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How the Passage of House Bill 873 Would Affect Our Schools and Your Local Property Taxes

Say no to hb 873

It's not always best to multitask but there are so many pressing issues at play that affect our daily lives that we must find a way to effectively address them or prepare ourselves for the ghastly aftermath. The Florida Legislature will deal with HB873 very soon. You should know that passage of the proposed legislation will continue the decimation of public education AND adversely affect disposable income of taxpayers. 

Please pay attention to this message from the Miami-Dade County Council of PTAs/PTSAs. Call, email and tweet the legislators listed below. Ask them to vote NO on HB873. Thank You.

~ Va-Va 

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How the Passage of House Bill 873 Would Affect Our Schools and Your Local Property Taxes
 


FEBRUARY 29, 2016
 
If passed by the Florida Legislature, House Bill 873 (Education Funding), sponsored by Miami-Dade's own Representative Manny Diaz, Jr. and co-sponsored by fellow Dade Delegation member Representative Erik Fresen, will dramatically affect what happens to the property taxes you pay for building, renovating, and maintaining local school district facilities. An amendment to the bill, filed by Representative Fresen and approved by the House Appropriations Committee, requires school districts to share a portion of these local taxes with privately-operated charter schools.
 
Over the past few years, charter schools have consistently received more state funding for capital outlay than traditional public schools. In both 2011-2012 and 2012-2013, for example, charter schools were allocated $55 million in state PECO (Public Education Capital Outlay) funds, while traditional public schools received $0. In 2013-2014, charters were allocated $90.6 million, and traditional public schools $6 million. The totals in 2014-2015 were $75 million for charter schools and $53 million for district schools. This year, both charter schools and traditional public schools have each been allocated $50 million--despite the fact that district schools vastly outnumber charter schools.
 
Most of Florida's traditional public schools are well over 50 years old, and the long drought in state maintenance and construction funds has forced school districts to face a difficult choice: delay addressing basic needs, such as repairing and replacing roofs and air conditioning units, or raise local property taxes to cover necessary expenses.
 
If HB 873 passes, part of our local property tax dollars will be siphoned off to charter schools for the lease, construction, or improvement of privately-owned facilities. Remember that in too many instances where charter schools have closed, the public has been unsuccessful in recovering taxpayer dollars spent on capital improvements: the Associated Press has estimated the cumulative loss at $70 million.
We need to act NOW!
Please email, call, or tweet TODAY!
Ask House Speaker Crisafulli and your local Representative to VOTE NO on HB 873
 
CONTACT INFORMATION FOR SPEAKER CRISAFULLI AND MIAMI-DADE HOUSE MEMBERS:

Speaker Steve Crisafulli
steve.crisafulli@myfloridahouse.gov, 850-717-5000, @SteveCrisafulli

Rep. Joe Geller
joseph.geller@myfloridahouse.gov, 850-717-5100, @JoeGellerFL

Rep. Sharon Pritchett,
sharon.pritchett@myfloridahouse.gov, 850-717-5102, @staterepsharon

Rep. Manny Diaz, Jr.,
manny.diaz@myfloridahouse.gov, 850-717-5103, @RepMannyDiazJr

Rep. Carlos Trujillo,
carlos.trujillo@myfloridahouse.gov, 850-717-5105, @RepCTrujillo

Rep. Barbara Watson,
barbara.watson@myfloridahouse.gov, 850-717-5107, @TeamRepWatson

Rep. Daphne Campbell,
daphne.campbell@myfloridahouse.gov, 850-717-5108, @RepCampbell

Rep. Cynthia Stafford,
Rep. Jose Oliva,
jose.oliva@myfloridahouse.gov, 850-717-5110, @RepJoseOliva

Rep. Bryan Avila,
bryan.avila@myfloridahouse.gov, 850-717-5111, @BryanAvilaFL

Rep. Jose Javier Rodriguez.
jose.rodriguez@myfloridahouse.gov, 850-717-5112, @JoseJavierJJR

Rep. David Richardson,
david.richardson@myfloridahouse.gov, 850-717-5113, @david4florida

Rep. Erik Fresen,
erik.fresen@myfloridahouse.gov, 850-717-5114, @ErikFresenFL

Rep. Michael Bileca,
michael.bileca@myfloridahouse.gov, 850-717-5115, @mbileca

Rep. Jose Felix Diaz,
jose.diaz@myfloridahouse.gov, 850-717-5116, @josefelixdiaz

Rep. Kionne McGhee,
kionne.mcghee@myfloridahouse.gov, 850-717-5117, @kionnemcghee

Rep. Frank Artiles,
frank.artiles@myfloridahouse.gov, 850-717-5118, @Artiles118

Rep. Jeanette Nuñez,
jeanette.nunez@myfloridahouse.gov, 850-717-5119, @RepJNunez

Rep. Holly Raschein,
holly.raschein@myfloridahouse.gov, 850-717-5120, @HollyRaschein

If you're not sure which House member represents you, please enter your address here.

***
Additional late breaking Education Bills update:
 
The Senate Appropriations Committee passed two omnibus education bills on 2/25, after attaching large amendments, sending the two bills to the Senate floor.
 
Senate Education Budget Committee Chair, Senator Don Gaetz, filed a 59-page, strike-all amendment to SB 524, which, while proposing measures to prevent charter school capital funding from flowing into private investors' pockets, also includes controversial issues like the "Best and Brightest" teacher bonus plan. SB 524 was previously a 3-page bill dealing with state university performance funding.
 
Senator Gaetz also filed an 85-page strike-all amendment to SB 1166 (Education Funding), with proposed revisions that include open enrollment for public school students (students can attend any school in the state that has availability) and high school athletics (opening public high school athletics to students who attend charter and some private schools).
 
We know that you are your student's best advocate. 
 
 

Nancy Lawther, VP of Advocacy and Legislation
Mindy Gould, Advocacy Chair
Eileen Segal, Legislation Chair
Miami-Dade County Council of PTAs/PTSAs

 

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