March 17, 2014

Common Core, state aid complicate budgets


School officials say state-aid cuts hamper their efforts to adequately implement performance review and blend Common Core reform, let alone coordinating pre-K programs.

Schools are looking, instead, to cut athletic and music programs next year just to make ends meet.


In his budget, Cuomo  also looks to enact a 2-year property-tax freeze, a move some say would completely hamstring school budgets.

The Alliance for Quality Education, a coalition of parents and educators, launched a protest in Albany, delivering petitions to the governor’s office.

“The tax freeze would compound the jeopardy the (2 percent) tax cap already creates for schools,” the alliance said in a statement.

“The (governor’s) new proposal would promise voter rebates, delivering the equivalent of a property-tax freeze, but only if they oppose any school budget seeking a tax increase above the cap.”


Cuomo’s executive budget is being metered now by spending plans from both the Senate and the Assembly.

The Assembly version looks to add back $402 million in state funding for schools and rejects Cuomo’s move to freeze property taxes, opting instead for “circuit breaker” property-tax relief measures based on need. 

The Senate is expected to propose an end to Gap Elimination Adjustment cuts over a two-year period.

Lawmakers have limited time to reconcile three spending plans to produce a state budget by March 31.

Email Kim Smith


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