Senators' concerns range from the constitutionality of the education cuts to the resulting increase in local taxes. The administration's claims that the budget doesn't raise taxes are "not a fact," they say.
Gov. Dunleavy campaigned on a limited platform. He stood in support of education, promised to be tough on crime, and argued for a full Permanent Fund dividend. Wednesday, he also said he ran on a platform of fixing the budget.
Rural school board members told senators that they have cut everything that they can. Students said it's affecting their lives.
In a House meeting, OMB acknowledged education is not a top priority as they seek $20 million in cuts. The Dunleavy administration may hold the money until the end of the fiscal year if it doesn't get what it wants.
UAA's School of Education lost accreditation for its largest programs. UA President Jim Johnsen called it "a fundamental failure." A long-term fix has not been identified.
Senate Democrats say Gov. Dunleavy is breaking a promise with his proposed $23 million cut to education, but his OMB director is "the one with the hatchet."
Proposed $23 million cuts to education have surprised legislators and school districts alike. Additional cuts to VPSOs undermine Gov. Dunleavy's public safety message.
Gov. Michael J. Dunleavy was tough on crime, heavy on populist rhetoric, and skipped education altogether in his first State of the State address.
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