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House Approves Charter School Bill

Following two days and more than five hours of discussion, the House has passed a bill reforming the state’s charter school system.  After 53 of 63 amendments to the bill were thrown out during a marathon session Monday night, House Democrats began Tuesday’s third reading of the legislation by attempting to send it back to the Ways and Means Committee for a second look at its fiscal impact.  Bill author and House Speaker Brian Bosma dismissed the move as little more than a way for Democrats to slow the legislation’s progress…

“It’s just another, I believe, another opportunity for the bill to be waylaid,” said Bosma.

But South Bend Representative Pat Bauer says the bill will lead to school districts maxing out their property tax levies to recoup money they lose to charters.  The South Bend Democrat says that means it warrants consideration by Ways and Means…

“Why are we dissing the fiscal body of this House of Representatives?  This bill could be devastating to this state.  And secondly, this bill is a tax increase.  This bill is a tax increase.  It’s a property tax increase,” Bauer said. 

Bosma says he’s talked with Ways and Means Chairman Jeff Espich, and made him aware of the fiscal impact of the bill.

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