Indiana budget increases could be pinched by slower tax growth

Indiana schools aren't being promised much additional money after the latest projections showing slower growth in state tax collections.

The forecast released Wednesday to legislators projected about $30 million less in tax revenue than a December report that has been used in preparing the new $34 billion spending plan for the next two years.

Tax revenue is still expected to grow about 2.5% each year, but a jump in expected Medicaid expenses means legislators have about $100 million less to work with.

Republican budget plans have proposed increases between 2% and 2.7% in base school funding. Republican Senate budget leader Ryan Mishler of Bremen said school funding will be a top issue as negotiators work to reach a spending agreement by sometime next week.

Teachers have been pushing lawmakers for more funding in the budget so that schools can make meaningful raises in their pay.

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