School-funding sponsor calls for House override

Illinois governor's veto could jeopardize school funding

The school funding is in limbo in IL after Governor Bruce Rauner used his veto powers on the school funding plan.

Ahead of the Senate vote, the Republican governor reiterated his opposition to the bill as being a "bailout" for the Chicago Public Schools (CPS), the nation's third-largest public school system.

The fiscal 2018 budget enacted by the legislature in July over Rauner's vetoes required the enactment of a so-called evidence-based education funding formula before $6.7 billion in state aid could be distributed to Illinois' 852 school districts. It's created to determine funding levels for specific districts based in part on the number of students living in poverty, lacking English-language skills and other data-driven measurements.

Sen. Andy Manar is a Democrat from Bunker Hill.

"If these legislators can't come to an agreement immediately on the new funding bill, they should simply go back to the funding bill we had previous year as flawed as it is", he said. The first payment from the state for schools is already past due.

Meanwhile, smaller school districts in the state are anxious if they'll have enough funding to start on time. Democratic leaders say they'll attempt to override the Republican governor's amendatory veto.

71 members of the House (a three-fifths majority) must also vote to override - which may prove to be more hard, as just 60 voted for SB 1 the first time - or the legislation dies without a contingency plan in place. None has indicated it won't open, but most say they can't hold class all year without state money.

She said Madison County plans to release local property taxes early in an effort to help with school funding.

Manar is urging the House to follow its lead or come up with a bipartisan compromise similar to SB1.

But he said short of a deal, the House should also vote to override. We also agree that SB 1 provides a funding model that more equitably funds our schools and gives all students an opportunity to succeed. "It shows that for years the state has been sending money to Chicago at the expense of the rest of the state", Rauner said.

"I've been very clear that the governor's amendatory veto as it stands is a bad thing for public schools and not just here, but across the state", said District 87 Superintendent Barry Reilly.

"I feel like while some of our state level legislators have failed us failed our children our county government is stepping up", said Griffin.

"The numbers bear out how broken our system is and how important our changes are".

Two hours before the Senate action to override Rauner, the governor implored lawmakers to embrace his changes and recognize "true fairness and equity".

Senate President John Cullerton issued a statement saying IL parents and children have waited long enough for "needed overhaul". "I hope the House will be able to do the same and finally bring the reform IL public schools need".