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The Majority Report 08/13/17 - Governor's education plan creates uncertainty for school districts


Manar: Rauner ‘education plan' fails 406K Illinois children, perpetuates winners and losers

Sen. Andy ManarSenator Andy Manar, a Bunker Hill Democrat, said Sunday that an Illinois State Board of Education analysis released Saturday evening proves that Gov. Bruce Rauner's suggested changes to Senate Bill 1 perpetuate a system of winners and losers.

"Gov. Rauner's numbers clearly show that his plan to fund schools is a failure. Everything you need to know about it can be found in the headline of his press release: that it would send money to almost every school district in Illinois. In fact, 406,000 Illinois children statewide would receive less money under the Rauner plan," Manar said.

"The most glaring omission from Gov. Rauner's spreadsheets is what happens to these school districts in the upcoming years once his provisions kick in that pit schools against economic development. Hundreds of districts would see a significant loss of state funding, and property owners would shoulder tax hikes as a result of the state shifting costs onto school districts under the Rauner plan."

Manar said that Senate Bill 1, legislation creating an evidence-based school funding formula, was carefully crafted so that no school district would lose funding.

Read Manar's full statement here.

Also voicing support for Senate Bill 1 over the past week were the editorial board of the Peoria Journal Star and Chicago Tribune columnist Kristen McQueary. Read their columns below.

In the news
Chicago Tribune: Lawmakers, reject Gov. Rauner's changes on school funding
Peoria Journal-Star: Governor's amendatory veto of SB 1 looking like a dud for Peoria
Chicago Sun-Times: CPS would lose nearly $500 million under gov's school funding plan


Expanding the Organ Donor Registry becomes law

Sen. Mattie HunterFamilies may soon see a second chance at life for their loved ones thanks to legislation passed by State Senator Mattie Hunter (D-Chicago) that allows 16- and 17-year-olds to register for the state's First Person Consent Organ/Tissue Donor Registry when they receive their driver's license or identification card. Currently, there are nearly 5,000 people on the organ donor waiting list.

"Choosing to give life to another is a wonderful gift," Hunter said. "Opening the donor registry will broaden the number of overall donations and save countless lives. For donors, their decision to register can turn a troubling time into a source of comfort for families and individuals in need. The campaign has not only been designed to increase the donor registry list, but to also celebrate those that have helped save lives through the gift of donation."

The legislation was signed into law last week and becomes effective immediately.

Read more here.



Trotter urges Rauner to release state money for Olive-Harvey Transportation, Distribution and Logistics Center

trotter olive harveySenator Donne Trotter, a Chicago Democrat, is demanding the governor release state money for completion of a college training center that is expected to prepare students for thousands of transportation-related jobs in the Chicago region.

Construction on the $45 million Olive-Harvey Transportation Distribution and Logistics Center was halted in 2015 because of the state budget stalemate. Lawmakers included $15 million for the center in the state budget they approved in July. Weeks later, Gov. Bruce Rauner has still not released that money.

"This hold on the TDL Center is hurting the prospect of job growth in an area that desperately needs it," said Sen. Trotter, a Chicago Democrat and vice chairman of a key Senate budget committee. "It's time for Gov. Rauner to do what's right to help train the people of Chicago."

Officials say the facility will help to prepare students for more than 110,000 transportation-related jobs in the next 10 years in an area of Chicago where people are in need of job stimulation.

Read more here.


In case you missed it

Senator Scott Bennett, Champaign: Illinois Senate meets Sunday to address school funding plan (Bloomington Pantagraph)

Senator Cristina Castro, Elgin: Senator Cristina Castro: Governor Rauner's plan pits businesses against schools (Chicago Tribune)

Senator Tom Cullerton, Villa Park: Tom Cullerton works to eliminate red tape for Illinois' businesses (Chicago Daily Herald)

Senator Bill Haine, Alton: Local senator hopes to override Senate Bill 1 veto (CBS St. Louis)

Senator Michael Hastings, Tinley Park: Sen. Michael E. Hastings' measure to streamline state purchasing process signed into law (Chicago Tribune)

Senator Steven Landek, Bridgeview: Governor misleads voters over education funding veto (Suburban Chicagoland)

Senator Steve Stadelman, Rockford: Rockford area superintendents: Lawmakers should override Rauner's veto on school funding reform (Rockford Register Star)

Senator Heather Steans, Chicago: Senate back in Springfield Sunday, gearing up for veto override (Chicago Sun-Times)


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