By: Madeline Meyer, LSU Manship School News Service
Published: May 9, 2019
BATON ROUGE–The House on Thursday passed a $30 billion operating budget for next year that includes $1,200 teacher pay raises, $600 for support staff and full funding for TOPS scholarships, but not the $39 million for public schools sought by the governor.
In stark contrast to previous budget debates, the full House almost unanimously approved the bill in a 100-1 vote.
The budget now moves to the Senate, which could push to add in the $39 million for the schools that Gov. John Bel. Edwards originally proposed. Edwards, a Democrat up for re-election, proposed pay raises of $1,000 for teachers and $500 for support workers.
Republican House leaders suggested that the state cannot afford both the teacher pay raise and the $39 million increase for public schools.
House Education Committee Chair Nancy Landry, R-Lafayette, commented after the vote that the big issue between the House and the Senate will be whether to fund both the pay raise and the increase for the schools.
“We feel like we can’t do both right now,“ she said. “It’s too much of an ask, 4.5 percent increase for one year for both the increase in the teacher pay and the increase in the across-the-board funding.”
Read more in KALB.