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Sen. Andy Manar rejects funding changes that would bring $8.7 million more to his school districts

SPRINGFIELD (Heartland Newsfeed/Illinois Policy Institute) — The chief Senate sponsor of Senate Bill 1, State Sen. Andy Manar (D-Bunker Hill) has criticized Gov. Bruce Rauner’s amendatory veto of the new education funding bill. Rauner’s amendatory veto removed language from SB 1 that amounted to a bailout for Chicago Public Schools.

Specifically, Manar promoted a map that shows analysis by Advance Illinois claiming a large number of “losing districts” under the governor’s changes.

But an Illinois State Board of Education analysis of Rauner’s amendatory veto released August 12 directly contradicts Manar’s claims, showing more than 97% of Illinois school districts will gain additional state funding under the governor’s amendatory veto when compared with the original version of SB 1, including the schools in Manar’s own district.

All of the school districts in Manar’s Senate district will benefit under the amendatory veto. In fact, they’re set to receive an extra $ 8.7 million in funding.


But apparently, Manar would rather have his own school districts give up funding in order to continue bailing out Chicago under the original SB 1.

Manar has demanded lawmakers pass SB 1 as is, even though it contains language that preferences only CPS above all other districts.

The governor’s version of SB 1 removed the Chicago bailout by cutting several subsidies from the bill that heavily or exclusively favored CPS at the expense of other districts.

In fact, all the districts that receive extra money under Rauner’s changes to SB 1 are ones that have been bailing out Chicago for more than a decade – Manar’s districts included.

Of the $8.7 million in additional state funding that would flow to Manar’s districts under Rauner’s amendatory veto, Decatur School District 61 would benefit most of all. The district is set to gain nearly $3 million in additional funding under the governor’s amendatory veto.

The governor’s changes have restored fairness and equity to state aid by cutting special privileges to CPS out of the new funding formula.

Manar and other defenders of SB 1 shouldn’t be fighting to put the bailout of CPS ahead of their own districts.

About the Author

- Jake Leonard is the editor-in-chief of Heartland Newsfeed. He is general manager of Heartland Internet Media Networks and an active contributor to four newspapers for Pana News Group. He also serves as chairman of Tri-Counties Libertarian Party and Capital Area Libertarian Party, deputy candidate recruitment director for the Libertarian Party of Illinois and as chairman/co-founder of the Libertarian Party Millennial Caucus.

Sen. Andy Manar rejects funding changes that would bring $8.7 million more to his school districts