come up with a new way to fund public schools.

The mathematical formula doesn't say where the nearly 700 million dollars will come from, just how it should be allocated.

Last year, school districts sued Missouri, saying the current formula is unfair to students.

Some senators argued the formula is still unfair...now to taxpayers.

St. Louis County Senator Tim Green was among the Democrats who argued against the bill.

Green says taxpayers in his district are paying an unfair share of the financial burden.

Actuality:
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Contents: My constituents are going to have to bear a higher burden, I feel, with their tax money.

The Missouri House will now have a chance to debate the new formula.

From the state Capitol, I'm Victor Roberto.