State Representative Janel Brandtjen
Joint Finance Committee (JFC) provides
$200 million to schools;
Administrators and school boards say
itís not enough.
Once again our school
administrators along the with rest of the public education
establishment have exposed their limitless craving for
more money. Regardless of whether they have more
students this year than last or if they are experiencing
declining enrollment, it makes no difference. They need
more money, period.
Unfortunately money is tight.
Incomes are stagnate and revenues are flat. Blame it on
Obama, blame it on Scott Walker or blame it on the
little boy who lives down the lane. Simply put, money
is hard to come by again this year, surprise surprise.
I have been contacted by many parents worried about
funding cuts to the IRIS program that assists families
with disabled children. We are doing our best to
sustain programs that help low income seniors get the
medicines they need and our roads are in disrepair (we
are still feeling the effects of
Governor Doyleís raid on the transportation fund).
Governor Walker put forth a budget that reflected the
financial condition of Wisconsin. It basically said: if
there is money we can save by consolidating, eliminating
or restructuring then we best start saving it now. I
Walkerís original budget called for a reduction of
$150 per student in year one of the budget but restored
the $150 in year two. Administrators and other school
officials asked their legislators to restore the $150
per student in year one. I and other legislators that I
spoke with agreed that restoring the money would be a
priority given that we had expected the
Legislative Fiscal Bureau (LFB) to upgrade their
economic forecast and several hundred million dollars
would be available. I regretfully report that the
forecast was not changed and the new money was not
realized. I would further note that the $880 million in
new revenue (thank you Governor Walker) that was
originally projected was used to offset increasing
costs (thank you President Obama).
However the Joint Finance Committee (JFC) in their
ultimate wisdom voted not only to restore the $150 per
student in year one ($127 million), they also ADDED $100
to the existing $150 in the second year ($73 million) for
total of $200 million!
Much to the surprise of the JFC
(their surprise not mine) there was no tickertape
parade, no spontaneous joyful celebrations and certainly
no ride in the chair of cheers. Instead of a thank
you the reaction was, although
disheartening, predictable. Republicans are evil.
A quick review of the history
surrounding public education will reveal the reason for
such a cold reception to $200 million for education.
Itís called 50 years of the entitlement mentality. The
education establishment is entitled. They are entitled
to having a monopoly on all things school related such
as funding, zero accountability, hiring, and of course
students. Educators are entitled to year round pay,
Cadillac benefits, and a 188 day contract.
Administrators are entitled to six figure salaries,
lucrative retirement plans, and it seems they can lobby
elected officials without school board approval. A
quick note to school boards: Time to awaken from your
slumber, in this post- Act 10 environment we will need
you to pay attention.
God Bless Wisconsin!
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Please Remember Father's Day!
Sunday June 21, 2015