Tornado Watch issued for several Indiana counties until 2 a.m.

Indiana Republicans say budget deal will boost funding for schools

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INDIANAPOLIS, Ind.– Top Indiana Statehouse Republicans are touting their state budget plan that increases base school funding by 2.5% percent each of the next two years as making strides toward improving teacher pay.

Gov. Eric Holcomb joined GOP legislative leaders Tuesday in announcing a budget deal that’s expected to be approved Wednesday as this year’s General Assembly session ends.

Republican leaders say they are also helping school districts by paying off $150 million of their teacher pension obligations and by boosting a program giving one-time stipends to teachers.

Holcomb says the funding boost is a good immediate step while a group he appointed studies long-term ways to improve the state’s lagging teacher salaries.

Democrats say the state could direct more money to schools by either tapping the state’s nearly $2 billion in cash reserves or suspending previously approved corporate tax cuts.

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