Mar 22, 2007

Senate GOP trades one latte mocha a week for $377 million education cut

Apparently, giving up one cup latte mocha at Starbuck a week was too much for Senate Republicans, and they voted down the Governor’s plan for a 2-penny investment on services.

The Republicans could not afford $1.33 a week, so they rejected Senate Bill 307 that implements the bipartisan 2-penny tax by an almost straight party vote of 22-16. Instead of adjusting to the changing U.S. economy, the Senate Republicans preferred to stay in the past, and they will try and implement cuts in the very services that attract and retain business to the state. The shortsighted decision will create a Catch-22 situation ensuring the economic crisis will only get worse.

One of the cuts Senate Majority Leader Mike Bishop has been guarding like it was the Holy Grail finally came to light today when they cut $377 million from the school aid fund. That will means a $34 cut per student in the current school year that ends in a couple of months.

That $1.33 investment the Senate Republicans refuse to invest in their state and pay their fair share will cost Howell Public Schools alone more than $2.8 million.

The Republicans still want to cut $600 million from the current budget, but you can be sure the planed cuts will be secret until they are actually made, so that there will be no opposition from the public or criticism of the Senate GOP.

The only good news is the saner House intends to work on its own plan that will involve cuts, reforms and likely tax increases. The Democratic controlled House is so committed to solving the budget crisis that also keeps the essential services intact that are so vital to our economic recovery that they have canceled its two-week spring break that was to start April 3.

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