AZ superintendent: Legislature must remove education spending cap; schools face major cuts

Published: Tuesday, November 1, 2022 - 1:47pm
Updated: Wednesday, November 2, 2022 - 12:19pm
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Arizona Superintendent of Public Instruction Kathy Hoffman once again has called on the state Legislature to lift the spending cap on education.

In a letter, she says schools have exceeded the limit by more than a billion dollars, and if lawmakers don't fix the cap, district schools will face a nearly 18% budget cut.

She says class sizes will be larger, schools will close, and the teacher shortage will get even worse.

The Legislature has until March to make a decision.

While lawmakers approved a budget that is about $7.8 billion, schools will only be able to spend $6.4 billion without legislative approval. 

House speaker Rusty Bowers said he’s willing to bring legislators back to the capitol before the next session starts in January, but he’s not optimistic about support. House Minority Leader Democrat Reginald Bolding. 

"This legislature is the one that approved the spending. And this legislature should be the one that approves the spending limit," Bolding said. 

Hoffman is running to be reelected for her position. Republican rival Tom Horne said he agrees with her in this case.