On Monday, Jonna testified on behalf of SJK regarding another voucher scheme. Public dollars exist to support public schools, yet every year there are multiple bills introduced to divert funding.
Here is her testimony:
We strongly oppose Senate Bill 087.
We hold, as a basic principle, that public, taxpayer dollars for public education must stay in public schools; and that our students who choose public schools be funded adequately and equitably, with sustainable funds, which is a goal our state has yet to accomplish.
Therefore, we oppose any changes to public school funding in Colorado or modification to the Colorado state income tax law that would use public, taxpayer dollars for vouchers, tax credits, Education Savings Accounts or any other tool used for privatizing public education.
Last year, we testified in opposition to House Bill 1221, intended to modify the state income tax deduction for 529 account contributions for PRIVATE K-12 education . We believe, like House Bill 1221, Senate Bill 87 is, quite simply, a back door Voucher.
Contributions to a 529 account should remain as intended, for “qualified higher education expenses”.
This is Colorado, the land of TABOR, afterall. Surplus dollars in the General Fund are an anomaly, limited, and, there are always competing priorities for those dollars.
As elected officials, you are the stewards of our taxpayer dollars. It’s your responsibility to protect and fund our public entities and infrastructure such as K-12 public education – first.
We ask that you continue in your support for public K-12 education and vote NO on Senate Bill 87.
Outcome: The bill was PI’d (postponed indefinitely.)