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NV Lawmakers to Consider Governor's $882 Million Education Request

PHOTO: Gov. Brian Sandoval's $882 million proposed increase for education is among the items state lawmakers will consider. Democrats are voicing initial concerns that it might not be enough. Photo courtesy Governor Brian Sandoval.
PHOTO: Gov. Brian Sandoval's $882 million proposed increase for education is among the items state lawmakers will consider. Democrats are voicing initial concerns that it might not be enough. Photo courtesy Governor Brian Sandoval.
February 4, 2015

CARSON CITY, Nev. - The 2015 Nevada legislative session is under way, and one of the largest items of business to be considered is Gov. Brian Sandoval's nearly $900 million proposed increase for education funding.

The Republican governor announced his proposal during the State of the State speech last month. Senate Minority Leader Aaron Ford, D-Las Vegas, said he welcomes the governor's action but is not yet certain that it's enough money to overcome Nevada's educational challenges.

"We have not yet had the opportunity to vet his plan," Ford said, "to hear the testimony relative to why he thinks that's a sufficient number to support the policies the Democrats have been pushing for for years."

Sandoval's plan would generate new revenue by increasing the state's business license fee from a flat $200 for some businesses, and for others, change it to a percentage of revenues based on specific industries.

In his State of the State address, Sandoval said Nevada has the nation's lowest high school graduation rate, as well as lowest preschool attendance rate in the country. He said improving those kinds of statistics requires investment now.

"It's no mystery; Nevada's new companies will need a highly skilled workforce," Sandoval said. "Improving our public education system must therefore begin with modernization, and modernization requires investment."

The governor said his proposal would benefit students at risk, gifted and talented students and literacy programs, as well as graduation and career-readiness programs.

Troy Wilde, Public News Service - NV