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Education Rally Targets ‘Gap Elimination’ Damage to Valley Schools

Dr. Rick Timbs speaking on WIBX’s First News with Keeler in the Morning. (Photo by Kristine Bellino / WIBX)

The ‘Fight For Our Valley Schools’ education rally featuring Dr. Rick Timbs of the Statewide  Schools Finance Consortium is scheduled for Thursday night at 6:30 at Herkimer County Community College.

Timbs will break down the school funding Gap Elimination Adjustment in Herkimer County that he says has taken more than $43 million in state funding away from these local schools over the last four years.

“Herkimer BOCES is sponsoring this event to focus our residents’ attention on the simple fact that our schools are forced to make do with fewer resources than more affluent schools in New York state,” Herkimer BOCES District Superintendent Mark Vivacqua said. “Fewer resources translate into fewer opportunities for our valley’s children. Our kids deserve better.”

Timbs spoke this morning on WIBX’s First News with Keeler in the Morning.

Listen to the interview:

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The core of Timbs’ message is that the Gap Elimination Adjustment (GEA) has unfairly penalized the area’s students. The GEA was introduced by Gov. David Paterson in 2009-10 as a temporary cut in promised school aid in an effort to help the state close its budget deficit. Five years later, the state’s deficit has disappeared according to Gov. Andrew Cuomo, but the GEA continues to withhold millions of dollars in promised aid.

Adding further insult is the fact that wealthy New York school districts lost a smaller percentage of aid to the GEA.

The rally begins at 6:30 p.m. at HCCC’s Robert McLaughlin College Center.

Watch the video below to learn more about the Gap Elimination Adjustment:

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