When the Florida Legislature passed its 2013-14 budget in May, lawmakers touted a $1 billion increase in education spending as one of their major accomplishments. “Lawmakers boost education spending,” declared a Miami Herald headline. “Florida budget adds to school spending,” trumpeted The New York Times.
What the legislators didn’t highlight in their post-session chest-thumping was that much of the increased funding didn’t come from state revenues, such as sales or corporate taxes or the lottery, but from increases in the so-called “required local effort” millage rate local school districts must levy on property owners in their counties.
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