Texas House OKs school finance fix amid Senate uncertainty

The floor of the Texas State Capitol rotunda (Nexstar Photo)
The floor of the Texas State Capitol rotunda (Nexstar Photo)

AUSTIN, Texas (AP) — The Texas House has again approved a sweeping, $1.8 billion plan to begin overhauling the state’s troubled school finance system.

Republican Rep. Dan Huberty’s proposal increases per-pupil funding while offering extra money for school transportation and educating dyslexic students.

Friday’s 130-12 vote mirrored House support during the regular legislative session. The original bill died after the Texas Senate attached a plan offering taxpayer-funded vouchers letting students attend private schools.

It’s back for the special session, but still faces Senate uncertainty. Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick, who oversees the Senate, has bashed the plan as a “Ponzi scheme,” saying it relies on state budget gimmicks.

Still, Huberty says it’s the “first step in fixing school finance.”

Full school finance reform is required since Texas’ Supreme Court ruled the system minimally constitutional.