TUCKER, Ga. — More than 30 laws should be scrapped, and local school boards should collect some fines from people illegally passing stopped school buses, according to recommendations made Wednesday by the State Education Finance Study Commission.
The commission still hasn’t gotten to the heart of its assignment to propose a new way to fund public schools. Most observers predict a revision to the formula the state has used since the 1980s will be highly controversial because it will require a large tax increase unless funding is cut for wealthy suburban districts that typically elect Republicans like those controlling the government.
Senate Appropriations Chairman Jack Hill, who presides over the commissions subcommittee on funding, said Wednesday that no interim recommendations were forthcoming any time soon.
“We have another year, and there’s no money,” said Hill, R-Reidsville.
What the commission did do at its meeting was approve ideas from two other subcommittees. One called for repeal of 33 outdated laws dealing with obsolete technology or initiatives that have never been funded.
The other subcommittee submitting proposals looked at pupil transportation. It called for $150 million in more funding to account for a third of the buses used in the state’s districts that aren’t included in the current funding scheme.
It also called for allowing local districts to collect part of the traffic fines levied against motorists who don’t stop for boarding school buses. That money would cover the costs of installing cameras on the buses to capture the tags of violators.
One estimate quoted by the subcommittee suggests more than 4,000 violations occur each school day across Georgia.