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GOP Wis. Senate President proposes increase in school state aid

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School funding referendum graphic
School funding referendum graphic

MADISON, WI (WTAQ) - Wisconsin’s GOP Senate president says public schools should get a little more state funding, without having to beg the voters for it.

Mike Ellis of Neenah said Friday he’ll propose a state budget amendment that would give schools $150 more per student in each of the next two years.

Governor Scott Walker proposed a slight increase in total state school aid – but he refused to increase the current school revenue limits.

The Republican Walker said he wanted to guard against increases in the local property taxes which help pay for public schools. If voters wanted to give the extra aid to the schools, they could approve referendums, just like they do now.

Ellis’s plan would raise local taxes by an extra $153-million over the two-year budget period – and by shifting budgeted funds, another $229-million could be generated for the schools.

Walker’s office has not commented on the idea.

Ellis told the AP that Senate Education Committee chair Luther Olsen supports the extra aid – and he’s asking other GOP lawmakers to endorse the change as well.

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