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Factoring Inflation Into State Budget Projections

Sergey Kuzmin
123rf Stock Photo

A new report said Kentucky’s per-pupil education funding has actually decreased over an eight-year period when inflation is taken into account. An analysis by the Council for Better Education shows inflation-adjusted state funding decreased by nearly 500-dollars per-pupil from 2008 to 2016.

Governor Bevin’s proposed two-year budget keeps per-pupil spending at its current level.

Ashley Spalding is a senior policy analyst with the liberal-leaning Kentucky Center for Economic Policy. She said the declining state commitment to public education funding impacts some school districts more than others.

“The less that the state puts in, that impacts the poorer districts even more. Even with the same property tax increase they are not able to make up the difference,” said Spalding.

Spalding said local districts are having to raise taxes in order to make up for the inflation-adjusted decline in state funding for schools. However, she points out poorer school districts can levy the same property tax and not generate as much revenue as districts in wealthier areas.

Becca Schimmel is a Becca Schimmel is a multimedia journalist with the Ohio Valley ReSource a collaborative of public radio stations in Kentucky, West Virginia and Ohio. She's based out of the WKU Public Radio newsroom in Bowling Green.
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