Monday, April 11, 2011

Meeting with State Rep. Lyons in Lowell

Elizabeth Lykins, Tina Murua, Melissa Janes and I met with Rep. Lyons today.  We were able to share our concern that the 4% cut (as she kept stating the severe cuts proposed to school funding) would be made up with a 20% contribution by teachers to health insurance.  We explained that even if this salary cut for teachers goes through, this makes only half of the $1.5 million deficit for next year.  Ms. Lyons was needing some language from the original Proposal A language and we were able to show her the language in the letter from EGPRS which has the Prop A language.  Elizabeth and Tina were able to ask a strategic question.  If placing community colleges and universities in the School Aid Fund is legal under proposal A, then the millages that community colleges have asked for and voters have passed to provide operating dollars must be illegal.  If those millages were legal, then it is illegal to place community colleges and universities in the School Aid Fund.  Ms. Lyons furiously wrote down this argument and plans to take it with her to Lansing.  Ms. Lyons acknowledged that education is important and listened to our stories about our schools.  Please continue to call our legislators about your stories.