Whether or not the Mississippi Adequate Education Program Formula will change is up to lawmakers–and the discussion surrounding it, if it were to happen this year, has to come in a special session as the other bills to alter the formula have died.
But Thursday, the Senate Appropriations committee voted to fund MAEP at $2.2 billion dollars as a backup, in case a new formula isn’t adopted this year.
The possibility of a special session to address the funding formula still looms, but Governor Phil Bryant said other things have to fall into place first.
“We always have discussions of a special session,” said Governor Bryant. “The one with the most validity to it would be the special session within the session to discuss the MAEP education formula.”
But the Governor can’t just call a special session on a whim.
“That would take the leader in the House and Senate, the Lt. Governor and the Speaker, coming together, agreeing on a bill, and believing they could get enough of their memberships to pass anything with reform,” said Governor Bryant. “If that occurs, I would look forward to calling a special session because I do believe that needs to happen.”
Senator Sean Tindell spoke to the Paul Gallo Show about the possibility of a special session.
“It could be,” said Tindell. “I think that’s something both sides are working on. The people that are engaged in that… they’re trying to come up with some solutions.”
Senator Hob Bryan said a special session this year would be taking this issue up too quickly.
“It’s ludicrous, ludicrous, to think that in what they call ‘a special session within the session’ that we can take on rewriting the entire education funding formula,” said Bryan.