Texas House, Senate pass school finance bill mandating teacher raises and cutting taxes

first_img Twitter Local NewsState Pinterest Facebook WhatsApp Pinterest Previous article051619_Reagan_recycling_JF_08Next articleMATTER OF RECORD: May 10 through May 17 Digital AIM Web Support Days after top Republican leaders announced they had a deal on a school finance bill long in the making, the Texas House and Senate on Saturday approved the final legislation, bringing mandated teacher pay raises and property tax cuts one step closer to becoming law. The Texas House voted 139-0 and the Senate voted 30-0 to approve the final negotiated version of House Bill 3, which includes $6.5 billion to improve public education and pay teachers, plus $5.1 billion to lower school district taxes. Authored by state Rep. Dan Huberty, R-Houston, and sponsored by state Sen. Larry Taylor, R-Friendswood, the bill is now poised to head to Gov. Greg Abbott for a signature. “In my inaugural address I said that this will be the session we enact historical school finance reform by putting more money into the classroom, paying our teachers more, reducing recapture and cutting property taxes,” Abbott said in a statement after the bill passed both chambers. “Tonight, without a court order, the legislature did just that by passing one of the most transformative educational bills in recent Texas history.” HB 3 passed the House first. “We are truly transforming public school finance in Texas and all of you have been a large part of that,” Huberty said, before calling for a vote. Afterward, he and House Speaker Dennis Bonnen, along with a few other lawmakers, walked across the hall to watch the upper chamber do the same. But a few lawmakers from both parties in both chambers raised concerns that the state would not be able to afford the cost of the changes long term. Before voting for the bill, state Rep. Trey Martinez Fischer, D-San Antonio, called for a “sustainable path that will support increasing the cost of this bill for schools,” especially as more students continue to enroll in public schools. “I think we’re spending far more on it than what we should,” said state Sen. Bob Hall, R-Edgewood. Despite facing repeated lawsuits alleging the state hasn’t adequately funded public schools, lawmakers, including Huberty and Taylor, failed to make changes during the last legislative session in 2017 — a reform bill became mired in political controversy between the Senate and the House. Instead, they created a school finance panel of lawmakers, educators, and businesspeople that ultimately developed dozens of recommendations to overhaul the system. Many of those recommendations appear in the version of HB 3 that lawmakers voted out Saturday, including funding full-day pre-K for eligible 4-year-olds, increasing the money used to educate low-income students, incentivizing school districts to offer dual language programs and improve dyslexia programs, and providing money for school districts that want to develop their own merit pay programs for teachers. The panel did not recommend giving classroom teachers across-the-board raises. But after Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick began the session announcing a plan to give $5,000 permanent raises to all full-time teachers, the proposal became one of the most talked-about in the Capitol and across the state. With the state’s average teacher salary below the national average, many teachers desperately wanted the $5,000 to deal with soaring health insurance premiums and other costs — though they asked for other school employees to receive more money as well. School administrators, on the other hand, asked for flexibility on how to use additional funding in their schools so they could address local priorities. Bonnen said he preferred to allow them that discretion. The final proposal would require school districts to use a portion of their increase in per-student funding on salary increases and benefits for teachers, librarians, nurses, and counselors, with a smaller amount designated for raises for all employees, as administrators see fit. They are expected to prioritize raises and benefits for teachers with more than five years of experience, but otherwise would have flexibility on how to offer salary increases. HB 3 also includes several Senate proposals to help lower school district tax rates over the next two years and beyond. It would limit the growth in tax revenue: school districts with property values growing 2.5% or more would see tax rates automatically lowered to keep revenue growth in line. The bill also mandates a study on potential sources of money for future school district tax cuts and their anticipated impacts on taxpayers, schools and the state. Lawmakers estimate the bill would lower tax rates by an average of 8 cents per $100 valuation in 2020 and 13 cents in 2021. That would mean a tax cut of $200 for the owner of a $250,000 home in 2020 and $325 in 2021. The cost of the reforms is anticipated to jump in future years. The official cost analysis shows the changes will cost the state $13.5 billion in 2022 and 2023, a $2 billion increase from the upcoming biennium. “Many of you have asked how we’re going to pay for it as we go forward with tax compression,” Huberty said. He referenced a new fund the bill creates to pay for those tax cuts. The state comptroller is required to deposit some money from the Available School Fund — which provides money for schools derived from state-owned land and fuel taxes — and some money from an online sales tax into the new fund. But it is not clear whether the state’s plan to lower tax rates further in future years is sustainable, a point of concern for some lawmakers. Because the state is required to help school districts pay to educate students, limiting local tax revenue could force the state to reimburse them billions of dollars going forward. “It does not provide the reliable state revenue source that will be necessary to realize a truly transformational, long term school finance solution,” the Democrat-run Texas Legislative Study Group Caucus wrote in a recent analysis of HB 3. “For that reason, future legislatures may still have to address challenges if state revenue is not readily available.” Read related Tribune coverageTeacher raises and all-day pre-K: Here’s what’s in the Texas Legislature’s landmark school finance billTexas’ legislative leaders say they have a deal on school finance and property tax reformCan pay raises help rural Texas districts like Buffalo retain teachers? 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Donegal Councillors are being asked to sign a “Charter of Conduct”

first_img 70% of Cllrs nationwide threatened, harassed and intimidated over past 3 years – Report LUH system challenged by however, work to reduce risk to patients ongoing – Dr Hamilton Google+ Almost 10,000 appointments cancelled in Saolta Hospital Group this week By News Highland – January 20, 2014 Need for issues with Mica redress scheme to be addressed raised in Seanad also Previous articleEmergency services attend three car smash close to Murlog junctionNext articleÚdarás created 64 Donegal jobs in 2013 – optimistic for 2014 News Highland All members of Donegal County Council are being asked to sign a Charter of Conduct after there were further disputes and rowdy exchanges during the 2014 Budget process.A letter has been circulated by Councillor Marie Therese Gallagher, who hopes that if a charter were established, it would allow the Council business be conducted in an efficient and orderly way.Councillor Gallagher says the hostility which exists in the Council chamber is doing a disservice to the people of Donegal, it is time to leave the baggage outside the door of the Chamber……………[podcast]http://www.highlandradio.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/01/mtgcharter.mp3[/podcast] Twitter RELATED ARTICLESMORE FROM AUTHOR Facebook WhatsAppcenter_img Twitter Pinterest Donegal Councillors are being asked to sign a “Charter of Conduct” News Google+ Facebook Minister McConalogue says he is working to improve fishing quota Pinterest WhatsApp Dail hears questions over design, funding and operation of Mica redress schemelast_img read more

Rafael: Players to blame for slump

first_img Press Association “But David Moyes has a strong mentality. He is doing his own job. We have to use that in a positive way.” With the club’s board giving no sign of their belief being shaken in a man they handed a six-year contract to last summer, if the players do not shape up, it seems likely they will be the ones being ushered through the exit door. For some – Rafael’s fellow countryman Anderson and maybe even twin brother Fabio – it already appears too late. Others have work ahead of them. “We have spoken about it a lot,” said Rafael. “We have to show our quality. People are saying United don’t have a good squad. We have to prove it is not true.” United finally got their first victory of 2014 at Old Trafford on Saturday as second-half goals from Antonio Valencia and Danny Welbeck proved enough to overcome Swansea. Yet the three successive defeats that preceded that success condemned the Red Devils to an early exit from the FA Cup, gave them a first-leg deficit to overcome in a Capital One Cup semi-final tussle with Sunderland and left them with ground to make up just to claim a place in next season’s Champions League. Manchester United full-back Rafael has claimed it is time for the players to start taking responsibility for the club’s poor form. Manager David Moyes has taken most of the flak for United’s stunning fall from grace, the depth of which even the Scot has admitted caught him by surprise. Rafael thinks it is time the players took their fair share too. “I agree with that sentiment 100 per cent,” said the Brazilian. “We are the ones who have to take the responsibility. “I don’t know why everyone is looking at the manager. It is the players who have to do the job on the pitch.” Rafael makes no excuses in the massive upheaval created by Sir Alex Ferguson’s exit last summer, insisting there is enough quality at Old Trafford to smooth out any teething problems. “We knew there would be a change,” he said. “The manager had just left after 27 years and it was always going to be hard. last_img read more

Mandzukic winner sends Juve through

first_imgMario Mandzukic’s 59th-minute winner earned Juventus a 1-0 victory over Valencia that ensured they booked their place in the knockout rounds.The Bianconeri were stunned by Manchester United in Turin during their last group game but sealed their place in the last 16 with one game to spare on Tuesday, with Group H top spot now up for grabs on matchday six.In a game of few chances, Mandzukic scored a tap-in in the second half after Cristiano Ronaldo had worked space to steer a cross to the Croatian striker. Article continues below Editors’ Picks Man Utd ready to spend big on Sancho and Haaland in January Who is Marcus Thuram? Lilian’s son who is top of the Bundesliga with Borussia Monchengladbach Brazil, beware! Messi and Argentina out for revenge after Copa controversy Best player in MLS? Zlatan wasn’t even the best player in LA! United’s last-gasp win over Young Boys means Valencia are out, with no way of reaching the last 16 even if they beat Mourinho’s side at home in their final group [email protected] has now scored in all out of seasons played in the @ChampionsLeague #JuveVCF #FinoAllaFine #ForzaJuve pic.twitter.com/O8pKwA1QSZ— JuventusFC (@juventusfcen) November 27, 2018Juventus had been awarded two penalties in the reverse fixture with Valencia but Miralem Pjanic, the scorer of both of those spot-kicks, was denied another in the first half when he claimed he was pulled back by Geoffrey Kondogbia.The Bianconeri dominated possession but struggled to conjure up chances and Joao Cancelo’s outside-of-the-foot effort that went wide was as close as they came to a first-half goal.It was Valencia who almost took the lead on the stroke of half-time, but Wojciech Sczcesny’s brilliant one-hand save repelled Mouctar Diakhaby’s header from a corner.Juventus continued to look short of ideas until Ronaldo’s moment of magic just before the hour mark.The Portugal forward’s stepover fooled Gabriel and gave him enough space to steer across a ball that Mandzukic turned home from close range.Valencia thought they had hit straight back when Diakhaby got a touch to Dani Parejo’s near-post free-kick.However, the ball had clearly struck the defender’s outstretched arm and rather than being credited with an equaliser, Diakhaby was punished with a yellow card from referee Willie Collum.Neto denied Paulo Dybala, Ronaldo and Mandzukic a second Juve goal, but Valencia never looked like getting an equaliser at the other end as they exited the competition.FT: INTO THE #UCL LAST 16!!! #JuveVCF #FinoAllaFine #ForzaJuve pic.twitter.com/NVP2VGS6s6— JuventusFC (@juventusfcen) November 27, 2018 What does it mean? Juve through, but top spot not guaranteedWith Ronaldo now in their ranks, Juventus are considered one of the favourites for this competition and can now look forward to being in the last 16. However, United’s late winner means they are not yet through as group winners, with Juve holding a two-point advantage with one game to go. The Italians must win their last game to be certain of sealing top spot.Ronaldo exacts a measure of revengeRonaldo was controversially sent off against Valencia in the first meeting between the two, but he made a more positive contribution here with some fine skill to tee up Mandzukic for the winner. He also had eight shots on goal in a lively performance.Valencia’s tactics come back to haunt themValencia lacked attacking intent even after falling behind, registering only one attempt on target in the whole match. That may not have looked as costly when it was 0-0 at Old Trafford, but Marcelino’s side went out with a whimper as soon as Marouane Fellaini struck in Manchester.Key Opta Facts:- Juventus have made it past the first group stage in 12 of their last 14 Champions League campaigns.- They have kept a clean sheet in six of their last seven Champions League group games.- Valencia have now failed to get past the group stages in three of their last four Champions League appearances.- Ronaldo was on the winning side for the 100th time in the Champions League (157th game) – the first player to reach this milestone in the competition.- Mandzukic has scored at least once in all seven of his previous Champions League campaigns, netting 21 times in total.What’s next?Valencia, who host United next month, do at least have the consolation prize of Europa League football in the new year, and Juventus round off their campaign at Young Boys eyeing first place. Domestically, Juve have a trip to Fiorentina on Saturday, while Valencia will hope to move into LaLiga’s top half when they visit Real Madrid. read morelast_img read more