State's school funding process is failing
Original post made by Stacey on Nov 20, 2009
Some mandates have broad support from districts, teachers and parents. And district administrators appreciate how earmarking funds rather than providing them as block grants keeps them from being entirely consumed by teacher salary increases in union contract talks.
Yet the Legislature's tendency to promulgate one-size-fits-all policies puts local administrators in an intolerable position.
Moreover, the system holds local schools hostage to the state's roller-coaster fiscal cycle and chuckleheaded budget policies in Sacramento.
Consider what happened after Schwarzenegger slashed the car tax in 2003. That money (this year it would have been more than $6 billion) had been going to cities and counties. In the aftermath of the cutback, the state made the localities whole by handing over to them property taxes that had been going to school districts, then covered the districts' loss from the general fund -- which made it look like the state was giving the schools more money.
""For years we've said this is a problem, and for years the governor and the Legislature haven't done anything about it,"
Passing a parcel tax is not going to address these problems. They've been going on for years and will continue if no attention is given to it. All I see a parcel tax doing is helping legislators to kick the ball further down the field.