Indiana budget increases could be pinched by slower tax growth

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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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