Friday, April 24, 2009

Herenton Asks Council to Fund Schools

Mayor: "We need to do what is best for children."

Posted By on Fri, Apr 24, 2009 at 4:22 PM

Mayor Willie Herenton wants the Memphis City Council to give Memphis City Schools the amount of funding it asked for last year.

The mayor made the request Friday in a letter delivered to council members asking that they not "play games" with the budget he presented Tuesday.

The text of the letter follows.

"At the risk of appearing to be defensive or offensive, I want to make it very clear that the Administration has developed a sound budget and we are not going to play games over schools funding.

"In my judgment, the council should not have decreased the funding for schools and should not have lowered the tax rate. You ignored my advice and some council members are threatening to undo a balanced FY 2010 operating budget to hedge your mistake.

"My advice to the Council is to reinstate the previous 0.82 tax rate allocated for schools and let's moves [sic] on to other priorities for the city. In the final analysis we need to do what is best for children."

If the council does that and does not make any changes in the rest of the budget then it there would almost certainly be a property tax increase for city residents. The council managed to cut the tax rate last year by cutting some money for schools.

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