Achieving Transformative Legislative Change for Jewish Area’s Day Schools

The Jewish Link

January 29, 2015

SAR Academy’s 46th Anniversary Dinner, held recently at SAR High School was filled with warmth and tremendous school pride.  Emotions ran high as each honoree took center stage while videos highlighted his or her achievements, and Rabbi Binyamin Krauss (‘84), principal,  and Rabbi Tully Harcsztark, principal, SAR High School, addressed the audience with words of praise and gratitude for their accomplishments. The dinner boasted an unprecedented number of attendees and raised $3.7mil. This was no coincidence — this year, in addition to honoring two SAR faculty members and an SAR parent, the school chose to honor SAR’s 20 alumni who served in the IDF this past summer during Operation Protective Edge.

Earlier this month, Governor Andrew Cuomo presented his annual State of the State address and his 2015 Executive Budget proposal. For the first time ever, the governor included the Education Investment Tax Credit (EITC) in his Executive Budget, allocating $100 million for the EITC fund and capping the individual income level for recipients at $250,000. If EITC is enacted, it could provide millions of dollars in scholarships to the Jewish community’s middle-income families.

Governor Cuomo’s announcement came on the heels of the State Senate’s passage of EITC as a stand-alone bill. The Senate has consistently passed EITC each session for the last few years, but the legislation has gained little traction. “By including EITC in his Executive Budget, Gov. Cuomo sends a strong signal that he wants the bill to pass,” said Jake Adler, New York Policy Director for OU Advocacy-Teach NYS. “With the passage of EITC by the Senate and inclusion in the Governor’s budget proposal, EITC is even closer to passing than ever before.”

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