Kansas lawmakers voted to increase education funding to the state’s poorer school districts, thus complying with a State Supreme Court ruling last month that directed the legislature to provide these districts $120 million that they were due under a statutory scheme that awards funds to supplement the amounts raised by school districts that have adopted property tax levies above the mandated state property tax requirements. In a close vote, 22 to 16 in the State Senate, and 63 to 57 in the House, the Kansas legislature agreed to fully abide by this part of the Courts’ order, well in advance of the July 1 deadline the justices had established. At the same time, the lawmakers also voted to grant tax breaks for corporations that donate to private school scholarship funds directed at low-income students and end a hearing process for teachers if they are to be fired. The Kansas Supreme Court’s ruling also remanded to a lower court the larger issue of the adequacy of state funding.
April 9, 2014