Governor To Apply Amendatory Veto on Education Funding Bill

It takes a three-fifths majority to override and a simple majority to agree with the Governor.

[In original article, I mistakenly said it took only a simple majority to override an amendatory veto. Thanks to commenter Alabama Shake for the correction.]

A press release from Governor Bruce Rauner:

Governor Rauner calls on State Senate to send him education funding bill

-Governor plans to issue amendatory veto, which will result in more state funding for almost every school district in Illinois-

Mt. Zion, Ill. (July 17, 2017) – Today, Governor Bruce Rauner called on members of the Illinois Senate to send him Senate Bill 1, the education funding bill.

Democrats in the Illinois Senate are using a procedural quirk to keep the bill from advancing.

If the bill is not sent to Governor Rauner’s desk soon, public schools throughout the state may not open in time for the new school year.

In squatting on this bill, Democrats are taking away critical resources from school districts across the state.

When the bill does reach his desk, Governor Rauner plans to issue an amendatory veto that will result in higher state funding for almost every school district in Illinois.

The bill includes a bailout of Chicago’s broken teacher pension system, so Governor Rauner plans to amend SB 1 to remove this from the bill and instead provide adequate and equitable funding for students in Illinois no matter their zip code.

The governor’s amendatory veto also will adjust the bill so that it is more closely aligned with the to the original ideals proposed by the governor’s School Funding Reform Commission – which has bipartisan support. These reforms include mandating that the majority of all money in SB 1 will go to statewide school districts serving a majority of students from families with low income. This marks a historic change that will, over time, fix education inequity in Illinois.

Bruce Rauner

“We have a chance to make history and adopt a new school funding plan that, for the first time, ensures all school districts in Illinois are equitably and adequately funded. Unfortunately, Democrats want to turn this historic opportunity into a bailout for the CPS pension system,” said Governor Rauner. “The point of this school reform bill is to help low income students across the state, including those in Chicago, get the education they deserve – not to bailout CPS’s mismanaged teacher pension system.”

As written, SB 1 is a bailout for the decades of financial mismanagement at CPS. The bill directs millions of dollars to CPS and away from other deserving districts. Under SB 1, as compared to the Governor’s plan, the other 851 school districts in Illinois will receive less of the FY18 budget money while CPS receives credit for a $506 million historical pension payment. The CPS hold harmless includes both the $250 million block grant credit and $221 million for normal pension costs and retiree health care credit.

“The General Assembly under Speaker Madigan have failed to adequately or equitably fund our schools for decades. It has hurt generations of Illinois children who live in low income communities,” said Governor Rauner. “It’s not right to give CPS more than its equitable share at the expense of other struggling school districts. That’s not reform. It is the same old rigged politics that created this disgraceful system we are trying to fix. ”

A new webpage launched by the governor shows how much more money each school district will receive after the governor issues his amendatory veto:


Governor To Apply Amendatory Veto on Education Funding Bill — 10 Comments

  1. Throwing more money at CPS will not help Children learn, throwing money at other districts might help, but freeze the salaries of all Administrators, Principals, etc to help the teachers with what they need.

    The Union does not work for the good teachers!

  2. As I see it, there are two main structural problems with SB-1.

    First, its basic premise is that lower income districts should get more money and yet there is no recognition of how much is already being spent on a per pupil basis in some of these districts.

    It fails to recognize the Law of Diminishing Returns.

    That is, after a certain point of investment, the marginal return on that incremental investment approaches zero.

    As an example, Chicago D-299 Instructional Spending per Pupil is $10,396 versus Cary D-26 of $5,494/pupil.

    Given that Chicago is spending 90% more per pupil, just on instruction alone, does anyone believe that increasing that level any higher is going to yield positive results in Chicago?

    The math holds true for almost all the big “winners” in this bill like: Waukegan, Elgin, Rockford, Cicero, Maywood, etc.

    It does also create some winners downstate which is where the incremental funding truly would yield a favorable marginal return on investment.

    For example, Decatur D-61 currently has an Instructional spending rate of only $5,147/Pupil.

    Downstate districts like this are the ones that have felt the largest impact due to underfunding from the State.

    So, given that the bulk of the incremental $350 million is allocated to districts where their Marginal Rate of Return on Investment has approached zero, one might conclude that the bulk of this money will yield virtually no favorable academic results.

    Secondly, this new methodology sets up perfectly for the future to “redistribute the wealth” from the richer districts to the poorer districts.

    If you’ll recall, the original SB-1 was written as a zero-sum game.

    It took money from suburban districts and reallocated to the low-income districts.

    By creating a lot of “Losers” in the collar counties, the bill went nowhere.

    This revised bill sets up a need-based system that has a hold-harmless feature and then allocates an additional $350 million created by the tax increase.

    It doesn’t create a long list of “Losers” like the old SB-1.

    It creates a set of Tiers based on Funding Adequacy to funnel incremental dollars.

    If you’re in Tier 1 or 2 you’ll receive an increase.

    However, Tier 3 & 4 receive next to nothing.

    I foresee this methodology being used in the future by the legislature to set up a tier structure to prorate funding.

    In the past, when the State didn’t have the funds to make 100% of its General State Aid payments, it would prorate every district’s funding by 89%, for example.

    The legislature’s only tool was to make every district suffer the pain at the same rate.

    Now, under this new funding formula, its very easy to setup a tier structure to allocate cuts based on how a district’s Local Resources compare to its Adequacy Target.

    Its easy to forecast that we’ll end up in exactly the same place as was projected under the original SB-1, with suburban districts as the “Losers” and low-income/downstate districts as the winners.

  3. **It’s a risk because an amendatory veto can be overridden by a simple majority.**

    Uh… no. To override an amendatory veto you need a super majority.

  4. I’d go even farther, Mark.

    There’s always a funding crisis in ANYTHING that’s paid for with tax dollars.

    Too much is never enough.

  5. The only answer, I figure, is to Starve the Beast.

    Maybe Angel will pass the word on.

  6. You are correct.

    My mistake.

    A simple majority is required to agree.

  7. Socialism always works until you run out of other people’s money.

    And we are definitely out!

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