Vermont House Votes To Ease Education Spending Caps

Jan 30, 2016

Credit Pat Bradley/WAMC

In a post-midnight vote Saturday, the Vermont House passed a bill to ease spending caps on local school districts.

Gov. Peter Shumlin on Saturday lauded lawmakers' diligence, saying the vote gives school boards around the state the clarity they need to make budgeting decisions in advance of Town Meeting Day.

The law that was passed last year — Act 46 — imposed tax penalties for school districts that exceeded spending limits designed to provide property tax relief, but the penalties were steeper than many expected.

A compromise fix was passed by the Senate on Thursday. A move to allow the House to consider the proposal Friday failed but lawmakers scrambled to reconsider it.

Act 46 is designed to encourage Vermont's school districts to look at merging with their neighbors for efficiency.

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