Democrats Say SC Not Meeting Education Obligation

COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) - South Carolina Democrats say the budget plan being debated on the House floor is $537 million short of meeting a state funding formula for education.

The budget plan for 2014-15 would provide more than $170 million additional to K-12 public education next school year.

But Rep. James Smith says that's still far from where it's supposed to be.

He proposed Tuesday increasing the so-called base student cost to $2,742 per student. That would equal what state law calls for under a 37-year-old formula that's adjusted annually for inflation. The budget proposal provides $622 less per student through that funding source.

Smith recognized his proposal was doomed. Even he disagreed with where his amendment took the money. But he said he wanted discussion on the state not meeting its obligations.

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