Otter: Cut education, public TV, research center - Spokane, North Idaho News & Weather KHQ.com

Otter: Cut education, public TV, research center

BOISE, Idaho. - Gov. C.L. "Butch" Otter aims to balance Idaho's budget by cutting another $40 million from this year's spending, through trimming public education and delaying cash for a
livestock research center near Twin Falls that was due to get $10 million.
     
The Republican, who delivered his State of the State speech Monday to open the 2010 Legislature, also wants to trim 400 state jobs, raise Idaho state parks fees and eliminate state funding to Idaho Public Television and six more agencies by 2014 in an overhaul of government priorities.
     
He won't boost taxes, as minority Democrats had suggested.
     
Otter said, "It is not our place to impose an additional economic burden on the people of Idaho who already are struggling."
     
For fiscal year 2011 starting in July, Otter proposed a budget of $2.46 billion.

Luna: Schools need more flexibility to make cuts

Superintendent of Public Instruction Tom Luna says public schools will need more flexibility to weather a proposed $27 million midyear cut, including the ability to modify teacher contracts.
     
Luna says schools districts set aside most of their money for educators' salaries and a rainy day account to shield K-12 education from cuts in the middle of the year has all but been depleted, leaving few funding sources left.
     
Gov. C.L. "Butch" Otter said Monday he aims to balance Idaho's budget for this year by cutting another $40 million, a plan that calls for trimming public education spending and delaying cash for a livestock research center near Twin Falls.
     
Senate Minority Leader Kate Kelly, D-Boise, says she has huge concerns about the cuts to public education, which amount to closing public schools for one day every month until the end of the fiscal year in June.

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