HEADLINES : Alabama
Proposed state school budget contains cuts
A state Senate committee approved an education budget Wednesday that reduces funding for public schools and universities, cuts teaching jobs and enlarges class sizes for the 2012-13 school year.
The budget, approved unanimously by the Senate Finance and Taxation-Education Committee, is a redesigned version of the budget that Gov. Robert Bentley recommended to the Legislature in February. It was the Legislature's first action on the budget.
"It's lean, but we're maintaining the critical and essential parts of education in this state," the committee chairman, Republican Sen. Trip Pittman of Daphne said.
The committee's budget discussion was different from past years because no one talked about wasteful spending or making schools more efficient.
"When you look at the budget, you realize how well managed Alabama is," Pittman told the committee.
The $5.5 billion budget is about $150 million, or 2.7 percent, smaller than this year's budget.