Text Size
Login
config

State education leaders confirm Rauner plan bad for public schools, local taxpayers

isbe approp 022718SPRINGFIELD – The governor’s plan to dump the state’s share of teacher pension costs on local school districts would have devastating effects on classrooms and learning throughout Illinois, state education officials said Tuesday.
 
The testimony of State Superintendent of Schools Tony Smith and other education officials during a Senate budget hearing confirms what Democratic and Republican lawmakers have been saying since Gov. Bruce Rauner unveiled his budget plan Feb. 14.
 
“The governor is playing the game of trickling expenses down to local districts. My school leaders are already facing high levels of unpredictability and uncertainty. They’re unable to carry a half-billion dollars in new spending that the governor is putting on them,” said State Senator Jennifer Bertino-Tarrant, a Democrat from Plainfield and a member of the Senate Appropriations II Committee.


Bertino-Tarrant said she’s open to a policy discussion about whether there’s a responsible way to transition some costs over a longer term, but agreed Rauner’s four-year plan to shift $2 billion in state responsibilities to schools would wreak havoc and undermines lawmakers’ historic efforts to invest in public education.
 
Rauner’s proposed education budget includes an increase of $350 million required by the state’s new school funding formula. However, his proposal also would require schools to bear $490 million in unexpected pension costs.
 
Local schools end up losing in the Rauner deal. Education advocates who have analyzed the governor’s plan warn that layoffs, reduced services, a widening of the student to teacher ratio and even drastically higher property taxes are probable if it is implemented.

Sen. Bertino-Tarrant

bertino-tarrant 150

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


49th Senate District

Years served: 2013 - Present

Associated Representatives: Mark Batinick; Natalie A. Manley

Committee assignments: Appropriations II; Education (Chairperson); Labor; Licensed Activities and Pensions; Transportation.

Biography: Lifelong educator; former Will County superintendent and secretary of Will County Regional Board of School Trustees; B.A., Illinois State University; MS, University of St. Francis; EdD., Loyola.