The Senate has approved a second coronavirus relief bill, which if passed, would revive the previous package's small business loan program that quickly ran out of funding. Local small business owners have expressed their anger and frustration over what they say is a complicated application process and lack of support by the government.

This hour, we discuss the new relief package and what small business owners need to know. Our guest answers questions from listeners who need help with the application process. Our guest:

Students in the wealthiest school districts in New York State enjoy the highest per-pupil funding -- sometimes as high as $70,000 per pupil. Poorer districts can operate with roughly $15,000 per pupil. This disparity is part of the debate over school aid funding.

New York spends 87% more than the national average on education, but it's wildly imbalanced. Governor Cuomo's team defends the formula but agrees that it should be updated; critics across the state want changes. We discuss it with a panel of educational leaders:

  • Kimberle Ward, superintendent of Gates Chili Central School District
  • Mark Linton, superintendent of East Rochester Union Free Central School District
  • Dave Green, assistant superintendent for finance and operations at East Rochester Union Free Central School District

The Monroe County Democratic Committee is being investigated for a series of large donations that found their way to then-State Senator Ted O'Brien's re-election campaign in 2014. Who sent that $225,000, and did the committee break any rules or laws?

Our guests look at money in politics, and what this affair tells us. Our guests:

  • Dave Andreatta, columnist with the Democrat & Chronicle
  • Dave McLaughlin, money in politics activist

State medical schools use a variety of funding sources for research, but officials are not getting as much money as they’d like in the state budget. Universities say this limits their ability to recruit and retain researchers. We’ll talk to university reps who are trying to get high stakes research funded:

  • John Sharp, chancellor of Texas A&M University System
  • Jo Wiederhorn, president of the Associated Medical Schools of New York
  • Dr. Stephen Dewhurst, vice dean for Research at the University of Rochester School of Medicine and Dentistry

Then we focus on Affinity Place, which offers peer based crisis mental health services. We’ll talk mental health and more with our guests:

  • Cheri Reed Watt, associate director of Paul Wolk Commons and program manager for Affinity Place
  • Greg Soehner, President & CEO, East House

So much discussion of school funding focuses on urban districts. But now, a number of rural western New York districts are raising a collective voice, warning of “big inequities” and “dire consequences.” They’ve pulled in the business community, too. We have two rural superintendents to talk about this: 

  • Matt Cole, superintendent of Livonia Schools
  • Ken Ellison, superintendent of Pavillion Schools

Connections: Education Funding

Jul 31, 2014

Superintendents in suburban and rural districts throughout New York State say they face a fiscal cliff. They accuse legislators of falling down on the job to equitably fund the state’s public education system. We’ll discuss the Gap Elimination Adjustment, plans to use settlement funds towards money still owed to schools, and proposals for future education funding with our panel: 

Jody Siegle, executive director of Monroe County School Boards Association

Mike Pero, superintendent of Pittsford Central School District and vice president of Monroe County 

Julie Christensen, superintendent of Kendall Central School District and president of Monroe County Superintendents

Rick Timbs, Statewide School Finance Consortium