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Two concerns addressed in a Budget Reform

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By KMVT News

Twin Falls, Idaho (KMVT-TV)

Education is a main concern to every parent especially a new one like Jessica James.

That new found worry is because of her seven–month–old son, hunter.

"Education in this state obviously being a new parent myself is pretty intimidating; I know that a lot of things right now with the curriculum that were trying to establish here is very scary."

Idaho schools receive a onetime fund amount of 32.5 million dollars for the fiscal year of 2014.

The director of the Idaho center for fiscal policy, Mike Ferguson, deals with funding every day.

He wants to permanently add 34.54 million more in the fiscal year of 2015 to the "Maintenance of Effort" section.

"We are ahead of only one other state in terms of our total dollars spent per pupil for our expenditures and basically over the past decade what it shows is that every state has exceeded Idaho in terms of its ongoing supply for public schools in other words we have slipped behind every state in the union."

This would boost the compensation for public schools to 8 percent as opposed to only 3 percent in the governor's budget.

Health and Welfare is also at the fore front for concern budget wise.

Ferguson says they want to restore most of the cuts primarily to persons with serious disabilities.

With this alternative budget they would be restoring 35 million to the department of health and welfare.

For parents in our community.. Like James.. It's encouraging to know these concerns are on the table.

The budget recommendation for 2014 reflects governor Otter's priorities including growing government at a lower rate than the economy; replenishing reserve funds that were depleted during the recession; and returning the state budget to a structural balance.


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