School aid certification delay advanced

Lawmakers advanced a bill Jan. 31 that would delay the deadline for certifying state aid, budget authority and applicable allowable reserve percentages for state aid to schools.

<a href='http://news.legislature.ne.gov/dist42' target='_blank' title='Link to the website of Sen. Mike Groene'>Sen. Mike Groene</a>
Sen. Mike Groene

LB119, introduced by Sen. Mike Groene of North Platte, would delay the deadline from March 1 to June 1 for 2017 only. The later date would allow the Legislature to make adjustments as it considers options for addressing the state’s budget shortfall.

Groene said such a delay has been used at least 15 times since the Tax Equity and Educational Opportunities Support Act (TEEOSA), which provides state aid to schools, was created in 1990.

“We want to provide the Appropriations Committee ample time to arrive at a budget recommendation and to give this body ample time to determine how much money is available for state aid and TEEOSA,” he said. “We do not want to make a financial promise to our schools and then break that promise if we can help from doing that.”

Lawmakers voted 29-1 to advance the bill to select file.

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