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Appropriations Committee agrees to a modest increase for school districts dealing with inflation

Joint Appropriations Committee meeting in Cheyenne
Bob Beck
Wyoming Public Media
Joint Appropriations Committee meeting in Cheyenne

The Wyoming Legislature's Joint Appropriations Committee recommended giving school districts some extra money to help deal with increased costs for supplies and gas prices.

The external cost adjustment would give school districts an extra $10 million for the coming fiscal year but is far less than the $72 million proposal supported by the Joint Education Committee (JAC).

The JAC was particularly concerned about adding more money into the school funding model for salaries. Converse County District Two Superintendent Coley Shadrick said it just wasn't teacher salaries he was concerned about. He's also concerned about having enough money for paraprofessionals and bus drivers.

"I can't compete with what the private sector can pay. I'm paying them $13 an hour as a para and they're going to work in a secretarial capacity at 21 bucks an hour and I can't compete with that. The ECA allows me to come close, to at least stay in the game and in the fight," said Shadrick.

The committee recommendation will go to the governor for possible inclusion into the education budget. If approved, the money can be used by districts in any way they see fit.

Bob Beck retired from Wyoming Public Media after serving as News Director of Wyoming Public Radio for 34 years. During his time as News Director WPR has won over 100 national, regional and state news awards.
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