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Gov. Mead: It’s Time to Make Education Funding a Priority

Joy Greenwald, Townsquare Media
Joy Greenwald, Townsquare Media

Governor Matt Mead is urging Wyoming lawmakers to make K-12 funding a priority when they convene in January.

Mead, who released his supplemental budget¬†for the 2017-2018 biennium Wednesday afternoon, says the looming challenge is not the general fund it’s education.

“As I look at the government side/operation side, I think that we are in solid position to get through these rocky times,” said Mead. “But on the education side, I just can’t stress enough that we have a real crisis on our hands.”

“As we look at revenue forecasts, we look at estimates of spending, I would say that it has gotten worse,” Mead added. “Whether it’s $600-$700 million or some have even suggested in six years a $1.5 million shortfall, we have to make some changes.”

Mead says he’s hopeful the Legislature will take the recommendation he provided last year and put together a task force to analyze and make recommendations on long-term school funding strategies.

“I think it has to be a statewide conversation,” said Mead. “We have to have the educators help us in determining the best way to go about this.”

“We are optimistic about mineral prices, we think they’re going to continue to get better, but they won’t get better quickly enough in order to fully address this problem,” added Mead.

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