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More money for Career Ladder sought

By Marshall Griffin, St. Louis Public Radio

Jefferson City, Mo. – The chairman of the Missouri Senate Appropriations Committee is calling on Governor Jay Nixon to consider providing more money for the Career Ladder program this year when new revenue estimates come in.

Career Ladder provides extra income to teachers who take on extra duties, but the program is funded retroactively: Money for the current school year won't be provided until Fiscal Year 2010.

State Senator Gary Nodler (R, Joplin) says if the December revenue estimate indicates there's enough money to keep Career Ladder going, he wants Governor Nixon to issue a supplemental budget request at that time.

"So that school districts and teachers would know at the earliest possible date whether or not that reimbursement is going to occur...and if he will request a supplemental appropriation from the General Assembly, I will support the request and I will vote for that request," Nodler said.

At a press conference in September, House Democrats accused GOP leaders of seeking to de-fund Career Ladder.

Today, they called Nodler's proposal "damage control."


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