§ 16-7.2-1. Legislative findings.
(a) The general assembly recognizes the need for an equitable distribution of resources among the state's school districts, property tax relief and a predicable method of distributing education aid. The general assembly finds that there is a need to reform the way public education is financed because:
(1) All children should have access to an adequate and meaningful education regardless of their residence or economic means;
(2) A school funding system should treat property taxpayers equably, limit the portion of school budgets financed by property taxes, and establish sufficient cost controls on school spending;
(3) The state should ensure that its school funding structure adequately reflects the different needs of students, and closes the educational inequities among the state's school districts; and
(4) The state education funding system should provide a predicable amount and source of funding to ensure stability in the funding of schools.
(b) The intent of this chapter is to promote a school finance system in Rhode Island that is predicated on student need and taxpayer ability to pay. A new school funding system in the state should promote educational equity for all students and reduce the reliance on the property tax to fund public education. This legislation is intended to ensure educational opportunity to each pupil in each city or town on substantially equal terms. Adequate per pupil support will be provided through a combination of state school aid and local education property tax levies.
(P.L. 2004, ch. 393, § 1; P.L. 2004, ch. 491, § 1.)