The budget released by Gov. Hickenlooper in February looked dismal at best, with a $332 million cut to schools K-12 and a $36 million cut to higher education. But due to an accounting â€œglitch,â€ $75.5 million more was found in the 2010-11 fiscal year.
While we think whoever the accountant was that made such a significant error should be fired, weâ€™re also grateful for the extra money and what Hickenlooper plans to do with it.
The governor is proposing giving an additional $23.3 million to schools K-12 and putting the remaining amount in reserves. $32.2 million would go to help Colorado achieve a 4 percent general-fund reserve, almost double the 2.3 percent reserve the state now maintains.
Some will argue that the newly found $75.5 million should go to help offset other budget cuts hurting Colorado jobs and education, but we think Hickenlooperâ€™s move is brilliant. The budget for the 2011-12 fiscal year has already been made, so why not take the additional money and help cushion Colorado for the future?
K-12 schools were in desperate need of money to ensure students are getting the best education they can. The United Statesâ€™ future depends on upcoming generations and the education they receive. They needed the $23.3 million extra to ensure this happens.
But now Colorado has some extra money to fall back on should times get hard again, something the state should have been doing in more prosperous times. So the Editorial Board says good job, Hickenlooper.