Sen. Tim Knopp
Students Denied Increased Funding By Democrats on Party Line Vote
Salem, OR – Senator Tim Knopp voted to increase the K-12 budgets totaling $7 billion dollars. In an effort to help the struggling school districts throughout Oregon Sen. Knopp was joined with his fellow Senate Republicans. However, Senate Democrats were OK with a status quo budget of $6.55 billion that ensures a shortened school year and larger class sizes for many districts around the state.
“Colleagues I have been visiting with both of my school districts, Bend-La Pine and Redmond.” Knopp continues “I will sound like a broken record, we have class sizes, I have seen class sizes of more than 50 kids, and I have seen elementary class sizes of more than 35 pushing 40. This budget, at $6.55 billion, is kind of a status quo for both of my school districts. Even with more money overall than last years’ budget we are left with status quo or worse for our students. We demand better.”
The increase in the K-12 budget totaling $7 billion would come from Senate Bill 854, which included Public Employee Retirement System (PERS) savings. If passed, it would have helped struggling school districts keep more school days on the calendar and more teachers in the class room. However, Democrats blocked this vote on a party line vote and left with a budget that is inadequate.