(The Center Square) – Republicans at the Wisconsin Capitol say there’s $20 million sitting on Gov. Tony Evers desk available to schools that are actually open.

A group of Republicans on Monday asked the governor to send the money to schools across the state that are offering in-person classes.

“They have had to have extra PPE, extra custodial staff, extra nurses, they’ve rented outside classrooms,” Rep. Cindi Duchow, R-Town of Delafield, said about Kettle-Moraine schools in her district. “They have spent over $2 million to put their kids in the classrooms, face to face, so they can have the education they deserve.”

Duchow said Kettle-Moraine has received just $330,000 in coronavirus relief money since the outbreak began. She said Milwaukee Public Schools, which have been closed since last March have received more than $2 million. Other lawmakers say the numbers are similar for their local schools.

The $20 million is part of nearly $100 million in discretionary dollars that were part of Wisconsin’s haul from the second round of federal coronavirus relief from back in December.

Rep. Mark Born, R-Beaver Dam, said there is no reason not to send that money to schools that have kids attending in-person classes.

“The need right now for the additional financial burden is for the districts that are in-person,” Born explained. “[Gov. Evers] has discretionary money available, and we’re just saying ‘Please use it.’.”

This is not the first time that Republicans in the Wisconsin legislature have looked to send more money to schools offering in-person classes. The legislature last month earmarked nearly $70 million for in-person schools. But that was just a fraction of the more than $600 million in federal Title One money that went to closed schools in Milwaukee and Madison.

Reposted from The Center Square with permission.

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