INDIANAPOLIS (AP) -
Indiana’s governor has signed off on a plan for spending $291 million in
unexpected state tax revenue on college campus construction projects after
legislative Republicans rebuffed Democratic attempts to direct at least some
of that money toward school funding.
Eric Holcomb’s office said he signed the bill Wednesday. Holcomb had first
proposed in July the plan for using the extra money toward paying cash for
several building projects that were part of the two-year state budget
adopted in April, rather than borrowing money.
Holcomb said in a
statement that the plan ensures the state remains “remains the fiscal envy
of the nation by saving Hoosier taxpayers more than $135 million in
dominate the Legislature have repeatedly defended the 2.5% per-year increase
in school funding included in the current state budget. They say it provides
significant progress toward boosting teacher pay and protects the state’s
$2.3 billion in cash reserves.
unanimously rejected a variety of Democratic proposals to increase school
funding as the bill was passed in the first three weeks of the 10-week
legislative session - and after several thousand teachers joined a
boisterous Statehouse rally in November citing stagnant salaries as a top
projects included in the spending plan include $73 million toward a new
veterinary hospital at Purdue University and various building plans at
Indiana University, Ball State University, Indiana State University, the
University of Southern Indiana and Ivy Tech State College in Columbus.