Gov. Scott urging state lawmakers to reduce education spending with projected 18.5% tax increase
State spending on education is emerging as one the top issues to be addressed during the upcoming Legislative session.
In its annual letter to lawmakers, the Vermont Tax Department estimated it will take an average 18.5% increase in property tax rates to fund current levels of education spending. Some key factors for the bump include higher health care costs and inflation.
Gov. Phil Scott says this increase is "not acceptable," and he is urging lawmakers to figure out ways to reduce spending.
"What do we want to do without?" Scott said. "And maybe those are discussions we have to have. But we have to live within our means, because we're already spending a lot of money."
House Ways and Means Chair Emilie Kornheiser says she looks forward to reviewing Scott's recommendations, and she says it's important to remember that education spending decisions are made at the local level.
"We trust our local school boards to make local decisions about how much money and how many resources they need to support kids and teachers," Kornheiser said.
She says lawmakers might also want to consider other revenue sources to reduce pressure on the property tax.
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