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Posted on Wed, Feb 8, 2012 : 5:28 p.m.

Gov. Rick Snyder expected to propose 3-percent increase to Michigan education funding

By Danielle Arndt

Previous story: Schools, others hope for money in Michigan spending plan

Gov. Rick Snyder is expected to propose a 3-percent increase to education funding during his budget presentation Thursday, according to a report by Lansing news service Gongwer.


Gov. Rick Snyder will deliver his budget proposal for 2013 at 11 a.m. Thursday. file photo

Gongwer said the increase will include funding to both colleges and universities as well as K-12, with K-12 receiving about a 0.8-percent increase.

Rep. Rick Olsen, R-York Township, said he would be surprised if the governor didn’t tie at least some of the money to best practices, as Snyder piloted in 2011. He said although there has been discussion about tying the money to student achievement, he does not believe the administration “feels quite ready to do that yet.”

“I think we’re headed down that road, but I think we’ll just see almost an extension of the best practices from this year,” he said.

Scott Menzel, superintendent of the Washtenaw Intermediate School District, said if incentives for dollars are in Snyder’s plan, he hopes the state’s ISDs will be eligible this time.

Intermediate school districts were not included in the “best practice” initiatives Snyder proposed in 2011.

Menzel called it a shame because ISDs have been sharing services for years and are typically on the forefront of helping their districts share services, too.

Menzel said although Snyder’s current best practices are one-time funding opportunities, he is not opposed to them.

“Most districts have already submitted them or are in the process of submitting them, and so I wouldn’t say the process was too onerous,” he said. “But when we already experienced a $400 cut in the foundation grant and have competing pressures to cut our budgets and share services — it’s a lot.”

Last year, the minimum per-pupil grant was cut from $7,316 to $6,846, but districts could earn back $100 per student by meeting at least four of five stipulations made by the state.

What Menzel would most like would be to see the governor do something to address the retirement rate, he said.

School districts' contribution rates for retiree health care costs will increase from 25 to 27 percent for 2012-2013, according to the Michigan Office of Retirement Services.

“If something isn’t done,” Menzel said, “the increase (to K-12 funding) might be swallowed up in retirement costs.”

Olsen, who is part of a collaborative House and Senate group looking at retirement reform, said there is a push to keep districts’ contribution rates at a net average of 22.5 percent. He said 22.5 percent is what most districts currently are paying after receiving some one-time money from the state.

Districts’ were able to reduce their contribution from 25 to 22.5 percent by putting their one-time money toward this rate, which Olsen said both the House and the administration have stressed one-time money should be used toward legacy costs or unfunded liabilities, not ongoing commitments.

Snyder will present his budget in the House Appropriations Room at 11 a.m. Thursday. It will stream live here on the House website.

Staff reporter Danielle Arndt covers K-12 education for Follow her on Twitter @DanielleArndt or email her at



Thu, Feb 9, 2012 : 11:33 p.m.

Maybe he can also give back the money he took from the retirees of public institutions like U of M and the local school districts? Sounds like taking from Peter to give to Paul. Slick Rick!


Thu, Feb 9, 2012 : 10:20 p.m.

If he is so hated why didnt recall #1 work, I could call nothing but dems and get a 0% approval rating, plus you say dont vote republican, was Granholm a Rep.? No she wasnt and she was inept. I will never understand why people dont realize state and fed budgets are like our own budgets, sometimes we have to make cuts to the things we would like in order to keep our mortgage up to date, or repairs or anyof the other things we should be doing as adults. We have thrown billions of dollars at the schools and our education system is a joke. Unions are choking our economy to a stand still. Bring on recalls 2 through 50, all cry babies do is show why we need an adult running things.


Thu, Feb 9, 2012 : 1:48 p.m.

Wow, Snyder is a Saint. He cuts education by 15% one year, throwing multi-year budgeting into chaos and and now low and behold, a 3% increase this year. How generous. Let's nominate him for the Presidency over the multi-polar Flip-flopping Romney; the $300,000 ethics fine paying Speaker of the House Gingrich who is busy surviving his prior two affairs and divorces, open marriage plans, condo development plans on the moon, and his plans on having the Justices of the Supreme Court arrested and brought to Congress to explain their rulings; or the rabid anti-gay, anti-abortion, pro-earmark, anti-birth control Santorum; or the lying racist, homophobic Ron Paul who denied involvement in his bigoted newsletters and then was caught in his lies when Staffers came forward and said that he was, his signature was on them, and his notes were found on drafts of them. Quite a nice crowd. No, I will stick with the Snyder Recall attempt # 2 starting in May ! His approval rating remains stuck at 19%, below the lowest point of Gov Granholm's.


Fri, Feb 10, 2012 : 1:53 a.m.

More Sparty mythology. The cut was just about 2 percent last year and the increase this year is about 0.8 percent. Both are HUGE numbers, so large they stole all the cash from the schools last year and now leave the schools with so much money they don't know what to do with it.


Thu, Feb 9, 2012 : 9:13 p.m.

Oh, I have no intention of leaving .... future recalls of republicans to sign for, elections coming up, Federal lawsuits to follow on republican violations of the US Constitution, etc. But, don't let my staying keep your trailer from swaying on down the road now. I hear Alabama is looking for people to work in their crops since they chased all their workers away and nobody is willing to do that work.


Thu, Feb 9, 2012 : 2:02 p.m.

Democrats should all listen to Rachel Maddow then at least you could get your story straight! I'll make you a deal Sparty. If your recall works I'll leave the state. If it fails You leave the state!


Thu, Feb 9, 2012 : 1:13 p.m.

Whoopie skoopie!! $100 per child??? Let's see some real changes to education instead of funding it as a business.


Thu, Feb 9, 2012 : 1:29 p.m.

If it were a business it would be out of business. The Democrats want to fund everything on the backs of workers!


Thu, Feb 9, 2012 : 1:10 p.m.

What about ALL of this Lottery money that is SUPPOSED to go to the schools???????

Monica R-W

Thu, Feb 9, 2012 : 7:01 a.m.

Meanwhile, in Detroit Public Schools, non-public school trained- retired General Motors Executive- Roy Roberts closes 16 DPS schools and offers four of them to Charter School Companies.... Vote the BUMS out of Michigan on November 6, 2012. Don't vote for a Republican. None of them. Tell five friends you know and show up at the voting booth with them. Change to Michigan can come as early as January 2013.


Fri, Feb 10, 2012 : 1:51 a.m.

Monica - The graduation rate in Detroit is under 25% according to the state statistics. How would you like to have your children trapped in a district that has a 25 Percent graduation rate? What do those 75% that do not graduate do to make a living and a future? Does Detroit deserve to have 75% of the children not graduate? It is a drag on the whole state budget. The Emergency Manager for the Detroit Public Schools was originally put in place by Governor Granholm who was a DEMOCRAT.


Thu, Feb 9, 2012 : 1:26 p.m.

Monica You have been watching too much Rachel Maddow! Detroit has been run into the ground by Democrats that never want to pay for what they get for YEARS! Maybe some of this money should be spent to educate the uniformed posters here!


Thu, Feb 9, 2012 : 1:17 p.m.

The problem with Detroit Public Schools are the Democrats that control it, no way you can pass this on to Republicans.

average joe

Thu, Feb 9, 2012 : 12:12 p.m.

I didn't know Detroit public schools' problems began just this past year.


Thu, Feb 9, 2012 : 5:25 a.m.

Unfortunately the story points to the heart of the problem. Retirement and retiree health care in our current union contracts in Michigan is rising faster than inflation, revenue or a rocket to the moon. The state owes over $40 BILLION to retirement funds, during the eight years that Governor Granholm was in office, the state did nothing to close this gap. Unfortunately, like social security, this is the third rail - death to anyone who touches it. Add the growing Federal unfunded mandates, and the state is in a deep hole looking up. There are no easy answers. The result, there is very little money in the state budget for things that are not absolutely required by the courts, federal law or the state constitution.


Fri, Feb 10, 2012 : 1:48 a.m.

a2flow - I was not talking about current teachers and health care - but rather retiree health care costs. These retiree health care costs are NOT contained by the AAPS contract. They are a state level issue.


Thu, Feb 9, 2012 : 3:38 p.m.

@a2flow - Health care inflation is a HUGE part of why Michigan's teacher pension expenses are rising so fast. Many/most currently retired teachers were promised excellent and extensive health care coverage for life, and so far the state has not tried to renegotiate that promise. Teachers get a MUCH better deal on health coverage than other state employees, including the Michigan State Police, according to my mother-in-law who is a retired teacher and the widow of a state trooper.


Thu, Feb 9, 2012 : 11:54 a.m.

@DonBee...The only thing I would correct you on is inflation does not matter....the cost of healthcare for teachers is contained...any hikes will be paid for by the teachers over a set amount. Even the typical, public school assassin "The Mackinac Center" mentioned AAPS as ahead of the curve on healthcare. Has been this way for a couple of years I believe.


Thu, Feb 9, 2012 : 3:44 a.m.

I feel better about the state finances today than i did a year ago. The previous administrations idea of just taking stimulus money to fund the schools was not a long term viable option. Changes had to be made and no one wants to change what they have but something had to be done and it seems like the state is headed in the right direction getting their finances in order- and I might ad with bi-partisan support someone in Washington should take note of how the legislature here is actually working together and the citizens are going to be the beneficiaries

Chuck Early

Thu, Feb 9, 2012 : 2:55 a.m.

I propose he takes 100% pay cut.


Thu, Feb 9, 2012 : 1:19 p.m.

Chuck What about school administrators, representatives, senators and heaven forbid YOU!


Thu, Feb 9, 2012 : 4:50 a.m.

You want him to give his dollar back? Because that's all he took - $1.00


Thu, Feb 9, 2012 : 1:38 a.m.

@tdw: well, the usual suspects have begun to make their appearances

Marvin Face

Thu, Feb 9, 2012 : 1:38 a.m.

You heard it here first...Snyder for President in 2016.


Thu, Feb 9, 2012 : 11:35 p.m.

Yes! At least that will get him out of Michigan!


Thu, Feb 9, 2012 : 1:28 p.m.

Anonymous You better buy some insulated underwear!


Thu, Feb 9, 2012 : 1:12 p.m.

When hell freezes over.


Wed, Feb 8, 2012 : 11:49 p.m.

It looks like the entire 0.8% K-12 increase will go to increased retirement costs/obligations. Given the increase in state revenues, can the state increase be a bit higher?


Thu, Feb 9, 2012 : 1:44 a.m.

Not to mention that 3% was taken last a whole .8% increase, wow! There are so many parts of education that need reform, but most will not be addressed. How it currently works is this...Republicans want it both ways, everyone is responsible for their own life, but teachers are the reasons why ALL public schools are horrible. The reality is this...some teachers and administrators need to go but the idea that many teachers just coast is false, there needs to be a change in social progression k-8, parents/children need to be held responsible for their learning and attendance, retirement costs need to be contained, and the governor needs to stop taking from the school fund to support his agenda. At this point, the plan is to give money to for-profit charters, use standardized assessment to measure learning, and continue to assault the public school system through propaganda. I know, I know. If we could just get these greedy teachers to do their job all of this will be magically solved. The same way that if they just paid 20% for health insurance there would be no funding issues in education. Stand in line for your kool-aid, kids.

Marshall Applewhite

Wed, Feb 8, 2012 : 11:21 p.m.

Slick Rick wants to give more money to children!?! I knew this would happen. That money will be going to all those FAT CAT children and their corporate buddies. I'm sure those children will probably use this money to ship some jobs of to China also. This money should be evenly distributed between Unions and the homeless, because those are the people whose votes can actually be purchased. Despicable. Sounds like we need to pay a bunch of Detroit Public Union members to march to his house again.

mike gatti

Thu, Feb 9, 2012 : 12:12 a.m.

Hey Mister can we have our ball back?


Wed, Feb 8, 2012 : 10:56 p.m.

Waiting for the attacks Synder....................


Thu, Feb 9, 2012 : 4:46 a.m.

Mr. Briegel - If tdw was proud of the governor, is that somehow a problem? I don't get it.

David Briegel

Thu, Feb 9, 2012 : 1:17 a.m.

Why don't you just tell everyone how proud you are of him? Stand up!


Wed, Feb 8, 2012 : 10:58 p.m.

Oops......attacks on Synder