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Politics

Education Petition

Republican leaders in the House are calling on Missourians to sign a petition that takes aim at Democratic Governor Bob Holden. KSMU'sMissy Shelton reports. HOUSE SPEAKER CATHERINE HANAWAY SAYS SHE'S TAKING HER CASE TO THE VOTERS.

THE REPUBLICAN LEADER IS URGING MISSOURIANS TO SIGN A PETITION DESIGNED TO PRESSURE GOVERNOR BOB HOLDEN INTO RELEASING NEARLY 200 MILLION DOLLARS IN EDUCATION MONEY.

HOLDEN WITHHELD THE MONEY BACK IN JULY.

HANAWAY SAYS THERE'S NO REASON FOR THE GOVERNOR TO KEEP THAT MONEY AWAY FROM SCHOOLS.

HANAWAY AND OTHER REPUBLICANS ARGUE THAT IF STATE REVENUE COLLECTIONS ARE UP, THEN THERE'S NO REASON TO WITHHOLD MONEY FROM EDUCATION.

BUT THE GOVERNOR SAYS HE HAS NO CHOICE...HE'S DOING WHAT HE HAS TO DO GIVEN THE STATE'S FISCAL SITUATION.

WHILE THE GOVERNOR SAYS HE HAS NO CHOICE BUT TO WITHHOLD THE MONEY, HOUSE REPUBLICANS SAY THE GOVERNOR HAS OTHER OPTIONS.

HANAWAY SAYS LAWMAKERS DON'T AGREE WITH HIS CHOICE.

BUT IF YOU ASK THE ADMINISTRATION, THOSE REVENUE FIGURES DON'T TELL THE WHOLE STORY.

THE GOVERNOR'S BUDGET DIRECTOR, LINDA LUEBBERING SAYS YOU HAVE TO LOOK AT WHAT'S HAPPENING IN THE CONTEXT OF THE ENTIRE FISCAL YEAR...SHE SAYS THE ACTUAL INCOMING REVENUE IS IN LINE WITH WHAT HER OFFICE PREDICTED.

TAXPAYERS WILL GET MONEY BACK AS FEDERAL TAX CUTS KICK IN. FEDERAL TAX REDUCTIONS MAKE STATE TAXES GO DOWN.

AT A PRESS CONFERENCE RESPONDING TO THE PETITION DRIVE, THE GOVERNOR HAD SOME HARSH WORDS FOR REPUBLICANS.

BUT IT'S NOT JUST HOUSE REPUBLICANS WHO SAY THEY GOVERNOR NEEDS TO RELEASE THE EDUCATION MONEY HE'S WITHHELD.

REPUBLICAN SENATOR GARY NODLER OF JOPLIN.

AND NODLER SAYS THE GOVERNOR IS ONLY MAKING THE ECONOMIC SITUATION IN THE STATE WORSE BY CONTINUING TO WITHHOLD THE ALMOST 200 MILLION DOLLARS FROM PUBLIC SCHOOLS, WHICH WOULD PUMP THAT MONEY BACK INTO THE ECONOMY.

THE GOVERNOR SAYS THERE ARE SEVERAL REASONS HE CAN'T RELEASE THE MONEY HE'S WITHHELD FROM SCHOOLS: HE ARGUES MEDICAID COSTS ARE GOING UP, THE STATE HAS TO PREPARE FOR THE IMPACT OF THE FEDERAL TAX CUTS AND LAWMAKERS FAILED TO PASS ANY OF THE COST CONTAINMENT MEASURES THE GOVERNOR RECOMMENDED.

I'M MISSY SHELTON FOR K-S-M-U NEWS.