State Senate approves school funding plan.

from Washington Votes News
Posted 2/17/2016

On Tuesday, the Senate passed SB 6195 by a vote of 26-23, to create a task force on basic education funding issues. As amended, the bill matches HB 2366, approved by the House in January. It would require the 2017 Legislature to collect data on teacher compensation from local school districts, and to end the reliance on local school levies referred to by the state supreme court in its McLeary decision.

The Senate-passed bill now goes to the House, with approval likely because both chambers have passed identical bills,

Governor Inslee said in a statement praising lawmakers: “It is great news to see that both the House and Senate have passed legislation with bipartisan support to ensure we continue the necessary next steps towards fully funding our schools.”

Senators from both parties said passage of the bill is a step forward, but is far from a full resolution. Sen. Bruce Dammeier (R-Puyallup) said he was reluctant to support the bill, because “all it does is push the solution out another year.” Sen. Kevin Ranker (D-Orcas Island) voted for the bill, but said that the bill “does not solve the problem.”

The House and Senate will continue to consider bills on their respective floor calendars until 5:00 p.m. today. After that, the legislative focus will shift to committee activity until the next cutoff deadline on Friday, February 26th, the last day for committees to approve bills passed by the opposite chamber. The regular session is scheduled to adjourn on Thursday, March 10th.

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