Posted: Apr 9, 2013 8:52 AM by Lindsey Gordon - MTN News
HELENA - The Montana House Education Committee had one item on its agenda on Monday afternoon, a hearing for Senate Bill 175, the $120 million bill for education funding.
The room was full as the committee held a hearing for this student achievement-based education funding bill.
Although the bill is sponsored by Llew Jones (R-Conrad), it has gained support from Senate Democrats.
The piece of legislation attempts to change the top-down structure of education funding to a more direct-to-the schools approach.
"It is more complex. The more we increase your ability to choose where you spend dollars, the more responsibility you will have to take. The greater the probability of an error. But you know, we either want our local trustees to have some real control or we want them to be able to pick the color of their band uniforms," Conrad explained.
The measure allows the allocation of the production tax from oil and natural gas revenues to fund schools, while alleviating school district property taxes.