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Update: Reclaim Idaho Responds to Questions About Education Initiative

By • June 7, 2022

Luke Mayville, a co-founder of Reclaim Idaho, has responded to several questions Idaho Dispatch had about the ballot initiative the group is fighting for in 2022.

One question Idaho Dispatch had for Mayville was on the certification of the signatures Reclaim had sent in for verification. The group had submitted over 97,000 signatures for verification.

Here is what Mayville told Idaho Dispatch about the verification process and where it currently stands,

The deadline for the clerks to verify our petitions is not until the end of June. After that, we have until July 8th to submit all verified petitions to the Idaho Secretary of State for their final review. By mid July, the Secretary of State will officially determine whether the initiative will appear on the ballot.

According to Mayville’s statement, the process could take another month before an official announcement is made. Reclaim got more signatures than would be required, which is expected as some signatures will be disqualified.

Idaho Dispatch also asked Mayville what impact on the ballot initiative, if any, he thought the current state of the economy, with higher prices and inflation, may have on voters’ minds when they go to the ballot box in November.

Mayville responded to Idaho Dispatch’s question by saying,

On average, a teacher in Idaho earns $27,000 less than in Washington, $16,000 less than in Oregon, and $8,000 less than in Wyoming. Idaho is dead last of 50 states in wages for support staff like reading specialists and custodians. Idaho is not paying competitive salaries and wages, and so we’re facing a crisis when it comes to recruiting and retaining qualified educators. Record-breaking inflation only makes this problem more severe, because inflation is basically a pay cut for every educator. When we talked to tens of thousands of Idaho voters during our signature drive, most voters agreed that we need to act now to support our teachers and staff.

Finally, Idaho Dispatch asked Mayville if he had any other comments he wished to add, such as how he felt about Idaho’s current state of education or how the volunteers did in gathering signatures. Here is what Mayville said,

Idaho is dead last of 50 states in funding for public schools. This has been a problem in Idaho for years. Because of the hard work of volunteers in every region of the state, the voters now have a chance to do something about it. More funding won’t solve every single problem, but the vast majority of Idaho voters agree that more funding is necessary to recruit qualified teachers and staff.

And most Idaho voters agree that more funding is necessary to provide our kids with strong programs, including programs in fields like welding, carpentry, and ag science–the types of programs that give students a chance to make a living when they graduate.

Idaho Dispatch will follow up on this issue again after the official announcement has been made by the Secretary of State’s office.

The original article Idaho Dispatch wrote on June 4 is below.

Reclaim Idaho said last month it had turned in more than enough signatures to get its education initiative on the ballot in November.

On May 2, Reclaim Idaho said they had gathered more than 97,000 signatures to turn in for verification. The group posted the following message on Twitter,

We did it! With nearly 97K signatures submitted, we’re confident that the Quality Education Act will appear on the ballot!

This means that voters will have a chance to increase K-12 funding by $323 million annually—with no new taxes on anyone making under $250K a year. #idpol

No official announcement has been made on whether or not the signatures Reclaim gathered have had enough verified to put their education initiative on the ballot officially. Idaho Dispatch reached out to the Secretary of State’s office for an answer, but we have not yet received one.

To get the initiative on the ballot, Reclaim had to gather 6% of registered voters from at least 18 of the state’s 35 legislative districts. Groups will often gather more than the necessary amount because signatures can be tossed out for various reasons.

Some individuals signing may give an incorrect or incomplete address, and those signatures are then invalidated.

We asked Reclaim co-founder Luke Mayville if he knew whether or not the signatures had been verified. Mayville responded to Idaho Dispatch initially by asking if it was too late to answer some of the questions we had sent him. We informed him there was still time but have not heard back from him yet.

Reclaims “Quality Education Act” would raise the tax rate on those making more than $250,000 a year ($500,000 for a couple) and raise the corporate tax rate from 6.5% to 8%. Reclaim estimates that approximately $323 million will be raised for education through the tax increases.

The group also says on its website that none of the increase would go to administrative costs.

One of the questions Idaho Dispatch asked Mayville was whether he thought the current state of the economy would have any impact on their effort to pass the initiative. If Mayville responds to our original questions, we will update the article.

Those opposed to the initiative say it is not time to raise taxes on Idahoans and that spending more money on education will not yield better results.

One online commenter posted a reply to Reclaim’s tweet from May 2 saying,

The irony of this, of course, is that those making more than $250k a year are already the ones paying for the bulk of the taxes and their kids don’t even attend them. Way to stick it to the man!

What do you think of Reclaim Idaho’s education initiative? Do you support it or oppose it?

Let us know what you think in the comments below.

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Tags: Education, Luke Mayville, Quality Education Act, Reclaim Idaho

19 thoughts on “Update: Reclaim Idaho Responds to Questions About Education Initiative

  1. Yet another left-leaning org trying to sound conservative. Here’s to hoping that common sense Idahoans will reject yet another attempt to commieIdaho.

    1. Yes!! Agree, do not throw money at this institution that is proven to be anti-American, anti-family and indoctrinating the children with Marxism and sexualizing them with materials that are NOT age appropriate in curriculum and school libraries.

    2. Parents need to bear the brunt of their child’s education costs. thatmwould cause parents to be aware of their child’s results in school. The unionized teachers are too costly for their job performance. In fact why are government employees allowed in a right to work state?

    3. Agree. “Public Education” is THE main avenue for brainwashing our children and training them to be good little, lightly educated, useful-idiot worker bees.

      They know that saying “don’t you want your child to get a good education?” will get many parents to sign on. The problem lies in the difference between what normal people regard as a good education and what the Left considers a good education (ie., an actual fact-based and time-tested education VS manipulation, brainwashing, and sexualization).

      Fight them now or pay the price later. NO funding for education until all of the degenerate commies and globalist types are removed at every level.

  2. If funding for education was a barometer with teeth, every inner city school program would be the Ivy League. Just a leftist pushing his indoctrination centers. You cant reclaim something you never had. If Idaho doesnt start pushing back against the ballot referenda, it’s going to get sunk.

    1. When they say reclaim, they mean for nature to reclaim the land after all the humans starve to death. This is the end goal of all communist movements. The useful idiots like this guy may not be aware of it though…

    2. Exactly! The public school system has a lot to prove they are not indoctrinating our children. They cannot be trusted! For instance in their surveys to glean from your children personal information such as do your parents have guns, go to church etc they must opt out.
      Easy to say the child never brought home the noice and so they are automatically opted in. That needs to be changed to opting in! See how slimy they are.

  3. Zero Support!
    Reclaim Idaho needs to go away.

    The school system can remedied by way of competition.
    Fully funded School Vouchers for Home Schooling, Charter and Private Schools will fix the problems quite quickly through Competition to create a better learning environment and better overall education.

    Reclaim Idaho hopes throwing more money on a Leftist fire will fix things….NOT!!!

    1. Agree, ZERO support. I’d like to see those signatures get verified. Do you think the Sec of State will do that? They say they will but can you even trust them. They claim no fishy stuff happened at 2020 elections in all of Idaho. Yeah.
      Even our local election was fouled by Phil McGrane not rotating the names on the ballots and Mike Hon losing by what was it , 36 votes. Mr. McGrane did not rectify!

  4. I work for the schools and this affects me and I still won’t vote for it. The county just raised our property assessments by double, my taxes are about to increase and you want to tax more?
    Where the hell is the money going that I’m already paying? I paid less in property tax in WA!!! Home value was the same!!!

  5. The root of the problem is not in more taxes but a better distribution of the money we now spend on education. How about getting rid of about half of the administrators jobs which suck up much of the education budget. How about getting the 170 some thousand people on Medicaid who do not qualify off the rolls. How about we stop giving $50 million in tax breaks to companies like Facebook. How about getting rid of all the federal rules imposed on our health districts that suck up millions in county tax dollars. How about taking the Tax Exempt status away from St. Luke’s whose buildings sit on some of the most expensive property in the state and paid their chief executive $18 million in the last two years and received hundreds of millions in cares money. Before we tax more how about looking where and how we are spending our money.

  6. Mayville didn’t answer specific questions but instead gave political answers as if he is running for office. If their goal is to help put more money into teachers pockets, how about they receive compensation based on performance which is set and evaluated by all the school’s parents? Better yet, instead of favoring government schools, because they are no longer public schools controlled by We the People, how about we incentivize higher learning, skills and classic thought through mentor ship with an emphasis on teaching kids how to think not what to think, by funding all education equally, including home school and charters, with a voucher system. This allows parents to choose the best education available directly for their child. Empowering parents snd children to be one critically minded and independent people, I wonder if this what this organization wants to reclaim here in Idaho? Doubt it.

  7. The major problem with all these kinds of legislation is that the money never ends up going to teachers. Instead, they raise the pay of the administrators and hire more specialists and implement more before- and after-school programs. Then they come around AGAIN the next election cycle and claim they still need more money for teachers! It’s a complete SCAM.

    The problem with education has and always be parental involvement. This has been shown to be the #1 correlating factor in study after study. Education has never gotten better simply by throwing money at the problem – all it does is make special interest groups like book sellers, radical indoctrination groups, and NEA unions richer. If you want to increase the quality of education, the parents need to be involved. It’s that simple.

  8. It has been shown time and time again that education funding is not an indicator of quality. It is possible to achieve quality for a lot less money. Under the right conditions many teachers will be willing to work for less. It is not right to compare salaries with Oregon and Washington, but to compare them with what the person could make right here with the same education doing other work. Education has always been way over priced. The NEA has shown little concern about achievement.

  9. The previous comment by Tea Party Bob hit the nail squarely on the head. If we would correct the spending errors that now exist there would be no difficulty meeting education needs in Idaho. If this one gets on the ballot it’s a definite NO vote, and we will be faced by another storm of incorrect and improper information to make sure we can successfully vote it down. Bottom line is that it shouldn’t even make the ballot.

  10. Even the teachers all know that the administrative costs and salaries are bloated by far. Education costs are riding the waves of government over prints of currency and bank borrowing that rewards the over pricing as a signal to inflate them. There is so much hot air in education pricing (like most everything) that true price discovery is not possible. So now these vampires come along to turn the whole problem into a weapon to use as a tax hammer to use against Idahoans when inflation is growing by the minute.

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