By Kimberly Beltran
Friday, March 09, 2012
Continuing their calls for in-depth policy review of Gov. Jerry Brown’s education finance restructuring plan, much of the state’s education coalition lined up Thursday to impress upon a Senate budget subcommittee the impacts the governor’s proposals could have on California schools and the millions of students they serve.
Meanwhile, Senate Republicans raised the specter of the school finance plan going behind closed doors, noting a move by majority Democrats to advance 40 “spot” budget bills – any of which could be used to carry the restructuring plan as part of the budget process.
In a statement issued after Thursday morning’s floor session, the Republican Caucus accused Senate Democrats of passing “empty shell budget bills” with the goal being “to set up a last minute budget vote that lacks transparency and public involvement.”
… Members of the Republican Caucus also have been tracking legislator and educator pleas to put the education reform plan through policy committees of both houses, as opposed to running it through the budget process, and they used those words to make their point on Thursday.
“Over the past few weeks Senate Republicans have listened in Budget Committee as several members that were on the Senate floor today stated the governor’s budget proposals need further policy debate and discussion in Committee,” they wrote.
“These empty “spot” bills should be referred to the appropriate budget subcommittee (or policy committee) for that discussion to take place. They should be amended in those budget committees as needed to reflect those discussions and the public should have the opportunity to see that language in print before it is voted on and sent to the Assembly.”
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