Saturday, July 2, 2022

Play

The U.S. Supreme Court strips the EPA's power to curb pollution, California takes a big step toward universal health care, and a Florida judge will temporarily block the state's 15-week abortion ban.

Play

SCOTUS significantly limits the Clean Air Act and rules against the "Stay in Mexico" policy, Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson is sworn in to office, and President Biden endorses a filibuster carveout for abortion rights.

Play

From flying saucers to bologna: America's summer festivals kick off, rural hospitals warn they do not have the necessities to respond in the post-Roe scramble, advocates work to counter voter suppression, and campaigns encourage midterm voting in Indian Country.

ALEC's Next Wisconsin Target: Public Education

Play

Monday, October 26, 2015   

MADISON, Wis. - After targeting three of Wisconsin's long-standing laws regarding clean government, which are currently in play at the state capitol, the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC) will next turn its sights on public education in Wisconsin, says Madison Democrat and State Representative Chris Taylor.

Taylor says ALEC was involved in the effort to change campaign finance laws, to gut the Government Accountability Board, and to exempt public officials from John Doe probes. Next, she says, ALEC will push Republican legislators to attack public education in Wisconsin.

"This is a movement not coming from the people of the state of Wisconsin," says Taylor. "This is a national effort to privatize public education so corporations can make a buck. That's really what this is about. Doesn't help our kids, doesn't help our state."

Republicans defend their moves to revise campaign finance laws and the two other pieces of legislation as needed updates and revisions of outdated laws. Clean government advocates disagree, and none of the legislators affiliated with ALEC contacted for this report would comment.

Taylor says since the Republicans took power in 2011, they have cut $1.2 billion from public education in the state and will push even harder to privatize it.

Taylor says the state is now spending more than a $1,000 less per public school student than it did in 2008, and that funds that should go to public education are now being diverted to private schools via the state's voucher program. Taylor says the next move will be to try to institute Education Savings Accounts.

"What that will do is totally decimate public education, because you will not be able to maintain the public school infrastructure that we have throughout our state when there's not that consistent, predictable funding for that infrastructure," she says. "And that is the point of these Education Savings Accounts."

According to Taylor, the accounts would consist of public money deposited into student accounts that parents could spend on any educational system, something she says will divert vast sums of public money away from the state's public schools.

Taylor, who recently attended an ALEC conference just to learn what the organization was planning, says the push toward more private school vouchers and Education Savings Accounts goes against the state's strong history of great public education.

"It's in our constitution," she says. "Our constitution directs legislators to invest in our public school system, to make sure we're maintaining the public school system. We don't have an obligation to maintain private schools - that's not where taxpayer money should be going."


get more stories like this via email

In calling Florida's new 15-week abortion ban unconstitutional, Florida Circuit Judge John Cooper said, "Florida passed into its constitution an explicit right to privacy that is not contained in the U.S. Constitution." (fotodigitalmunioz/Pixabay)

Health and Wellness

A Florida judge plans to put a hold on the state's new, 15-week abortion ban, set to take effect today. He said it is unconstitutional and will issue …


Environment

The Environmental Protection Agency now has fewer tools to fight climate change, after the U.S. Supreme Court stripped the agency of its authority to …

Social Issues

Three projects in Idaho have been selected to receive grants from the AARP Community Challenge. Among them is the Anne Frank Human Rights Memorial in …


Northern Plains Resource Council is holding presentations on soil health at farms and ranches across Montana. (Northern Plains Resource Council)

Environment

Montanans get a sense of what soil health is like on farms and ranches across the state with Northern Plains Resource Council's soil crawls. The …

Social Issues

A new tool aims to help older adults in Arkansas and beyond who receive Medicare track what happens at their doctor appointments. It also can help …

Proponents of a consumer-owned utility say as Maine works to improve the power grid, it is important to hold power companies in the state accountable. (Adobe Stock)

Social Issues

A campaign in Maine is gathering signatures to replace the state's investor-owned energy grid with a consumer-owned utility. Central Maine Power (…

Social Issues

Another important U.S. Supreme Court ruling this month has been overshadowed by the controversy about overturning abortion rights. Legal experts say …

Social Issues

By Sarah Melotte for The Daily Yonder.Broadcast version by Eric Galatas for Colorado News Connection for the Public News Service/Daily Yonder Collabor…

 

Phone: 303.448.9105 Toll Free: 888.891.9416 Fax: 208.247.1830 Your trusted member- and audience-supported news source since 1996 Copyright 2021