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Burzichelli Continues to Express Concern about School Funding in Proposed State Budget

Assembly Appropriations Chairman John Burzichelli (D-Gloucester/Salem/Cumberland) during Wednesday’s Assembly Budget Committee hearing continued to express concern about school funding in the proposed state budget.“I think people are pleased with the idea that the governor is optimistic we’ll spend more money on public education. The criticism is – as you’ll recall hearing last year – was how the formula is being funded against the money we have.
“We can’t have the kind of gaps we have, if you’re running the formula proportionate to the money you have…
“So I would never suggest you’re not telling me what you don’t believe to be true, but I don’t believe that what they told you is true, because how do you run the formula and come up with something with the kind of disparaging numbers we have? One district is funded at 42 percent and another district funded at 120 percent. That’s not the formula.
“With my understanding of how the formula should work, based on how the Supreme Court recognized the formula as being sound, these numbers just don’t work. And frankly, for the purpose of a new governor coming in, got off on a very bad foot on the public discussion that I think could have been avoided if there been a little more back-and-forth looking to what adjustments were made last year and the commitments that were made.”