Members of the Republican legislative leadership say reducing education spending is a priority this session.
During a news conference, House Majority Leader Albert Sommers said he favors a committee bill that would reduce K-12 spending by $100 million while also imposing a tax to pay for future education spending.
He said the state can't keep using reserve funds to pay for education. Funding for education has dried up due to the downturn in energy. Senate Majority Leader Ogden Driskill added that they can't wait to find a solution any longer.
"We will deal with education either by ourselves or via the courts in the next six years. If you look at the trend lines, it's absolutely not sustainable to do the status quo," said Driskill.
He added that the current funding model is not workable long term and they will eventually have to do more with less. The model was developed in the 1990s following a lawsuit over school funding equity. Sommers said only time will tell if the issue ends up in court again.