Democrats in the legislature concede the plan to boost teacher pay may be delayed because of the dire state budget situation. This past spring, lawmakers approved the a plan to gradually commit more state dollars to raising teacher pay, while raising the performance standards for teachers, too. House Democrat Leader Dick Myers of Iowa City says its one of the most important pieces of legislation they ever passed, but he says it “has a lot of hoops” and he says if the money isn’t available, they should delay its implementation.Senate Democrat Leader Mike Gronstal of Council Bluffs hopes the teacher pay plan is expanded this coming year, but admits it’ll be difficult to do in a tight budget year. The democrat legislative leaders say their party is ready to focus on “economic security issues”. Myers says democrats like the venture capital promotion ideas the G-O-P has developed, and hope to add more incentives for small businesses. He says it’s easy to expand programs when you have a lot of money, he says right now they need to do a better job of watching what they spend.Gronstal says proposals, such as more state-backed training for high-tech jobs, are on their “economic security” agenda. Democrats in the House and Senate met with the Governor on Saturday to discuss their party’s legislative priorities.
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