Gov. Rauner signs IL education funding bill

Gov. Rauner signs IL education funding bill

ILLINOIS (KFVS) - Illinois Governor Bruce Rauner signed the education funding bill on Thursday, August 31.

Gov. Rauner signed the bill at 2:30 p.m. at Ebinger Elementary School in Chicago surrounded by school children and legislative leaders.

"The passing of this historic legislation was no easy feat, but it's a reminder of the good things we can accomplish when we put politics aside and focus on what's important: our children and our future," Gov. Rauner said. "I am proud to sign this bill, which will bring more money to school districts based on the needs of the children, guaranteeing that all Illinois students have access to adequate education funding."

Before signing the bill, Rauner stopped at Bloomington High School to talk to students about the importance of a great education.

"We are very pleased that our state legislators were able to reach a compromise that provides an evidence-based funding model for all public schools in the state of Illinois," Bloomington High School Principal Tim Moore said. "This is important, as the model will provide for adequacy and equity for all schools while immediately targeting those that need it most."

Under the new funding formula, the state will distribute funding to each district based on the needs of the children in the district. The majority of education funds will go to those districts that have the largest gap between their adequacy targets and available local resources.

For taxpayers, homeowners who live in school districts that exceed their adequacy targets will be able to look for property tax relief through a referendum.

Several lawmakers issued statements following the bill being signed into law:

"Today is a victory for our schools, our students and our communities. It's also a victory for compromise that I hope we continue to build on. By working together and in good faith, even when we do not totally agree, Democrats and Republicans have created a plan where every school district wins.
The Illinois State Board of Education is proud to have supported the historic work of the General Assembly and the Governor's funding reform commission. Our Board Chairman, James Meeks, deserves special recognition for his years of relentless leadership and advocacy that set the foundation for this new agreement. I would like to thank my staff for working through the multiple proposed models to produce the numbers that made approving a more equitable funding formula possible.

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