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Abbott, Patrick disagree on special session for school funding

🕐 1 min read

Days after Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick suggested that Gov. Greg Abbott call a 30-day special session to overhaul the state’s school funding system, Abbott said Monday that no such special session was needed. 

Patrick told the Midland Reporter-Telegram last week that there is not enough time during next year’s 140-day regular session to discuss overhauling the controversial “Robin Hood” school funding system, which redistributes money from property-rich school districts to property-poor districts. 

“If the governor is willing, I am willing to address it in a special session,” Patrick told the newspaper. 

But Abbott made clear Monday that he is not willing. His office issued a statement saying the matter should be thoroughly discussed in regular session — not a separate special session. 

“Governor Abbott believes Texans deserve for issues—including fixing a broken Robin Hood system—to be thoroughly debated and addressed in a regular session where responsible and hardworking legislators have plenty of time to address these serious topics. Texans don’t want a full-time legislature, they want a legislature that can get their work done and then go home,” spokesman John Wittman wrote in a statement. 

In May, the Texas Supreme Court upheld the state’s school finance system as constitutional while also deeming it “undeniably imperfect” and urging lawmakers to make improvements. 

This article originally appeared in The Texas Tribune at https://www.texastribune.org/2016/10/31/patrick-abbott-disagree-school-funding-special-ses/.

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