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Feb. 1 - The Obama administration asked Congress to increase education spending by about 7.5 percent for fiscal year 2011 for the restructuring of a test score-based rating system established under the No Child Left Behind Act of 2001. As a part of this initiative, the administration plans to substitute the Adequate Yearly Progress (AYP) rating system, which gives public schools a pass-fail achievement rating, with a fairer method for evaluating academic development. Specifically, the $3.5-billion budget increase will fund intervention in failing schools, teacher employment and training programs and the establishment of charter schools. The new $49.7-billion budget will also establish a third Race to the Top initiative, a competitive program that distributes grants to state education system for school improvement.
Feb. 14 - The Wyoming House of Representatives voted to introduce a bill spearheaded by Governor Dave Freudenthal (D-Wyo.) that establishes a tax on wind power production to create more revenue for the state. Freudenthal asserted that the wind energy industry deserves no special tax exemptions and that such a proposal could help diversify the state's tax base. Proposal supporters argued the tax could bring about $11.5 million yearly to the large wind power industry, which is already subsidized by the federal government. This tax goes against most state initiatives designed to increase financial incentives for "green energy" production. The head of the American Wind Energy Association, Denise Bode, said the tax may limit employment opportunities statewide.
Rose Wynn. I love piña coladas, getting caught in the rain and the ladies of the Blair Pom Squad. More »