Batinick bill would give schools funding at last year's levels immediately
The ongoing impasse over the state's school funding bill has prompted Rep. Mark Batinick (R-Plainfield) to file legislation to fund schools at the same levels as last year and temporarily remove the legislative road block to get money to schools, according to a press release.
“Time is of the essence,” Batinick said in the release. “Schoolchildren and teachers should not be used as pawns in a manufactured crisis over school funding. My bill, if allowed to be debated and voted on, would pass quickly with broad bipartisan support. No school district would lose funding.
Senate Bill 1, the state's funding measure, includes an additional $571 million, but its distribution has triggered a legislative tug-of-war. Gov. Bruce Rauner issued an amendatory veto to redistribute those funds differently from what the original measure would do, and the Senate countered by overriding the veto. The House has not yet acted on the bill.
Batinick’s House Bill 4085 would allow schools to receive funding as the new school year begins, rather than wait upon the resolution of the impasse.
“All sides in the school funding reform debate have agreed to a hold harmless that protects every school district by maintaining last year’s level of state aid,” Batinick said in he release. “We should pass this bill now to ensure schools open on time and continue to work on addressing the inequities in our school funding system moving forward.”