Good news!  I just received the following from Delegate Jackson  Miller:

Today, Governor Bob McDonnell announced that he will undo the freeze to the Local Composite Index that former Governor Tim Kaine proposed before he left office.  Prince William County, Manassas City, and Manassas Park City Schools would have suffered greatly had he not made this bold move in support of our schools throughout the Commonwealth.  I applaud Governor McDonnell for his leadership and thank him on behalf of our community. 
Below is the press release from the Governor’s office: 



Governor McDonnell to Undo Proposed Freeze of Local Composite Index

-Introduced Budget Froze LCI for First Time –

Governor Identifies Savings to Allow for Annual Update to Index


RICHMOND – Governor Bob McDonnell announced today that he will support updating the Local Composite Index (LCI), the formula which determines state and local education funding responsibility, in the upcoming budget.  The move will mean another proposed change to the introduced budget, which froze the LCI at its current level. The LCI has historically always been adjusted every two years to account for changing local economic conditions. The proposal to freeze the Index was unprecedented, and would have cost certain localities in Northern Virginia $128.3 million in state education funding.

Speaking about his decision, Governor McDonnell stated, “For nearly forty years, the Local Composite Index has been an impartial means by which to determine state and local responsibility for education funding in Virginia. The application of this Index has always been done in an objective manner, using the most recent fiscal data to most fairly apportion state resources. For many school districts, particularly in Northern Virginia, the biennial update of the Index has meant far less funding from the state than that received by school districts in localities experiencing lesser rates of economic growth. Accordingly, I will not support the proposed freeze in the budget introduced by the previous Administration. The Local Composite Index must be applied to all localities, at all times, in the same objective and fair manner by which it has always been utilized.”

McDonnell continued, “The decision to continue to update the Local Composite Index is one that I reached after extensive meetings with my finance staff, legislators, and local government officials. I thank all these individuals for their input and thoughts during the process. Ensuring that we have a fair formula that is implemented without regard to temporary or political considerations is the best means by which to appropriate education funding in the Commonwealth. Every time the Index is readjusted some school systems gain funding, while others receive less. This has occurred for nearly forty years, and local officials understand the routine and objective biennial implementation of the Index.”

In announcing his decision to undo the proposed freeze of the Index, McDonnell also identified specific budget savings to account for the additional state spending required. The update will cost the state $29 million in FY 2011. To cover this increased funding, McDonnell will recommend to the General Assembly the transfer of $13 million from Literary Fund balances; $8 million through the use of available balances in the Health Insurance Fund to reduce state health insurance premiums; $5.2 million will be found in Real ID savings and an available $3 million will be captured in additional Non-General Fund balances.  Budget recommendations will continue to be made and communicated to the legislature in the coming days.


A big thank you to Jackson Miller for the notification.  He knew some of us here were clamoring  for Governor McDonnell to remove the freeze.  Also a big thank you to Poor Richard for raising the level of concern here on this blog. 

15 Thoughts to “LCI to be Unfrozen by Governor McDonnell”

  1. Way to go, Poor Richard and Jackson Miller. We need good news today!

  2. This decision brings a lot of money back to PWC and the 2 cities.

  3. Poor Richard

    This is great news for public education in Northern Virginia! Thousands of
    students in our commmunities will benefit from Gov. McDonnell’s decision.
    Thanks to Jackson Miller and everyone who helped this happen!

  4. Witness Too

    I’m glad this proposal will not be going through. Choking the economic engine of the Commonwealth (NoVA) is bad policy as both Deeds and McDonnell pointed out during the campaign.

  5. kelly3406

    I am very happy to see this decision reversed. Not only will it benefit PWC students, it is a great example of democracy in action. Rather than freezing the LCI to benefit a particular region (to the detriment of another), McDonnell will allow the process to adjust the LCI fairly. Applying laws fairly and equitably without regard to region, class, sex, or race is an example of true conservatism.

  6. I don’t think the move was political. I like to think it was just common sense.

  7. Rez

    So Governor Kaine’s approach lacked common sense? Who would have guessed?

  8. Rez

    Does it go with pottyless interstates?

  9. I wasn’t crazy about the suggestion, that’s for sure. I think Kaine was throwing out the baby with the bathwater on LCI.

  10. Rez

    Wolfie, they all do things we don’t agree with. It wasn’t my decision or yours, it was theirs.

  11. I can’t even be fair about the pottyless interstates. How can a state that gets so much of its revenue from tourism close the potties? Lets take this a step further….how can a state that gets as much revenue from tourism have such shoddy bathrooms to start with?

    The main drag from Colonial Williamsburg to the State Capital (which just happened to be the capital of the Confederacy) has 2 of the nastiest bathrooms known to man on it. They were just embarrassing. Compare and contrast the bathroom situation in Maryland, North Carolina, to Virginia. Virginia looks like the poor relations’ don’s john.

  12. Rez

    I thought they built a nice, new one down near Williamsburg?

  13. Maybe they did. But the older ones were dreadful. I especially hated the one with recycled toilets.

    I haven’t been down there in about 3 years.

  14. Gainesville Resident

    The one near Williamsburg didn’t strike me as anything too great. Although, I haven’t been down that way regularly since 2008, when I was traveling to Norfolk nearly every other week for work. The bathrooms in there struck me as not good, let’s put it that way. Maybe it improved, which makes the decision to temporarily shut it down even more stupid (I’m not sure though if that was one of the ones shut down).

    Anyway, it was a dumb idea – just from a safety point of view – we don’t want sleepy truckers and motorists trying to look off the interstate exits for places to pull over in the middle of the night. But it was wrong for many reasons, particularly tourism and giving the state a bad image with a lot of boarded up ugly looking rest areas!

    I’m glad to see the right decision was made on the LCI formula.

    That’s two bad things Kaine did that have been undone, which is good.

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