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K-12 bonding recommendations

Published (2/22/2008)
By Thomas Hammell
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The House K-12 Finance Division sent its education funding omnibus bill to the House Education Finance and Economic Competitiveness Finance Division Feb. 20.

HF2558, sponsored by Rep. Mary Murphy (DFL-Hermantown), started as a library improvement and accessibility bill, but was amended to become the division’s omnibus finance bill.

A companion, SF2682, sponsored by Sen. Dan Skogen (DFL-Hewitt), awaits action by the Senate Finance Committee. It contains only the library grants.

The $108.7 million in requests are given one of three priorities.

Proposals with a high ranking include asset preservation for the state academies for the deaf and blind, the Perpich Center for Arts Education, library accessibility grants and a grant for the Red Lake School District for building construction.

Rep. Mindy Greiling (DFL-Roseville), the division chairwoman, said almost everything that came before the division would be listed as a high priority in some committees.

“We can fight for anything on the list,” Greiling said.

Only $7 million of the recommendations is included in the governor’s bonding proposal for Minnesota State Academies and the Perpich Center for Arts Education.

The state academies are slated for just over $2.7 million in asset preservation, and $3.3 million to renovate Mott Hall on the Minnesota State Academy for the Deaf campus.

Pawlenty recommends $999,000 for projects at the Perpich Center for Arts Education for asset preservation.

None of the $91.6 million recommended for Department of Education projects in the finance division are included in the governor’s proposal.

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