Mar 7, 2005
For the third year in a row, top Republicans and Democrats in the state are holding funding for public schools hostage – until slot machine gambling is legalized and taxed or the sales tax is increased.
A six-year plan to increase school funding was approved by the legislature and governor in 2002. But in 2003, the very first year of the plan, the state shortchanged the schools by 40 million dollars; then in 2004, by 80 million. The politicians are now threatening to withhold an additional 100 million dollars.
During this same period, over two-thirds of the largest and most profitable corporations in Maryland – like Wal-Mart, Comcast and Home Depot – paid no taxes at all.
Now, with budget deficits created by these giveaways looming, the politicians are holding funds for the schools hostage.
They might as well wear a ski-mask, because they sure act like strong-arm bandits – and not the one-armed kind!