JCEA pres. fuming after new school funding formula costs Jersey City $8.5M

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Jersey City Education Association President Ron Greco is fuming at the Hudson County legislators who approved a new school funding formula that will cost his school district $8.5 million.

Ron Greco

By John Heinis/Hudson County View

“It is extremely disappointing that the state legislators representing Hudson County, and specifically Jersey City, passed the state budget with zero dialogue concerning the impending cuts to the Jersey City Public Schools,” Greco said in an email.

Greco continued by stating he recently wrote a letter to Assembly Speaker Vincent Prieto (D-32), state Senate President Steve Sweeney, the Hudson County legislators and Mayor Steven Fulop asking them to consider the negative consequences of this formula.

However, that request fell on deaf ears, according to Greco, who says that is something the New Jersey Education Association and the JCEA will not forget during election season.

“This request for consideration has seemingly been disregarded, since none of them responded. Perhaps the NJEA and JCEA will not hear their concerns when they are soliciting monetary donations for their reelection bids in November.”

The Hudson County legislators are state Senators Sandra Cunningham (D-31), Nick Sacco (D-32) and Brian Stack (D-33), while Angela McKnight, Nick Chiaravalloti (both D-31), Prieto, Angelica Jimenez (D-32), Raj Mukherji and Annette Chaparro (D-33) are the Assembly reps.

All of the aforementioned Trenton representative will be on the general election ballot on November 7th.

The new school funding formula was passed with the state budget and a reworked Horizon bill after a three-day standoff between Prieto and Gov. Chris Christie (R) that caused a state shutdown – the first of its kind since 2006.

The timing puts a dark cloud over the fact that the Jersey City Public Schools are supposed to regain full control from the state for the first time in over 30 years tomorrow, as Fulop noted on his Twitter page.

While the Jersey City Public Schools was one of the biggest losers from the current latest set of circumstances in Trenton, the neighboring City of Bayonne saw their school district gain $3.2 million in funding.

“I think it’s commonly known that Senate President Sweeney, Governor Christie and their allies had commented for months about their push for Jersey City to lose funding to the tune of $100 million in state aid,” said city spokeswoman Jennifer Morrill.

“Our legislators in Trenton pushed back and saved Jersey City $92 million. I think in this environment, and with this governor against us, any reasonable person would say our legislators did a good job in fighting to secure a huge amount of money for Jersey City.”

Hudson County legislators did not immediately return requests seeking comment this afternoon.