Archive for Monday, March 31, 2014

Kansas House panel leader resigns over school bill

March 31, 2014

— The House Appropriations Committee’s chairman has resigned from the committee because he says he can’t support a school funding plan drafted by the chamber’s Republican leaders.

Newton Republican Marc Rhoades resigned Monday, just before the start of his committee’s hearings on the plan.

The proposal seeks to address two flaws in funding for poor school districts identified by the Kansas Supreme Court in a March 7 ruling in a school funding lawsuit. The court said the state must boost aid to poor districts.

The fix is estimated to cost $129 million, but the House plan would fund part of that increase by adjusting transportation aid to school districts.

Rhoades said even with the offset, the new spending isn’t sustainable. He said his resignation allows the bill to move forward.

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