The state’s public records laws and legislative tradition may make it very difficult to find out why the bipartisan-supported effort to retool the state’s 25-year-old education funding formula fell apart Tuesday night.
The House and Senate both unanimously passed their own versions of legislation to change the formula earlier in the session. A six-member conference committee was tasked with reconciling the two measures. Just before midnight on Tuesday, as the legislative session was ending, lawmakers said they were unable to reach an agreement.
The measures could have driven hundreds of millions of dollars to schools over several years. Both bills would have increased spending calculations for employee health care and special education students. The Senate version went further, increasing funding required for English-language learners and low-income students.