News Column

Brown Supports Proposal Aimed at Closing the Gap on State Education Funding

January 29, 2014

HARRISBURG, Pa. , Jan. 29 -- The Pennsylvania State House Republican Caucus issued the following news release on the behalf of Pennsylvania State Rep. Rosemary Brown : At a press conference held at the Capitol today, Rep. Rosemary Brown (R- Monroe / Pike ) spoke in favor of a new proposal that would increase education funding to Pennsylvania school districts that receive less than 35 percent of their funding from the state. Brown supports the measure being sponsored by Rep. Todd Stephens (R- Montgomery ), which would establish the Local Effort Equalization Fund (LEEF) as a supplement to the Basic Education Funding (BEF) formula to assist taxpayers in school districts where state funding is lower. "The current status of the district I represent vividly illustrates the discrepancy in school funding, and this has been a focus of mine here in Harrisburg since taking office," Brown said following the press conference. "There should never be one school district receiving 76 percent of its funding from the state, while another is receiving 24 percent. I think it is unfair to our local taxpayers." The 189th Legislative District includes the following school districts, followed by the breakdown of the percentage they receive from the Commonwealth: * East Stroudsburg Area School District - 23.5 percent * Pleasant Valley School District - 42.1 percent * Stroudsburg Area School District - 23.5 percent * Delaware Valley School District - 34.6 percent The LEEF would be funded by transferring $250 million from slot machine tax revenue currently going to the Race Horse Development Fund (RHDF). Since its inception, the RHDF has received more than $1.7 billion . According to the most recent data available, 211 school districts would benefit from this supplement. "The intent of this legislation is not to hurt other school districts, but to strive to create a fair system to ensure all school districts and taxpayers are treated fairly," said Brown. "I support Representative Stephens' effort to create this fund to help supplement school districts throughout the state." In addition to this proposal, Brown recently voted in favor of House Bill 1738, which would establish a bipartisan commission to study and make recommendations for a new formula for distributing state funding to K-12 education. The commission would study the BEF, and would be tasked with developing a formula that takes into account each school district's market value/personal income aid ratio, equalized millage rate, geographic price differences, enrollment levels, local support and other factors. "House Bill 1738 is a result of the strong efforts I have helped push in Harrisburg regarding the need for an updated funding formula to ensure our local school districts are receiving their fair share of funding from the state," said Brown. House Bill 1738 now moves to the Senate for consideration. Rep. Brown's Video Comments: Click here to view Video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&list=UUQTqhHFvDExo5v37aiyXPqw&v=gHiIjM6XogE For more information, contact Brown's district office located at 696 Seven Bridge Road , Suite 101, East Stroudsburg , by calling 570-420-8301. Information on legislative news can also be found on RepBrown.com and on Facebook.com/RepRosemaryBrown . CC AutoTriage5rn-140130-30FurigayJane-4618927 30FurigayJane


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Source: Targeted News Service


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