State rejects school district's $31 million recovery plan

ERIE, Pa. -- The Erie School District's quest to keep the district solvent took a major blow Monday.

The Pennsylvania Department of Education denied the school district's $31 million recovery plan, according to Rep. Pat Harkins.

Harkins said the information was revealed following a conference call with the Department of Education Monday afternoon. Harkins said school district officials met with local legislators, the teachers union, and former senator Jane Earll, who is a school district lobbyist, Monday to discuss the funding situation.

The state has some unanswered questions about the district's financial bailout proposal and it was more than the state could do that this time. Harkins told Action News he feels confident that the school district will receive enough money to help through the 2017-18 school year in which the district is facing a $10 million deficit.

JET 24/FOX 66 spoke with Dr. Jay Badams Monday night.

Despite the process taking more than two months, he says the main reason the plan was rejected is because the department of education and the secretary don't have statutory authority to provide funding.

Badams said "It seems the rules of this game are being written as we go, and just when you think you've satisfied those rules, they change."


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