COLUMBIA - School districts are having conversations with legislators about their budgets after Greitens unveiled his spending plan.
Greitens' proposal would provide $92 million in school transportation aid. It was presented as a $2 million increase for transportation costs, but critics say that number is based on manipulated data and it's actually $13 million less than the legislature approved last year.
Michelle Baumstark, Columbia Public Schools spokeswoman, said transportation is an area that continues to be cut as funds are reallocated.
"This is especially challenging for a school district like Columbia because we cover 300 square miles and transportation is required," she said.
She said CPS currently spends more than $12 million and only gets reimbursed about $2 million.
"The shortfall requires us to pay for transportation from the operating fund. The state has a law that requires 75 percent funding, but we receive about 18 percent," Baumstark said.
Originally public schools were budgeted to get $105 million in state transportation aid in the 2018 fiscal year. Greitens cut $15 million of that when he signed the budget last summer.
Steve Combs, Harrisburg Schools superintendent, said cutting money from public schools "makes no sense."
"He is taking away money from our greatest asset: our children. We have to bus our kids to school," he said.
The House Budget Committee serves as the starting point for state budget bills and could change or ignore the governor's recommendation for school transportation.