- Assembly Bill 835/Senate Bill 690: sparsity aid, the revenue limit ceiling for school districts, and making an appropriation.
The WASB supports these identical companion bills based on WASB Resolutions 2.16, 2.425 & 2.43.
- A big thank you to Tim Stellmacher of the West Bend School Board (pictured) for taking the time to come and testify in support of the bill during the public hearing (on Feb. 7) along with administrators from Mukwonago, Oak Creek-Franklin, Oostburg and Slinger.
The Assembly Education Committee, chaired by Rep. Jeremy Thiesfeldt (R-Fond du Lac), held a public hearing on the following items on Thursday, January 25.
Assembly Bill 835
Relating to: sparsity aid, the revenue limit ceiling for school districts, and making
an appropriation. See our previous post for more information.
By Representatives Nygren, Felzkowski, Mursau, Kitchens, Ballweg, Bernier,
Born, Edming, Katsma, Kulp, Krug, Loudenbeck, Nerison, Novak, Petersen, Petryk,
Pronschinske, Quinn, Rohrkaste, Spiros, Steffen, Summerfield, Swearingen, Thiesfeldt,
Tittl, Tranel, VanderMeer, Vorpagel, Rodriguez and Steineke; cosponsored by Senators
Marklein, Olsen, Testin, LeMahieu, Moulton and Tiffany. Continue reading Public hearing held on Sparsity Aid/Low Revenue Ceiling bill
As the U.S. House and Senate work to reconcile their differing versions of a federal tax reform plan, one thing appears certain: significant changes are ahead for our nation’s schools.
If you’re curious about how provisions in the federal tax overhaul bill might affect K-12 students and schools, this brief, 4-minute audio report from National Public Radio provides a concise summary of the key changes proposed by Congress likely to impact public K-12 schools and their students.
The U.S. House of Representatives passed its version of a mammoth federal tax reform plan yesterday on what was essentially a party-line vote. The final tally on H.R. 1, the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (TCJA), was 227 to 205, with all but 13 Republicans voting in favor of the measure and all Democrats voting against it.
The massive overhaul package, which would slash taxes for businesses and corporations and makes numerous tax changes for individuals, would also increase the national debt by up to $1.5 trillion over 10 years.
The House Committee on Ways and Means convened this afternoon in a “markup” session to begin consideration of H.R. 1, the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (TCJA), a tax reform package that would slash corporate income tax rate and some individual income tax rates and raise the standard deduction, offsetting the cost by eliminating some cherished itemized deductions. The legislation is the first draft of a bill for tax reform and is expected to be under consideration by the Committee throughout this week with many possible amendments likely to be taken up. (A markup session is the name given to when a Congressional committee or subcommittee meets to debate, amend or rewrite a bill. The committee has the option of either accepting or rejecting the final version of the bill that comes out of the markup session.)
Several of bill’s provisions would likely impact school districts in a negative way. These include:
After bolstering their majorities in both houses of the state legislature, GOP legislative leaders gave some glimpses into what may be their priorities for the next legislative session which begins in January. Molly Beck of the WI State Journal writes “Wisconsin Republicans could put more money toward schools” as part of that agenda:
“It’s about reform,” said (Senate Majority Leader Scott) Fitzgerald. “I think that’s what we’ve kind of demonstrated to the citizens of Wisconsin. … This Republican Legislature continues to tackle big things.”
Fitzgerald said that means lawmakers may look at putting more money into K-12 schools and the University of Wisconsin System — after cutting funding from them in previous budgets. But he didn’t offer specifics Wednesday. He said part of that is a shift in attitude toward school funding on the part of Gov. Scott Walker.
“When we took over back in 2011, we pushed bold reforms. They worked,” Walker said in a statement. “Since then, we gained seats in the Legislature in 2012, 2014, and now in 2016. Looking ahead, we will invest more to help every child succeed.”
According to their recently released Forward Agenda, Assembly Republicans want to explore the concept of Education Savings Accounts (ESAs) under which taxpayer-funded grants would be given to parents and placed in these accounts to be used for education-related expenses, including private school tuition.
According to Molly Beck of the Wisconsin State Journal, similar savings accounts are used in five states — Arizona, Florida, Mississippi, Nevada and Tennessee. Most of these programs are a new phenomenon. Only the Arizona & Florida ESAs existed in the 2014-15 school year. Typically these programs have income and other eligibility restrictions for participation. Nevada is the only state that has implemented a program that allows any parent — regardless of income or a child’s disability — to use the accounts provided their child has attended a public school for at least 100 days.