House Passes Annual School Finance Bill

(April 30) – The House voted 52-12 today to approve the annual school finance bill, which appropriates state funds to Colorado’s K-12 schools and related programs.

SB13-260, sponsored in the House by Rep. Millie Hamner (D-Dillon), increases state support for local school districts by $51.8 million. This increase represents a small step toward reducing a $1 billion K-12 funding shortfall created by the Great Recession.

The bill also increases funding for special education, charter schools and the Colorado Preschool Program, and invests in a quality teacher recruitment program designed to attract great teachers to schools across Colorado that have struggled to recruit or retain highly qualified teachers.

“It’s a relief to be able to do a little more for our students this year,” Rep. Hamner said. “We’ve had to cut corners for far too long.”

Because it was amended, the bill goes back to the Senate for concurrence.

While SB-260 deals with funding for the 2013-14 year, Rep. Hamner is also sponsoring SB13-213, which reforms the school funding formula for future years. SB13-213 passed the House on Monday.

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