Cleansing Fire

Defending Truth and Tradition in the Roman Catholic Church

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More on Public Policy

February 4th, 2011, Promulgated by Ben Anderson

I received this email alert today from the New York State Catholic Conference regarding Catholic Schools (yet another issue not addressed by the DOR’s upcoming Public Policy Week).

Cuomo’s Budget Unfair to Catholic Schools

TAKE ACTION

Governor Cuomo’s proposed budget treats public schools far better than it treats religious and independent schools. He proposes cutting reimbursement to religious and independent schools by 8 percent while the proposed cut to public schools is only 7 percent. In addition, public schools are getting $70 million in reimbursement for the MTA payroll tax while our schools receive nothing. (That tax affects schools located in the 12 counties in and around New York City.) Also, the Governor proposes $500 million in new funding to reward public schools for academic improvement and administrative efficiencies.

At the same time, the Governor ignores the fact that the state is delinquent on $260 million in reimbursement to religious and independent schools for mandates carried out by schools dating as far back as the 2002-03 school year. We simply cannot allow this injustice to stand. Your action is needed urgently and immediately to help stop these proposed cuts and to ensure that our schools are treated equitably and receive the funding to which they are entitled.

Simply click the Take Action link to get a prewritten, fully editable message. Fill in your name and address in the form and send it off. Our system will find your correct state Senator and Assembly member based on your home address.

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7 Responses to “More on Public Policy”

  1. avatar Anonymous says:

    Why should the tax payers fund any part of private school education especially religious based education? As a church going Catholic with school aged children I have problems knowing that my tax dollars are going to Catholic Schools. My wife and I are products of Catholic Grammar and High School however we choose to send our kids to public schools.

  2. avatar Ben Anderson says:

    I don’t necessarily disagree w/ you anon, but

    Why should the tax payers fund any part of private school education

    and why should tax payers be forced to pay into public schools – especially when they have children that aren’t utilizing those schools?

  3. avatar Anonymous says:

    You do make a good point but a good school district can and does improve the value of all the homes with in the district. So paying for public education where the school district is well run and results in well educated children helps all home owners with the value of their property.

  4. avatar Ben Anderson says:

    paying for public education where the school district is well run and results in well educated children helps all home owners with the value of their property.

    there’s no possible way that evens out, anon. Besides, if the rules were the same for all districts, this argument goes away anyhow.

  5. avatar Jim R says:

    Ben,

    I believe the Church should not touch government money. Doing so gives the government rights and a say in the Church. Plus, the Church becomes dependent on the money, further eroding its ability to preach the Gospel. Whether the government should give money to the Church is another issue. I’m less concerned about that side of the argument.

    As to public education, the government pretty much has the right to spend money as it sees fit. (Yes, there are some limits, but generally….) We could debate the utility, prudence and efficacy of public education (over all I believe it’s been a good for society) but I think it’s pretty clear it is one area of spending that the government can decide on.

  6. avatar Ben Anderson says:

    Jim R,
    I don’t necessarily agree w/ you, but I respect that opinion. If everyone is getting money from the gov’t, it seems to make sense the Catholic Church should as well. I agree, though, that it does put the Church in an odd position. It’s certainly a complex matter. I would assume, then, since you are opposed to the Church accepting money from the gov’t, that you would not sign this petition?

  7. avatar Jim R says:

    The petition that opened says:
    “2011 Public Policy Weekend—Diocese of Rochester
    Working Out of Poverty: Transportation and Child Care for Low-Income Workers
    We understand that difficult decisions need to be made regarding the 2011-2012 New York State budget.
    We, the undersigned, urge the Governor, the Assembly, and the Senate to give priority to programs that preserve and promote employment, with special attention to subsidies for child care and transportation for low-income workers.”

    While I wouldn’t sign it (for reasons I won’t go into here), I don’t see what it has to do with the Church accepting money from the state. True, the Church has historically provided for the poor, but having the government support the poor seems to me to have little to do with what the Church does. It certainly has nothing to do with the Church accepting money from the state – unless it is a disguised and unstated plea for money for catholic causes, e.g., Catholic Charities.

    My issue is the state operates under different pressures than the Church does. Often those pressures push the state to support or promote activities that are inimical to what the Church promotes. Once the Church takes state money, it has to dance to the state’s tune far too often. Too often the Church sells out its integrity for “filthy lucre.”

    One need only look at the dependency of healthcare on state and federal programs to see Catholic healthcare tie itself in knots to keep the money and sell the sick, unborn and elderly down the highway. In Tucson they have boasted on NCR that “nothing” has changed. Duh! The problem also affects education, adoption, counseling, etc.

    Far better to retain our integrity and forgo the money. The Daughters of Charity (aka in healthcare as the “Daughters of Money”)are famous for the comment: “No money; no mission.” Given their track record (and the gyrations they are famous for!) on abortion, sterilization, etc., the irony of the comment and perniciousness of mammon is evident.

    I agree it is a complicated matter. I have simply come down on the side that we must be monetarily independent to be truly independent in the propagation of the faith.


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