Credit Where Credit is Due
After just the first day of Colorado’s legislative season, there’s no point in trying to predict if this will be a good year for Colorado’s students. There’s no way to know right now if the legislature will make investment in teaching and in our classrooms a high priority.
But we can give credit where credit is due to a number of policymakers who took the opportunity of “Opening Day” to make a strong statement about reversing the cuts that our students have endured over the past several years. Here’s the honor roll. We hope you’ll choose one (or more) to send a quick thank you email.
Senator Andy Kerr introduced Senate Bill 15-033 to ask the voters to allow the state to retain revenues in excess of the TABOR limit to spend on preschool and K-12 education. Unfortunately, the bill has been assigned to a committee that is expected to kill it immediately. Senator Kerr deserves praise and thanks for trying to give voters the chance to do right by kids.Thank him at SenatorAndyKerr@gmail.com or on Twitter at @SenAndyKerr
Senator Jon Becker introduced House Bill 15-058 to require excess revenue that comes in beyond what the legislature budgets to be deposited into the State Education Fund (70%) and a new Higher Education Fund (30%). This policy is similar to the “Surplus for Kids” amendment that Great Ed promoted last year. “Schools saw their funding reduced year after year during the recession and the burden was placed on them to provide a quality education with fewer resources. Now that the economy is beginning to improve we can begin to restore Colorado schools’ budgets and ensure they receive the resources that they sacrificed during economic hardship.” Thank him at firstname.lastname@example.org
In his opening day speech, House Minority Leader Brian DelGrosso acknowledged that “the recession forced our education system to endure significant budget cuts” and “call[ed] for more on-going funding to reduce the negative factor instead of one-time dollars.” Thank him at email@example.com or on Twitter at @RepDelGrosso
Likewise, Speaker of the House Dickey Lee Hullinghorst called on her fellow legislators “to increase our investment in the most indispensable ingredient of our state’s future — the next generation of Coloradans.” Thank her at firstname.lastname@example.org
Finally, Senate President Bill Cadman made a commitment to “reasonable, sustainable [K-12] funding increases.” Thank him at email@example.com
119 more days to go in the session. Stay tuned for easy and quick ways to let your legislators know you expect them to make education a priority.
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