More than one-hundred small, rural school districts across Iowa are suing thestate over a local option sales tax law. They claim only larger, metropolitanschool districts benefit from the current plan and want a statewide salestax that’d be split among all schools. Des Moines attorney Steve Wandro isrepresenting the 110 districts. Wandro says while it’s unfortunate taxdollars will have to be used to sue the state, which will have to defenditself with tax dollars, he says that just shows the extent to which therural schools must go for equality. Wandro says many kids and schooldistricts are being left behind because they don’t have the money to affordthe types of buildings, computers and other resources which all schools inIowa should have. Wandro says the goal is to persuade Iowa legislators torewrite the law and create a one-cent sales tax statewide, with proceedsgoing to all schools. Wandro was on the legal team which helped Iowa win itstwo-BILLION dollar settlement against the tobacco industry. Key lawmakers from both political parties doubt the Iowa Legislature will rewrite the local option sales tax law. Senate Republican Leader StewartIverson of Dows says local school district residents are responsible for their local school buildings. Iverson says the schools cannot claim the state is being unfair in its distribution of state aid. But House Democrat Leader Dick Myers of Iowa City says the schools have a case. Myers saysRepublicans control the debate agenda in the Legislature, and it’s up to them to offer some options to solve the issue.
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