Sunday, September 11, 2005

Poll Shows Lege/Governor Have Different Agenda Than Texans On School Finance

The poll shows that while the blame is more on the lege and lobby Perry gets his share as well. It also shows most people think there school is OK, it's the other school that bad. Everyone, of course, thinks their property taxes are too high. But look at the numbers on an income tax, it's almost 50/50. 57% even agree with "Robin Hood":
• About a fourth of respondents – 25 percent – blamed lawmakers for the impasse on school finance this year, while another fourth of those polled said lobbyists and special interest groups doomed the effort to fix the state's troubled school finance system. About 14 percent blamed Mr. Perry, and 17 percent said all sides share responsibility.

• Respondents gave the state's public school system bad grades, but when asked to rate their local schools, a majority assigned a grade of either A or B. By contrast, only 28 percent of those polled gave an A or B to the public schools of Texas, and 26 percent said the system deserved no more than a D or F. Another 39 percent gave a C.

• Although there is practically no support in the Legislature for a state income tax, 45 percent of respondents said they would support an income tax if it reduced property taxes and the revenue was used for education. Slightly more – 47 percent – said they opposed the idea.

• The 65 percent who said their property taxes were too high was a significant jump over the beginning of this year, when 54 percent had that complaint. That poll was taken just as the Legislature convened its regular session when school finance and tax reduction plans took center stage.
Check out this editorial, Throw 'em all out, which has some great commentary on the situation:
A couple weeks ago, the Texas Legislature was leaving town after yet another special session without writing a school finance bill. An Austin policeman across the street from the capitol ventured his opinion about the departing legislators.

"I think they ought to throw them all out," the cop said. "They can't pass a school bill, and they can't cut our property taxes." What would he think of a state income tax to fund good schools and lower property taxes?

"Give me an income tax," the cop declared vehemently. "I'm fed up."



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