Illinois Senate Overrides Governor's Veto of Chicago School Aid

Illinois Senate Overrides Governor's Veto of Chicago School Aid

Illinois Senate Overrides Governor's Veto of Chicago School Aid

The Illinois Senate has voted to override Gov. Bruce Rauner's veto of a public-school funding plan.

On Aug. 12, the Illinois State Board of Education released an analysis of Rauner's amendatory veto showing more than 97 percent of Illinois school districts would receive more money compared with the version of SB 1 lawmakers sent to his desk.

The motion to override moves to the House.

The House is scheduled to be in session on Wednesday, and must act on the veto within 15 days.

Members of the Senate rejected those changes and successfully overrode the governor on a 38-19 vote. Override prospects are less certain there.

Rather than embracing changes that would have brought greater fairness and equity to the school's funding formula, senators voting to override the governor's amendatory veto chose to continue a long history of state bailouts for CPS.

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Democrats in the Legislature, which ended a two-year stalemate by approving a budget over Rauner's objections in July, included a provision in the budget about school funding. Sam McCann of Jacksonville, also voted "yes" on the override. It redistributed funds and Rauner is promoting that almost every district would get more money under his plan.

A fiscal 2018 budget unveiled on Friday by the Chicago Public Schools (CPS) counts on almost $570 million in new money from the state and city that may not materialize or has not been identified. They say the Rauner plan simply takes district from one needy district to fund another.

The Senate convened Sunday. As was stated earlier, the governor's amendatory veto makes the symptoms, the sickness that we have even worse. "It shows that for years the state has been sending money to Chicago at the expense of the rest of the state", Rauner said. Chicago's district would receive another $221 million in aid for pension costs under a measure that hasn't been approved, according to the document from the governor's office.

The governor told reporters at the Capitol Sunday that his plan means "the vast majority of our neediest districts get millions (of dollars) more".

The "evidence-based" funding model funnels money to those districts with the highest levels poverty, non-English speakers and more. "If state lawmakers can't agree on a solution immediately, they should enact the existing funding formula - as flawed as it may be - to ensure all schools can open on time, and resume negotiations on education funding reform separately".

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