NH Senate Republican Caucus - Legislators concerned by Dover education adequacy suit

Lifting education adequacy cap stalled by budget veto.

Budget veto stalls funding increases to growing communities

Concord, NH – Following the city of Dover filing a lawsuit seeking increased payments for state education adequacy funding with the Strafford County Superior court this week, Senate Finance Chair Jeanie Forrester (R-Meredith) and Senate Education Committee Vice-Chair Nancy Stiles (R-Hampton) issued the following statements.

“The budget that was passed by the legislature focused, in part, on returning additional funding to cities and towns across the state, including measures to lift the education adequacy cap completely over the next two years,” said Senate Finance Chair Jeanie Forrester (R-Meredith).

“We heard from school districts impacted by the cap that are substantially underfunded with the current formula throughout the process of developing the budget.  But, unfortunately, because Governor Hassan vetoed the legislative budget, school districts whose populations have seen a dramatic increase, like Dover, will not receive increased adequacy funding beyond the existing formula for the next school year,” Forrester added. “This level of uncertainty for schools is another stark consequence of a vetoed budget that cities and towns are dealing with.”

 “I've worked to continually improve education funding for many years and I've heard from many school districts that the funding formula does not meet the needs to provide a satisfactory education for our children in growing or changing communities across the state,” said Senate Education Committee Vice-Chair Nancy Stiles (R-Hampton)

“The budget that passed both the House and Senate this spring took steps to remove the education adequacy funding cap, by lifting it to 160% in 2017 and completely removing it by 2018 so school districts can begin receiving full adequacy payments due per student. I remain concerned that because of the vetoed budget, which included removing the adequacy cap, these critical fixes to education funding will be delayed even longer,” Stiles added.