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“Learning outcomes are maximized when a diverse group values individual strengths to achieve common goals. Our students, parents, teachers and staff, local business, government and community organizations all contribute to creating a positive school climate that is unique in Morgan Hill.” Steve Betando, MHUSD Superintendent LCFF and $373 million for other programs, primarily special education programs. As Flores noted, “It’s a small increase, but we welcome it.” Based on what they’ve heard from Sacramento, our school districts must provide their budgets to the county before the state’s revised budget is released in early May. Then it’s fingers crossed that nothing substantially changes between May and June when the state will approve and adopt the final budget. Ballot Initiatives in 2020 In 2020, the Fair and Full Funding Initiative will be on the ballot. If passed, it would apply pressure on corporations to loosen their grip on tax breaks and exemptions, and shift much-needed funds to education. According to California Budget and Policy Center (CBPC) data, in the past 30 years, the share of California corporate income paid in state taxes declined by more than 50 percent. Looking at 2016, the most recent year for which data is available, our state budget would have received $10.9 billion more revenue had corporations paid the same share of their income in taxes as they did in 1981. Corporate tax breaks, exemptions, and deductions add further adverse impacts. For example, a tax break dating back to 1987, described by the CBPC as a ‘water’s edge’ provision, cost the state roughly $2.2 billion in 2018-19 alone. In total, California is projected to spend $6.6 billion on tax expenditures for corporations in 2018-19. By reducing spending on corporate tax breaks, the state would have more resources available to invest in systems and programs such as higher education and workforce development that would not only help improve the lives of Californians, but also boost the state’s economy and produce an educated workforce that would benefit the state’s employers, including major corporations. “Lower per-student funding means larger class sizes, less favorable student-teacher ratios, and reduced services,” Flores said. “People have to vote their conscience, but this vote will GILROY • MORGAN HILL • SAN MARTIN april/may 2019 gmhtoday.com 37