Assemblyman Santabarbara, School Officials and Parents Call for Investment in Our Students

Assemblyman Santabarbara stands with parents at the Greater Amsterdam School District to talk about the need for increased education aid.

Assemblyman Angelo Santabarbara, local school superintendents and parents are calling for New York State to increase its investment in public schools by ending the Gap Elimination Adjustment (GEA) and increasing state aid for our students.

Local schools are struggling to provide the best education possible due to growing financial constraints that limit the resources available for students. The GEA has cut state aid to local school by tens of millions of dollars and had the worst impact on schools in upstate communities. Additionally, the state’s school aid formula has been twisted over time and prevents upstate school districts from receiving the funding they need. Santabarbara is urging the state to invest a portion of its financial settlements towards ending the GEA forever and calling for a new distribution of state aid.

“Investing in our children’s education means eliminating the costly GEA and prioritizing our public schools in the state budget,” said Assemblyman Angelo Santabarbara. “Increasing state aid to our local schools will lower property taxes, restore years of harmful cuts and provide children with the resources they need to succeed.”

The GEA has cost schools in the 111th Assembly District more than $96 million1 , resulting in cuts to programs, a reduction of teachers and increased property taxes. It would cost $1.036 billion2 to eliminate the GEA, which could be accomplished by investing a portion of the state’s financial settlements.

“The GEA has unfairly stripped away millions in state aid from upstate students and I support Assemblyman Santabarbara’s effort to end this disastrous policy,” said Fort Plain Central School District Superintendent Doug Burton.

“New York needs to make public education a priority and update its funding formula so upstate students get equal opportunities,” said Greater Amsterdam School District Superintendent Thomas Perillo. “I applaud Assemblyman Santabarbara’s commitment to our students and will work with him to make we’re investing in a bright future for our public schools.”

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1. New York State Division of Budget

2. Assembly Ways & Means