Press Release: Americans For Prosperity SD supporting HB 1273

In a press release issued this morning, the "Americans for Prosperity" group noted that it's going to be supporting Hal Wick's bill HB 1273 up for a vote in House Ed.

In a nutshell, the measure mandates that $.65 of every dollar be spent in the classroom:
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE – February 12, 2006
Contact: Craig Dewey (605) 261-3842

Americans for Prosperity Supports Legislation to Help Solve Education Funding Problem
HB1273 would direct an additional $59 million for students and teachers without raising taxes

SIOUX FALLS – Last Friday the House Education Committee of the South Dakota Legislature held hearings regarding HB 1273 which would increase funding for in the classroom expenditures in South Dakota schools that will directly impact students and teachers. Action will be taken tomorrow in committee. Americans for Prosperity (AFP) is pleased to help lead discussion on issue.

“During the Taxpayer Trust Tour AFP traveled the state to get taxpayer input into the legislative process. The groundwork for HB 1273 was suggested by taxpayers,” said State Director of Americans for Prosperity Duane Sand. “AFP is pleased to help advance the discussion of critical importance to taxpayers during the legislative session with grassroots support. HB 1273 is a companion bill to any education funding bills that are passed.”

Currently school districts in South Dakota spend an average of 58.6 cents on classroom instruction expenditures. HB 1273 would require that 65 cents of education expenditures be allocated for classroom instructional expenses such as teacher salaries, students, books, and general supplies. The bill would inject an additional $59 million dollars into the classroom without raising taxes or force counties to op-out of local property taxes limits to fund education.”

Americans for Prosperity South Dakota Director Duane Sand indicated “this bill is a compromise between the current lawsuit pending against the state for $110 million additional dollars and doing nothing to solve the education funding issue. Schools should use the same best practices model that has made American businesses the most competitive in the world.”

During the committee hearing last Friday primary sponsor Rep. Hal Wick District 12 offered amendments to include libraries and librarians and allow an additional year for implementation.

Sand also said, “the intent of the bill is to find efficiencies in school district operations and direct that savings into the classroom. HB 1273 is an issue that unites teachers, students, parents, and taxpayers. This bill maintains local control over school districts, but demands statewide accountability. HB 1273 will help improve students’ education while simultaneously protecting taxpayers.”

Action will be taken on HB 1273 on Tuesday morning during the next meeting of the House Education Committee.
You can visit the South Dakota AFP Chapter website here.


Anonymous said…
From what I've heard about this bill it sounds like a good thing.

Minnesota's classroom funding is at 65% and many people in SOuth Dakota hold MN's system as a model.

I hope the House Education Committee gives this serious thought and passes the bill.
Anonymous said…
It's about time!

My wife is a teacher and she spends out of pocket to provide supplies in the classroom.

When was the last time an admiinistrator spent out of his own pocket for school supplies?

Last week some administrator was on KELO crying because he didn't have enough money for extra teachers and then in the next sentence he said that they would maintain a full football and basketball team and not cut out any long trips.

WTF? cut the miles on the school bus and the extra gas so you can fulfill your primary mission of teaching kids!
Anonymous said…
Americans for Prosperity is supporting a good bill. This will help teachers and do so without raising taxes. This is a step in the right direction.
Anonymous said…
I hope this bill passes. Although, it does sound too good to be true. Our states educators are long overdue for fair pay raises. The big question is, will our administrators give the teachers saleries more of a priority? They sure have not in Rapid City. All they seem to get done is horde the sulpus, give the administration a market value raise and give the teachers what's left, which isn't much. Since 1995 teachers saleries have done nothing but erode. It is about time that this issue is focused on. Local control is good for all aspects of education except for the matter of teachers saleries. It becomes a real scapegoat for local school boards and state law makers. This state will be in for a rude awakeing when all of the passive baby boomer teachers start retiring.
Anonymous said…
At first look this does seem like a good idea. Probably the biggest knock against it is that these AFP guys are for it. I know PP is a big fan of these guys, but they sure sound like crackpots most of the time. I got some interesting literature in the mail from them asking for money. Lots of money. Not that there is anything wrong with that. But they came off as crackpots, and everytime I hear them associated with something it's in an eleven-fingered one-bugeyed-whacko way.
nonnie said…
I agree that this is a good bill.

Isn't it sad when maintaining a full sports schedule and the attendant expensive trips trumps academics? And now they have added more sports so more expense there.

And in our district they want a new gym, which they are calling an events center in an effort to make it more appealing, but it is a school gym. And that on top of a recent opt out and a brand new elemetary school which ties up capital outlay funds for the foreseeable future.
Anonymous said…

what's cracked pot about AFP?

standing for lower taxes...
a more efficient school system...
taxpayer funded lobbying...
standing up against crazy amendment D...

sounds to me like your a rino another jealous republican who doesn't like grassroots orgs.
Anonymous said…
AFP positions are all reasonable. They advocate for low, broad-based taxes, restrained spending, and limited government.

There is nothing outrageous about that.

HB 1273 is a reasonable approach to education funding. The bill will directly benefit students and teachers. They are what are education system are all about, educating our kids.
Will said…
This bill erodes local control of school districts. If the school board approves a budget that spends $0.50 in the classroom versus $0.65 that is their decision. It is the voters that elect school board members who in turn approve budgets, if the voters do not feel like the district is spending enough in the classroom, then they need to voice their opinion with their votes.
Anonymous said…

Table 5

SD is 35th in spending per child.
51st in teacher pay.

If more money is being spent on education then why aren't teacher salaries going up?

Of course HB 1273 allows for local control of school districts. Local administrators and school boards will still have the authority to control which efficiencies to find so more money can go in the classroom.
Anonymous said…

the old saw of local control is just too much for me tonight.

Under your logic you should also be required to fund your localy controlled school with locally earned taxpayer dollars.

That means if you don't like what the state wants to give you: opt out!

Also under your logic: what if a school only wanted to spend 30 cents of every dollar on education and the rest on administration...would that be ok? Under your logic it would.

Apparently, the state is spending more on education and our schools yet it is not trickling down to the classroom, as evidenced by the stats from the NEA.

At least this group has the balls to stand up to the education establishment in this state.
Anonymous said…
What does the executive branch have to say about this bill? Not a pointed question, just wondering. Anyone?

I think this would help solve some of Rounds' problems. However, he continuously advocates local control, which this takes away. I'll be interested to see what happens.

Anything that stops forcing schools to allocate to and use their capital outlay funds would be another start. I hope this bill takes some of that money and puts it in the existing classrooms.
Anonymous said…
Schools are going to tell you tht sports makes the money. It is the FFA, FCCLA, Debate, Golf etc that cost schools money.
As for sports the feds took care of that with emmm was it title 9 or what we lay say one sport for each sex. Sports have such high value on them for college monies "scholarships" that parents push and push and fight and fight. Setting up bad examples for our youth. Sports seem to over take the main reason we send kids to school.
SD does not have the tax base to keep maintaining all the schools and all the fed guidelines and state guidelines. If a school has even 1 child tht meets certain medical needs then a school must provide a school nurse. Schols serve breakfast, lunch an before long you wait supper will be coming along. Schools are for education not babysitting.
Let's face it there will never be enough money for schools there is always something else and now they want to put 3 and 4 year olds in school?????
Okay i will tie the fingers ups now and stop ranting....
please forgive many typos..just a brain storm post.
milt said…
There are a lot of unanswered questions in this "news release." That afp endorses it is certainly a drag on the bills worth. It sounds like a big tax INCREASE, just less than the law suite, hence "a savings for taxpayers." I'll have to read it.

These afp boys are anything but grassroots. They're a shell organization out of Washington D.C. funded with federal tax dollars. They're using the same model the environmental groups use - Get congress to give them money, use it to open "state chapters, hire a couple of local political whores...oh, I mean lobbyists and claim to be "grassroots."

They do have an agenda and it isn't looking out for you or me. Don't take my word for it, check them out for yourself at You can find the goods on them there.
Anonymous said…
As I recall (I could be wrong)Ellie Schweiso used this same position in her campaign for senate. I also recall that she received much criticism for supporting this (65% to class room). The support in here now on this issue surprises me.
Anonymous said…
We are embacing a principle without facts,,,,

What is the average spent "in the classroom" in South Dakota today ?

Who is higher?, Lower? Who will be affected and why?

what are the acceptable reasons for being less than 65% "in the classroom"

Here we go again "one size fits all"

Lets print a list of the current schools that are in "violation" of this "new benchmark"

I'm just playing devil's advocate, this might be a good thing, but, I havent heard enough.

Do all of you folks have the above info?, share it please.
Anonymous said…
The SD avergage is 59.5 cents.

I don't know about individual schrools because they either don't have or won't release that data.

I called SF district yesterday and they thought I was asking for an alien baby when I asked them.

They said they would call me back. Probably after this bill debate goes away. Then they don't have to answer any questions about it.
Anonymous said…
AFP takes no tax dollars. Only contributions.

More misinformation from either the left NEA types, which in that case it would the pot calling the kettle black.

OR; some squishy jealous Republicans in this state who can't stand a grassroots organization coming in and advocating for sensible fiscal discipline at the state level.
Anonymous said…
Who is working for AFP in SD?
nonnie said…
11:28. Good post. Our school district has an opt out, will need another opt out in about three years, just built a new elementary school which of course went over cost.

And now they claim we need a new gym to the tune of $6, calling it an events center to make it go down better with the people who have to pay for it. Just shows the value put on sports. School board passed it last night and now it goes to the voters. Their spin on it is that they aren't deciding the school needs it, the people will. Give me a break, if they didn't approve it, we wouldn't need the vote.

As long as the entire school board and most of the people pushing this thing live in town and pay little taxes compared to farmers, they could care less how much it costs land owners. One of the board members I called about this had no idea it would cost farmers that much money. One board member seemed upset that I bothered him, and one was condescending that I would have the nerve to question the merits of this. Lovely.
nonnie said…
correction above. $6 should have been $6,000,000!
Anonymous said…
anon 7:42 am

Thanks for the info.

So we are talking about a 10% shift of current spending, to the class room, as a State average, ie 60% to 65%

What is the expected effect in this shift of funding? what will be improved ?
Anonymous said…
The state average for in the classroom spending is 58.6 cents out of every dollar.

This bill would require that 54 cents on the dollar be spend on in the classroom expenditures (i.e. students, teacher salaries, supplies)

Each school district would decide what the money would be spent on.

The end result is that more money will be going to directly benefit students and help increase teacher salaries.
Anonymous said…
Oops I meant 65 cents on the dollar would be required for in the classroom expenditures

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