BELLVILLE, Ill. – Offering additional funds to cash-strapped Metro-East and downstate schools, state Rep. Jay Hoffman, D-Swansea, is urging the governor to sign legislation that dramatically reshapes education funding in Illinois and creates a fairer, more equitable system to provide support to every public school in the state.
“The way we fund education is outdated and unfair,” Hoffman said. “The current system is rigged to benefit the wealthiest communities in the Chicago suburbs at the expense of children here in the Metro-East and downstate. The educational opportunities that our children receive should not depend on the zip-code that they live in.”
Hoffman voted for Senate Bill 1 to overhaul the state school funding formula and distribute state money to K-12 schools more equitably. The measure would ensure that schools throughout Illinois are funded fairly and would invest $6,261,854 new dollars to local schools in the 113th district. A coalition of Metro-East and downstate superintendents support the legislation as a beneficial and practical solution for local schools.
Currently, the state of Illinois contributes the fourth lowest amount to education of any state, even though the Illinois constitution mandates the state serve as the primary funder of education. As a result, local communities have to make up the state’s short fall in education funding—causing property taxes to make up the funding gap.
Senate Bill 1 passed the House and Senate and currently awaits approval by the governor. In a recent interview Governor Rauner’s Education Secretary, Beth Purvis, was quoted as saying that the governor supports “90 percent” of the proposal.
“Our current formula shortchanges downstate schools, leading to an overreliance on property taxes and burdensome taxes on our homes,” Hoffman said. “I urge the governor to sign this much-needed reform that superintendents across the state are supporting. This is a fair and equitable plan that gives Metro-East schools the resources they need to open their doors this fall.”
Rep Jay Hoffman
261-S Stratton Office Building
Springfield, IL 62706
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312 S. High St.
Belleville, IL 62220
(618) 416-7409 FAX