Friday, September 3, 2010

Perry sends letter to school chiefs

Just when I say there's no new news on the jobs bill front...

Yesterday, Gov. Rick Perry sent a strongly worded letter to school district administrators and he pulled no punches on what he thinks of the Doggett amendment. Still, the letter gives no indication on whether Texas school districts will see any of the $830 million the federal government has set aside if the state can meet certain stipulations.

Perry does say in the letter that he'll apply for the money but that it's "unlikely" Texas will qualify. If the state's application is rejected, Perry says, he'll ask the Obama administration to hold the $830 million aside until the state Legislature convenes in January. Then, he said, lawmakers can consider action while building the 2012-13 budget that would make the required assurances to access the federal money.

Finally, Perry says he'll ask Congress to repeal the Doggett amendment or pass new legislation allowing Texas to get its share of the money.

U.S. Rep. Lloyd Doggett has defended his amendment as a victory for public schools. His intention is to make sure the money goes directly to school districts and isn't used to help balance the state budget.

I'm wondering what his response will be to Perry's letter. I'll bet we don't have to wait long to find out.

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