January 10, 2017
By Stephanie West
Albany, NY – Speaker Carl Heastie offered a vision for New York State in his remarks to open the 2017 Legislative Session. The first issue he addressed was equitable funding for New York State’s public schools.
Speaker Heastie said that, “No investment is worth more than education” and his first commitment was to “fully phase in CFE.” According to the New York State Board of Regents schools are owed $4.3 billion in Campaign for Fiscal Equity funding with the majority owed to schools with high populations of Black, Latino and immigrant students. He also called for a millionaires’ tax that creates a fair and progressive revenue system.
“Speaker Heastie has thrown down the marker insisting on fully funding CFE, to provide the money owed to our children,” said Jasmine Gripper, legislative director for the Alliance for Quality Education. “Fair funding of our schools is fundamentally an issue of racial and economic justice. At a time when Donald Trump is threatening an assault on public education, we need the Governor and the Senate to join with the Assembly Majority and finally deliver the CFE funding. AQE would like to commend Speaker Heastie for his commitment to leadership on CFE.”
The Assembly Majority and the Independent Democratic Conference (IDC) in the Senate are both calling for a full phase-in of Foundation Aid.
“We are pleased to see this commitment to fully fund CFE from the IDC. It is imperative that they use their power and influence to deliver their coalition partners. It’s time for the entire Senate Majority to commit to fully funding our schools,” said Gripper.