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Politics

Sununu Stands By Targeted Funding for Full-Day Kindergarten

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Paige Sutherland/NHPR
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Gov. Chris Sununu told House and Senate Finance Committee members that his budget propsosal is fiscally conservative yet addresses the state's concerns.

Gov. Chris Sununu presented his $12 billion, 2-year state spending proposal to House and Senate budget writers for the first time Tuesday.

Asked by lawmakers what his budget priorities were, Sununu said he was focused on helping the state’s young people.

He pointed to his proposals to increase funding for child protection services, substance abuse, the community college system, charter schools and full-day kindergarten.

Currently the state provides districts with half the cost of running a full -day kindergarten program. Under Sununu’s proposal, needy communities would be given additional money.

Check out NHPR's earlier coverage on this topic

When one lawmaker said this idea wasn’t equitable, Sununu disagreed.

“Let’s not let great be the enemy of the good," Sununu told budget writers. "Let’s not do away a program because we can’t do it 100 percent maybe for every single town. A lot of towns that have the means already have programs implemented.”

Sununu’s kindergarten proposal calls for $18 million over the next two years, which is about $8 million shy of what it would cost to fully fund full-day kindergarten statewide.

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