A legislative committee is recommending that the 2015 Iowa legislature consider changes that would help schools deal with transportation costs, a particular problem in rural Iowa where many districts have long bus routes for students. A group of legislators met for four hours on Monday to discuss the details of how state aid to public schools is distributed and agreed lawmakers should find some way to address the budget difficulties in property-poor school districts, although the group did not make a specific recommendation.
Representative Ron Jorgensen, a Republican from Sioux City, is chairman of the House Education Committee.
“We all know the importance education plays in providing individuals and society with a higher standard of living,” Jorgenson says. “Having an education population will help increase wages and spur economic development.”
Senator Herman Quirmbach, a Democrat from Ames, is chairman of the Education Committee in the Iowa Senate.
“If our students in Iowa don’t get education that makes them competitive economically and in other ways with students raised in other states, then we are not being equitable to our own students,” Quirmbach says.
Quirmbach and Joregensen served on the legislative panel that met Monday to discuss preschool-through-12th grade education funding issues.