FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
February 14, 2005
STATEMENT BY MAYOR MICHAEL R. BLOOMBERG ON CAMPAIGN FOR FISCAL EQUITY RULING
"Today's ruling is another historic victory for New York City's public school students. Over the next four years, our schools will see billions of additional capital and expense dollars so that we can provide students with their 'constitutionally mandated opportunity for a sounds basic education.' These funds will be dedicated to fulfilling one of my top priorities and our City's most important mission: ensuring that every public school student has the opportunity to get a high-quality and meaningful education.
"As far as who must now come up with these funds, I am especially pleased that Judge DeGrasse recognized that 'equities...weigh heavily against the State in light of its long documented history of shortchanging the City's public schools.' Although, even in light of the chronic and consistent under-funding, Judge DeGrasse believes that he lacks the power to prevent the State from forcing the City to providing the necessary funds, it is clear that such a solution would be grievously unfair. The wrongs imposed on the City's students resulted from the State's failures, and if new funds are required, the Legislature must make certain that these funds come from all of the State's taxpayers.
"I hope and anticipate that Governor Pataki, Speaker Silver, Senate Majority Leader Bruno and all of the members of the Legislature will now step up to the plate and implement expeditiously a State solution to this State-caused problem. I look forward to working with them to ensure that the Court's order is immediately complied with so that our children can begin to receive the quality education they deserve."
Edward Skyler (212) 788-2958