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Thanks for the Shanna Fortier story on education funding (“Advocates, lawmakers back efforts to bolster education funding,” March 29). I think the funding situation can be understood by everyone.
Regardless of Amendment 23, TABOR, Gallagher, the negative factor and all the talk of how complex funding is, if we look at the fundamental principles of public education we can clearly see the problem. Under the Colorado Constitution we have the responsibility to “provide for the establishment and maintenance of a thorough and uniform system of free public schools throughout the state”.
That is not being done. Special interests, voters on auto-pilot and secure politicians have tilted funding to benefit wealthy and powerful districts.
To demonstrate this fact, consider that if Denver school taxes were the same as Adams 12 school taxes; there would be over $12,000 per student raised compared to about $4,000 Adams 12 can raise. If Boulder Valley taxpayers paid the same taxes as Adams 12; Boulder would have over $14,000 per student. To honor our constitutional responsibility, state equalization funding should go to the disadvantaged districts, not the wealthy ones. The proposed formula being considered will continue the unfairness.
School funding should be publicly, accurately and honestly discussed during the upcoming election races in both House and Senate districts. As the designated Republican candidate for House District 35 I am ready, willing and able to share my thoughts and ideas with the voters. I challenge all other candidates to join with me in a fact-based conversation. The Window can host.
Bruce Baker, Westminster
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