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ERIC Number: ED371442
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1994-Mar
Pages: 15
Abstractor: N/A
Reference Count: N/A
Arkansas' Slide from Equity.
Schoppmeyer, Martin W.
Instead of adopting an entirely new school finance system to replace an inequitable system threatened by lawsuits, the Arkansas legislature has chosen to repair Act 34 of 1983. Two major changes enacted in 1993 (recalculation of state aid for districts experiencing growth and a change in a district's real property charges when calculating state aid) seem doomed to failure. The major reason why Act 34 does not equalize may be its use of artificial numbers to calculate local wealth. Rather than abandon these fictional figures, the legislature seems determined to juggle them. Because the millage charge on real property adopted in 1983 was much too low, the cap was eventually raised to match the state average millage figure. Even so, the difference between the current charge and the average millage is some 4.84 mills, requiring an increase of $152.5 million to equalize them. Also, outdated numbers for personal and utility property have been used to calculate current wealth. A short-range effort to stop penalizing districts for growth produced a confusing funding formula that penalizes stable or declining districts. These and other factors add up to increasing inequity for students and taxpayers. It is hoped that the new finance commission will design a better system. (MLH)
Publication Type: Reports - Evaluative; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Arkansas