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Final Act 20 2007-09 Budget Bill Summary

2007-09 Biennial Budget Provisions
Related to Elementary and Secondary Education


Prepared by Policy and Budget Team
Department of Public Instruction
October 2007


  • Using the definition of two-thirds funding as it existed prior to its repeal, the Legislative Fiscal Bureau is estimating that the budget will provide 65.1% state support in 2007-08 and 65.6% in 2008-09. These are decreases from the estimated 66.2% in 2006-07.
  • Total general and categorical aids increase by 0.9% in 2007-08 and 2.3% in 2008-09. If the school levy tax credit and residential schools are included, funding increases by 2.1% in 2007-08 and 4.5% in 2008-09.


General Equalization Aids

  • Provide $4,722,745,900 in 2007-08 and $4,799,501,900 in 2008-09; represents increases of $0 in 2007-08 and $76,756,000 (1.6%) in 2008-09.

Revenue Limits

  • Declining Enrollment-Increase declining enrollment hold harmless calculation from 75% to 100%.,/li>
  • Severe Declining Enrollment Districts-Provide all districts receive prior year base revenue limit regardless of enrollment decline.
  • Low Revenue Ceiling-Increase from $8,400 per pupil in 2006-07 to $8,700 in 2007-08 and $9,000 in 2008-09.


  • Increase the credit by $79,350,000 in 2007-08 and $154,350,000 in 2008-09; each amount is payable by the state in the subsequent fiscal year (i.e. the $154,350,000 increase will be paid as part of the 2009-11 biennial budget). Annual increase is $79,350,000 in 2007-08 and $75,000,000 in 2008-09.
  • The 2007-08 increase is approximately equal to the amount of General Equalization Aids that was previously proposed, but unable to be included in the October 15, 2007 aid certification by DPI.
  • The additional $75,000,000 in 2008-09 is to be paid out under a new "First Dollar Credit" formula, separate from the remaining $747,400,000. The new formula is similar to the current lottery credit distribution formula.


New Categorical Aid Programs

  • Nursing Services Grants-Provide $250,000 GPR annually to school districts, other than MPS, for nursing services.
  • Aid to High Poverty Districts-Provide $9 million in 2007-08 and $12 million in 2008-09 for certain districts with high levels of pupils eligible for free and reduced-price lunch (this is primarily as an offset for MPS to pay for the MPCP funding issue; it is projected that MPS will receive approx. $17 of the $21 million).
  • MPS Academic Achievement Grants-Provide $10 million GPR for MPS in 2008-09 to improve pupil academic achievement. While funding is in DPI appropriation schedule, MPS must apply to, and receive approval from, DOA to receive the grants.
  • Sparsity Aid-Provide $3.6 million GPR in 2008-09 for small, rural districts that are: (1) less than 725 pupils; (2) population density of less than 10 pupils per square mile; and (3) at least 20% of pupils eligible for Free and Reduced-Price lunch. Aid would equal $150 per pupil but would likely be prorated to roughly $75 per pupil given appropriation provided.
  • Supplemental Special Education Aid-Provide $1.75 million for supplemental special education aid in 2008-09 to certain districts that have the following: (1) per pupil revenue below the state average; (2) special education expenditures that exceeded 16% of the district's total expenditures; and (3) fewer than 2,000 pupils.
  • 4K Start-Up Grants-Provide $3 million GPR in 2008-09 for districts that start 4K programs.
  • STEM Grants-Provide $61,500 GPR annually to promote education in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM).
  • Consolidation Grants-Provide $250,000 GPR one-time in 2008-09 for school district consolidation studies.

Existing Categorical Aid Programs

  • Special Education Aid-Provide $53.6 million GPR over the biennium to increase state support for children with disabilities educated by school districts, CESA's, CCDEB's, and independent charter schools.
  • SAGE-Provide nearly $26.8 million over the biennium for districts to meet current law obligations that increase funding from $2,000 to $2,250 per low-income pupil; fully-funds reestimated need.
  • Transportation Aid-Increase state transportation aid reimbursement by 22 percent (from $180 to $220 per pupil) for school districts transporting pupils that reside more than 12 miles from school.
  • School Breakfast Aid-Provide $3.3 million over the biennium to increase the state reimbursement rate for all school districts serving school breakfasts from 10 to 15 cents.
  • Support for Gifted and Talented Pupils-Provide $91,000 GPR annually (over base of $182,000) to continue to support school districts that provide challenging advanced curriculum for middle schools pupils.


  • La Causa Charter School-Provide $250,000 SEG (Universal Service Fund) in 2007-08 for the La Cause Charter School in Milwaukee for library, science, and technology improvements.
  • Aid for Transporting Pupils over Ice-Allocate $35,000 GPR annually from the current pupil transportation appropriation to reimburse districts transporting pupils to and from an island over ice.
  • Belmont School Library-Provide $18,000 GPR in 2007-08 to Belmont School District for its library.
  • One-Time Grants-Provide $50,000 GPR in 2007-08 and $12,500 GPR in 2008-09 to the following groups: (1) Big Brother/Big Sisters of Dane County; (2) Latino Community Center at Milwaukee South High School; and (3) Badger State Science and Engineering Fair.
  • Grants to Study Consolidation-Allocate $30,000 in 2007-08 from the Supplemental Aid appropriation as a grant to the Butternut school district to study consolidation. These funds are projected to otherwise lapse from this existing appropriation.


  • Statewide Data System Positions-Provide 4.0 FTE IT positions. Must be funded by internal program revenue funds; no new GPR money.
  • Grants for Master Educators-Provide $57,200 in 2007-08 and $116,100 in 2008-09 for incentive grants for teachers earning Master Educator licenses.
  • Grants for Teachers in High Poverty Schools-Provide $83,400 annually for nationally-certified and master teachers employed in schools with at least 60% of pupils eligible for free and reduced price lunch.
  • Project Lead the Way-Provide $250,000 GPR annually for grants to Project Lead the Way.
  • Precollege Scholarship Program-Provide increase of $108,900 GPR annually.
  • WKCE Funding-Provide $1.4 million GPR annually to fund increased in cost of WKCE. Funds to be place in Joint Finance appropriation.
  • Public Library System Aid-Provide $1.88 million SEG to increase public library system aid by 4% annually.
  • Library System Contracts-Provide $477,600 GPR over the biennium for these four contracts.
  • Badgerlink-Provide $111,700 SEG over the biennium to maintain current contracts.
  • Newsline-Provide $38,500 SEG in 2007-08 and $40,500 SEG in 2008-09 to maintain the Newsline for the Blind services. Funding with Universal Service Funds.
  • WSD-Provide $71,600 GPR over the biennium for a residential occupational therapy program.
  • WSD-Provide $47,500 GPR over the biennium for distance education.


  • New budget would require $200 million in state agency operations lapses, an increase of $120 million from the Governor's original budget bill.
  • International Education-Provide $38,000 GPR annually for international education activities.


  • Provide DOA with $180,200 GPR and 2.0 FTE annually to staff the Office of the WI Covenant Scholars Program.
  • Provide authorizing legislation in HEAB to establish a WI Covenant Scholars grant program.


  • Bilingual-Bicultural Aid-No increase provided.
  • SAGE Expansion-No new funding provided for new schools to join program in 2008-09.
  • QEO Repeal-Not included.
  • School Safety Revenue Limit Exemption-Not included.
  • Teacher Mentoring Revenue Limit Exemption-Not included.
  • MPCP Auditor-Not included.