Tax watchdog urges lawmakers to control school spending

(The Center Square) — A New York taxpayer watchdog group is urging state lawmakers to approve Gov. Kathy Hochul’s plan to throttle back school spending through a “hold harmless” provision in how districts are funded, calling the move necessary to restrain the budget’s growth.

The report by the Citizens Budget Commission said state spending on schools has increased tremendously in recent years, and spending restraint is needed to close those gaps, which it said can only be accomplished by limiting growth in school aid. 

“Slowing school aid growth should be done while better targeting aid to districts with high and growing needs; this will focus resources where they are most needed, while also strengthening the state’s bottom line,” the commission wrote in the nine-page report

The commission’s report noted a provision included in Hochul’s preliminary budget that calls for phasing out of the hold harmless
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