Monday, February 23, 2009
House WM votes to block school money; rally Thurs
PHOENIX -- This morning at the Capitol I hosted and talked with kids, teachers and parents from Miles Elementary School, located in my Tucson district. This afternoon, five members of the AZ House Ways and Means Committee, all Republicans, voted today to take $258M a year away from schools and children and instead put it in the pockets of corporations.
The three Democrats on the committee all spoke out against this and voted wisely to restore the much needed education funding.
If the legislature simply does nothing this year, the education equalization assesment will help boost funding for our poor schools, as was always the plan.
In 2008, Arizona was already near the bottom for education funding in the US, and this year it is getting worse. The destructive reality is the GOP majority further gutted education in the FY09 budget 'fix', now wants to cut way more in FY10, and at the same time is moving to make AZ's fiscal situation worse with more tax giveaways to corporations. This irresponsibility is outrageous, totally unacceptable and jeopardizes our future.
You can do something about it. Join the Rally for Public Education this Thurs. Feb 26 at the Capitol, organized by Sunnyside Education Association in my Tucson south side district 29. Save money and skip the traffic with a free bus ride. Buses leave at 7:30 a.m. from Desert View High School, 4101 E. Valencia Road, and Sunnyside High School, 1725 E. Bilby Road., Tucson. Contact rally4publiced(at)email.com for more info.
Tonight at ASU, I and 13 other legislative Democrats listened to Arizonans tell their stories about how they are being hurt by these unprecedented budget cuts. It was the fourth public budget hearing I've participated in statewide.
At all the hearings I've been at, from Tucson to Phoenix to Flagstaff, not one legislator who voted for these cuts has had the guts to show up to explain their positions and listen to people, even though they have been invited.