Senate Committees Hear Governor's Plan to Fund Schools - KXNet.com - Bismarck/Minot/Williston/Dickinson-KXNEWS,ND

Senate Committees Hear Governor's Plan to Fund Schools

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Bismarck, ND -

Some lawmakers and school superintendents have concerns with a new funding formula for schools.

Governor Jack Dalrymple says while a few areas of the bill need to be tweaked, it is still the best option for funding K-12 education and while passing down property tax relief at the same time.

However some say the plan is far from perfect.

House members changed the bill, resulting in $6 million in lost funding for school districts serving Native American communities.

Amendments are being worked on to correct the flaw.

In addition, other schools say this new funding plan penalizes them and will mean less in state funding.

Superintendent of North Border School District, Paul Stremick says, "I don't believe school districts have asked for this formula, I really don't. Everyone is scared now when it's rolled into the tax relief that caps and things of that nature are just something that puts every school district on edge."

"The K-12 school district mill levy is the best place and the best way for the state to provide property tax relief, and we can for the first time in state history actually talk about a true limitation on local taxing authority," says Governor Jack Dalrymple.

In addition the bill seeks to raise the minimum teacher salary $5,000 to $27,500.

The average teacher is paid $32,000 in North Dakota.

Education proponents say that should be the minimum wage.

The legislature has not touched teacher minimum wages in 10 years.

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