Indiana budget deal boosts school funding, construction

Indiana Gov. Eric Holcomb delivers his State of the State address virtually, Tuesday, Jan. 19, 2021, in Indianapolis. (AP Photo/Darron Cummings)

INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — A new Indiana state budget awash in federal coronavirus relief money will give a sizeable funding boost to public schools while also paying for numerous economic grant programs and construction projects.

The state budget deal announced Tuesday by Republican Gov. Eric Holcomb and GOP legislative leaders will boost school funding by about 4.5% each of the next two years. That is more than double what budget writers proposed earlier this month before new projections showed state tax collections are expected to bounce back stronger than expected from the pandemic recession.

Other provisions in the budget partially direct the spending of $3 billion in federal relief funding.