Sullivan County Superior Court Judge Brian Tucker struck down the state’s law capping education funding to cities and towns in what has commonly become known as the Dover Law Suit. While the court found the state’s adequate education funding formula caps unconstitutional, it rejected Dover’s demand for grant payments for years pre-dating the suit. In response to the ruling, Senate President Chuck Morse, Republican from Salem, and House Speaker Shawn Jasper, Republican from Hudson, issued a joint statement condemning not so much the ruling, as the failure of Attorney General Joseph Foster, who, despite co-sponsoring the law as a state senator, refused to challenge Dover’s claims of unconstitutionality.
Morse said current legislation eliminates the caps imposed in 2 0 0 8 in 2 0 1 8 and alleviates the impact of the cap on local communities this year by directing the Department of Education to disburse its unspent funds to them. Of the situation, Morse said, quote
We continue…to be disappointed by the Attorney General and Governor who did not defend the state’s position on this issue, especially considering they both supported establishing the education funding cap in the first place.
Jasper added quote,
The reason we intervened in the Dover Lawsuit in the first place was to make sure that the legislature’s position was represented in the court. The legislature has worked to restore full education funding to all towns, and today’s decision reinforces our actions to remove the cap entirely in fiscal year ’18.
The legislature petitioned the court to represent itself in the suit after Foster announced he would not argue the constitutionality of the law. The court rejected the legislature’s request.
Also in response to the ruling, gubernatorial candidate Manchester Mayor Ted Gatsas told Girard at Large in an interview yesterday that the court’s ruling made clear the need for a constitutional amendment that would remove the courts from determining how education was funded in the state. We’ve linked to the interview.
Gatsas also released a statement saying as mayor of the state’s largest city, he understood the budgetary difficulties caused by the uncertainty in education funding that comes at budget time every two years and that he sympathized with the city of Dover and municipalities across the state about the continued cost down-shifting that comes from Concord.
News from our own backyard continues after this
The Manchester Police Department is asking for the public’s help in locating twenty year old Thomas Ford, Jr. of Hooksett. His last known address is ten Grandview Drive. Ford is wanted for an armed robbery at Han’s Food Mart at the corner of Maple Street and Lake Ave. yesterday after noon. He is also wanted for assaulting eighty one year old Young Hun Yun, the store’s longtime owner, who was bloodied and somewhat disoriented by the attack when police found him upon arrival. Ford is five foot ten with a thin build, about one hundred forty five pounds with black hair and hazel eyes. He was wearing a gray hooded zip up sweatshirt and black pants.
UPDATE: After we went off the air this morning, the Hooksett Police Department announced it had arrested Ford.
The projected 2 0 1 6 school year tax rates are out for the Timberlane Regional School District and taxpayers are bound to be unhappy, especially in Sandown where the rate is projected to jump by more than ten percent to support the fiscal 2 0 1 7 budget. Taxpayers in Atkinson take the next biggest hit with a six and three quarters percent increase. Danville taxpayers will see an increase of more than five percent with Plaistow taxpayers staring at a more than four percent increase. We’ve linked to all the details.
In a blog post about the projections, Timberlane Regional School Board Member Donna Green of Sandown noted that the school board voted to use half a million in surplus from the year that just ended to buy down the whopping tax increases. She also pointed out that year ended with a surplus of nearly three point four million dollars writing, quote:
Timberlane operated in 2015/16 at a total cost of $65,039,839, compared to a budget of $68,616,667. You may recall that in the winter of 2014/15, we proposed our Responsible Budget of $65,000,000 (which would have gone up by $98,000 due to the support workers contract warrant article) so, the district actually operated at a lower cost than we proposed. And none of the scare stories came true – remember threats about draconian cuts, and fees for athletics and busing?
Just goes to show that one who cries wolf just might be shown to be a fraud by people who actually know what they’re doing.
The Goffstown Republican Committee will hold its annual B B Q on Sunday, September 11th, from 2 to 5 pm at Lemay’s. They’ve lined up great speakers for the event, including:
- gubernatorial candidates Frank Edelblut, Ted Gatsas and Chris Sununu,
- Executive Council candidate Jim Adams,
- U S Senate candidate Jim Rubens,
- U S House Candidates Rich Ashooh and Congressman Frank Guinta,
- District 20 state senate candidate Carla Gericke, and
- County Commissioner candidates Len Mannino and Robert Rowe.
Lemay’s will be providing their tasty BBQ with plenty of sides. A pint of award-winning Able Ebeneezer beer is included in the adult ticket price. This is a family friendly event, and there will be activities for children, including whacking a Hillary pinata, while their parents do some grilling of the politicians. Details and tickets are available at goffstown g o p dot org.
That’s news from our own backyard, Girard at Large hour ___ is next!