Republicans Kill Education Expense Transparency Bill

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Boise Democratic Rep. Brian Cronin's attempt to introduce more transparency into public education died in an Idaho House committee hearing on Wednesday. Cronin was asking for financial reporting from any education management organization receiving state funding to detail its use of those Idaho tax dollars.

But in a party-line vote, Republican members of the House Education Committee nixed the bill.

"It's picking on K12," said Coeur d'Alene Republican Rep. Bob Nonini, the committee's chairman.

Nonini was referring to K12 Inc., the operator of two Idaho virtual charter schools, currently being sued by shareholders accusing the Virginia-based company of making false claims of students' performance to secure more business. The corporation and its executives have donated tens of thousands of dollars to Superintendent of Public Instruction Tom Luna's political campaigns.

The measure was one of Cronin's last sponsorships in the Idaho Legislature - at least for now. The Boise Democrat talks to BW this week about his decision to step away from the Statehouse.

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