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Today's Lead: Lawmakers Propose Full Funding For Pre-K

by Mike Muller, Mar 14, 2014


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The state senate passed a budget resolution yesterday providing $540 million a year over five years for funding of full-day pre-K and after school programs in the city. They would pay for it by removing Gov. Andrew Cuomo's corporate tax cut from the budget. The amount meets the new standards Mayor Bill de Blasio requested last week. The Assembly passed their own budget resolution authorizing the mayor's wealth tax to pay for pre-K. But Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver said he was fine with a plan that fully funded pre-K without a tax, as long as there are no strings attached. The senate's resolution did include a catch for the mayor, as it would rescind his charter school co-location decisions and impose new mandates on how the city deals with the schools. Silver made it clear he doesn't support the charter rules. The chambers will have to negotiate the final budget with the governor, who was quick to change the subject from pre-K to charter schools, saying that discussion "is going to be powerful and is probably going to be one of the more controversial and complex matters that we wind up dealing with in the budget."

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