Hawley: Governor’s Cuts to School Aid Disproportionately Hurt Upstate

Assemblyman Steve Hawley (R,I,C – Batavia) today announced that he strongly opposes Governor Paterson’s proposed education cuts due to their inequitable nature, which will impact school districts in the Upstate region much harder than those downstate.

“I am not pleased about this disproportionate reduction in funding for the schools in our community and across Upstate New York,” said Hawley. “The future of our state depends on the future success of our children. If upstate schools continue to be taken advantage of, we will continue to see families move and small businesses close up shop.”

Under the Governor’s 2010-2011 Executive Budget, Genesee and Niagara counties each would see a 9% reduction in school aid from the state, while Monroe and Orleans counties would face reductions of 8% and 6%, respectively. On the other hand, New York City will only face a reduction of 6%, a significantly lower percentage than most upstate counties.

“Every year, policies are passed by state leaders that favor New York City and the Downstate region at Upstate’s expense. At a time when budget gaps are growing and our economy is struggling to recover, the Governor should not be looking to favor one region over another. Any reductions to school aid should be made equitably across the state. I will continue to oppose this proposal and fight for the Upstate region’s right to fair education funding,” Hawley concluded.