The U.S. Senate is now considering a Federal Aviation Administration reauthorization bill that could include an amendment by Sens. Jeff Sessions (R-Ala.) and Claire McCaskill (D-Mo.) to impose a multiyear discretionary spending cap. That amendment may come up for a vote on Wednesday, March 17, so the AFT is asking members to call their senators now and urge them to vote no. The U.S. Capitol switchboard number is 202/224-3121.
While the deficit needs to be dealt with, the AFT doesn't believe that arbitrary spending caps are the answer. When inflation and enrollment growth are accounted for, these caps will lead to cuts in education services. Given the financial crisis faced by states and districts, this could have a very damaging impact on the lives of AFT members and the services they provide. A similar amendment recently came close to passing. [Earl Hadley]
March 16, 2010