The Joint Finance-Appropriations Committee has set a budget for state Superintendent of Schools Tom Luna that relies on a federal grant to fund a longitudinal data system, plus allows Luna to carry over $80,000 from this year’s budget for that purpose. Gov. Butch Otter had called for spending federal stimulus money for the student tracking system, but the project didn’t qualify for that piece of the stimulus. Luna said he’s OK with the JFAC action. “Because of our successful federal grant, we’re going to be able to keep moving forward,” he said. As for the stimulus money, “It didn’t qualify.” He added, “We’re still going to be about $2.5 million short by the time we’re done, so we’re still going to have to address that, if not now in the near future.” That could mean in a future year, he said.
Betsy Z. Russell covers Idaho news from The Spokesman-Review's bureau in Boise.
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