Congress defeats Doolittle’s amendment |

Congress defeats Doolittle’s amendment

An amendment to a bill that would have funded rural schools for the fiscal year 2008 was defeated Wednesday in the House of Representatives due to a procedural motion that prevented an up-or-down vote from occurring.

Congressman John Doolittle, R-Roseville, had proposed the amendment to bring funding to rural counties to compensate for the land the federal government took while creating the National Forest System. The money would fund schools, roads, and other public services.

Though the amendment didn’t reach a vote, Gordon Hinkle, Doolittle’s communications director, said the congressman secured a commitment to ensure funding to rural schools for several years. According to Hinkle, House Appropriations Committee Chairman David Obey, DÐWisc., and ranking member Jerry Lewis, R-Calif., will contact the appropriate authorizing committees to provide a long-term reauthorization to the Secure Rural Schools program.

The Secure Rural Schools and Community Self-Determination Act, the legislation which authorized the funding, ended in September 2006. Though the Congress passed a one-year extension to the legislation, the money, in some cases, arrived after layoff notices had been issued to teachers and public works officials.

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