Committed to creating a fairer and more equitable manner for funding Illinois schools, State Representative Steve Reick (R-Woodstock) has signed on as a Chief Co-Sponsor of legislation that would make sweeping changes to how school districts receive state aid.
HB 4069 is compromise legislation that includes recommendations brought forward from the Governor’s bipartisan, bicameral Illinois School Funding Reform Commission and priorities of lawmakers from both sides of the aisle. Unlike the current method for funding schools, HB 4069 applies an evidence-based model that would ensure that every child has access to a high quality education. Most importantly, according to Reick, the bill does not provide special treatment or giveaways to Chicago Public Schools (CPS). What it does include, according to the lawmaker, is true compromise in areas like hold harmless, unfunded mandate relief, the Chicago Block Grant and CPS pensions.
“Discussions for how to change the school funding formula have been ongoing for years, and I believe we are moving toward consensus on a new formula that helps all Illinois school districts rather than sending a disproportionate share of taxpayer dollars to CPS,” said Reick. “The funding reform bill that was approved in the Senate this year, SB 1, included many good provisions, but it also included a poison pill in the form of a massive financial bailout for Chicago schools. That’s money that should be channeled equitably for the betterment of all students. HB 4069 eliminates the special CPS giveaways and relies on data alone to drive resources to the schools that need it most.”
Specifically, school districts in the 63rd Legislative House District would receive $2.7 million more under HB 4069 than through SB 1. “Every suburban and downstate school district receives more funding through HB 4069,” Reick said. “The bill is realistic, fair and it represents the best and most reasonable outcome for Illinois school children. It is great compromise legislation that we can pass right now and get signed into law before the start of the upcoming school year.”