The New York State Senate has passed legislation that completely abolishes the Gap Elimination Adjustment (GEA) this year. Nearly $434 million in GEA cuts remain for schools in 2016-17.
Senator Michael Ranzenhofer voted in favor of the bill.
“One of the top priorities for this Legislative Session is to get rid of the GEA budgets cuts. I am proud to support the Senate-approved legislation as the first order of business. It’s time for the Assembly Democrats to join with us,” said Ranzenhofer.
Governor Andrew Cuomo proposed a phase-out of the GEA over two years during his State of the State address.
“We must end the disastrous GEA this year. The time is overdue to eliminate the GEA, along with its devastating impact on funding for public schools,” said Ranzenhofer. “Abolishing the GEA will finally restore millions of dollars in state aid to our schools and build a better future for our children.”
The GEA was first imposed in 2010 by former Governor David Paterson and the Democrats who controlled the Senate and Assembly. Senator Ranzenhofer voted against the GEA because it made severe cuts to the bottom lines of school districts in Western New York.
Since it was first approved, Senator Ranzenhofer has been leading the charge to eradicate the GEA and deliver major funding increases to help mitigate its devastating impact on education.
In the past five years, the GEA cuts have been reduced by approximately 85 percent. Last year alone, Senator Ranzenhofer successfully pushed for an additional $603 million to help schools overcome the GEA challenge.
The bill has been sent to the State Assembly.