Colin J. Schmitt, candidate for the 99th Assembly District, last week called for the $670 million in mortgage settlement funds set to be received by the State of New York to be utilized to benefit New York State students.
Colin Schmitt is specifically calling for the funds to be used to 1) Provide relief to the North Rockland Central School District and its Mirant tax certiorari settlement debt 2) Fund conversion to full day kindergarten for the remaining nine school districts in New York State that do not offer it.
Schmitt said, “New York State has landed a $670 million settlement from the fallout of the 2008 mortgage crisis. There is no better use for these funds than to benefit students across New York State. North Rockland Schools have been struggling since the Mirant settlement placed $224 Million in debt on the district and taxpayers. Many have sought solutions, this is the answer. This financial windfall can help school districts like North Rockland deal with unique crises like the Mirant settlement and power plant closures that unduly burden our local property taxpayers.”
Schmitt continued, “We should also use the settlement money to fund full-day kindergarten for every school in New York that does not have it yet. North Rockland and Washingtonville School districts in the Hudson Valley are two of nine remaining districts in the state that do not offer full day kindergarten. Countless studies and common sense show students are at significant disadvantage for life by not starting out their education with full-day kindergarten. These nine districts span the state affecting students in the Hudson Valley, Long Island and Western New York.”
“The State Legislature can get this done. When elected it will be my top education funding priority.”