Senators craft Louisiana budget with more education money
BATON ROUGE (AP) - Louisiana state senators have crafted a $30 billion operating budget that boosts college spending, gives school teachers a pay raise and provides new dollars for early childhood education.
The Senate Finance Committee rewrote the House spending proposal late Monday night, to more closely match the wishes of Gov. John Bel Edwards, particularly on public school financing.
Senators are backing a $140 million increase for K-12 schools, with $1,000 pay raises for teachers, $500 salary hikes for support workers and $39 million in block grant increases for school districts. The House proposed larger raises, but no block grant money.
The proposal for the financial year that begins July 1 contains increases for health programs, foster care services and the TOPS college tuition program. It advances to the full Senate for debate.