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Education news and notes from Tampa Bay and Florida

Better funding for schools, please



There's another proposal out to increase the funding for Florida schools.

Sandydalemberte Former FSU president Sandy D'Alemberte is proposing a constitutional amendment that would require the state to fund students in prekindergarten through college at a level "at least equal to that of the national average for such education levels."

All revenue coming into the state from the lottery, slot machines and other authorized gambling (less operating and regulatory costs) "shall be in addition to the general revenue funding" needed to reach the national average. That's as opposed to replacing general revenue, a common complaint about what lawmakers have done to this point with lottery revenue.

D'Alemberte has proposed the idea to the Florida Taxation and Budget Reform Commission, on which he sits. If the commission approves, the amendment would go to voters in November and, if approved, would first apply in fiscal 2012-13.

Another concept already before the commission, proposed by former Senate president John McKay, would eliminate sales tax exemptions and funnel the revenue into education, replacing property taxes. A third would require school districts to spend no less than 65 percent of their funding on classroom instruction.

[Last modified: Tuesday, May 25, 2010 9:31am]


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