On November 7, 2016, Washington’s Paramount Duty Board Member, Summer Stinson, and Washington’s Paramount Duty’s volunteer, Kathryn Russell Selk, submitted to Washington’s Supreme Court a motion for clarification, in the case of MATTHEW & STEPHANIE McCLEARY, v. The STATE OF WASHINGTON.
In the motion, WPD asked the Court to clarify whether the levy cliff must be addressed by the Legislature in order for the State to “demonstrate steady and measurable progress and to provide a complete plan” for amply funding basic education. The levy cliff will occur on January 1, 2018, when the State’s temporary 4 % increase in the levy lid and Local Effort Assistance (levy equalization) for local school districts expires.
These local levy revenues and levy equalization amounts do not supplant the requirement that the State amply fund basic education with regular and dependable State tax sources to amply fund basic education. However, school districts currently rely on these levies to cover their budgets until the State fully funds basic education.
With the automatic levy cliff scheduled to take effect nine months before the State has the obligation to fully fund public schools, the patient (the public school system) will be off life support (the local levies) before the new heart (regular and dependable State tax sources) is available for surgery.
WPD is a state-wide, non-partisan, grassroots group of parents and allies working to compel the State to amply fund basic education and swiftly fulfill its paramount duty. WPD envisions a future where every child has equitable access to an amply funded basic education.