Hammond demands compromise to get state funds to schools
Legislators need to come together on a compromise to ensure public schools get state funding this year, Assistant House Minority Leader Norine Hammond (R-Macomb) said in a recent statement.
Hammond expressed her frustration at tactics like the House voting on Senate Bill 1947 rather than taking up Senate Bill 1, the K-12 funding measure. SB1 had been sent to the House after the Senate voted on Aug. 13 to override Gov. Bruce Rauner's amendatory veto of it.
“SB1947 received no support because, in short, it was a sham bill put to a vote as a political game," Hammond said in her statement. "SB1947 was a hostile bill sponsored by House and Senate Democrats with no chance of passing because it included harmful language to districts all around the state.”
Hammond also noted that the legislative tactic used by Senate Democrats to hold SB1 off of Rauner’s desk for two months could throw school funding into jeopardy. Final legislative action on SB1 had to be taken by May 31, when the bill was passed, for it to go into effect before 2018, but a motion to reconsider was not withdrawn until July 31. Hammond contended that there is no clear legal authority on which date should count as final action on the bill.
“On top of this legal issue, SB1 does not have the support of 71 members in the House of Representatives required to override the amendatory veto,” Hammond said in her statement. “Therefore, the only path forward that will settle this matter and ensure funding for our K-12 schools is a negotiated compromise."