Legislature(2005 - 2006)
2005-01-18 House JournalFull Journal pdf
2005-01-18 House Journal Page 0091 HB 73 HOUSE BILL NO. 73 by the House Rules Committee by request of the Governor, entitled: "An Act increasing the base student allocation for state financing of public schools; and providing for an effective date." was read the first time and referred to the House Special Committee on Education and the Health, Education & Social Services and Finance Committees. 2005-01-18 House Journal Page 0092 The following fiscal note(s) apply: 1. Fiscal, Dept. of Education & Early Development 2. Fiscal, Dept. of Education & Early Development The Governor's transmittal letter dated January 12, 2005, follows: "Dear Speaker Harris: Under the authority of art. III, sec. 18, of the Alaska Constitution, I am transmitting a bill that would raise the base student allocation for students attending public school grade levels kindergarten through 12 (K-12) over the next two years. This bill is an important component of my effort to forward-finance K-12 public education at a level that meets the increased costs our school districts have seen in recent years. Under the bill, the base student allocation would increase to $4,880 for fiscal year 2006, and to $5,190 for fiscal year 2007 and subsequent years. Currently, the base student allocation is set at $4,576. My proposal will result in a $62 million increase for school districts in FY 06 and a $64 million increase in FY 07. In FY 06, school districts will face an estimated $39 million increase in Public Employees' Retirement System and Teachers' Retirement System with an additional $40 million increase in FY 07. Combined with inflation, the escalating price of keeping our promise to retired teachers and school employees has unintentionally placed our public school system in a budget crisis. School districts are forced to eliminate essential programs and staff making it increasingly more difficult to provide the highest quality of education possible for our children. The funding blueprint I am presenting in this bill will cover those burdensome cost increases over the next two years, allowing our school administrators to proactively manage their budgets so teachers can focus on improving student achievement. I urge your prompt and favorable action on this measure, so very important to the future of Alaska's public schools and our children. Sincerely yours, /s/ Frank H. Murkowski Governor"