Do the dollars we spend on vacation really count? Most of us spending money on cheap trinkets and overpriced T-shirts don't believe they do — until we get the credit-card bills.
Similarly, it appears state lawmakers believe that the money earmarked for tax-credit programs don't really count, either. That might explain the ease with which they doubled the amount of tax credits earmarked for corporate contributions to education.
The Educational Improvement Tax Credit program will grow from $75 million to $100 million, and an additional $50 million in credits will fund a new program targeted to students in the lowest-performing public schools. Under the current EITC program, corporations make contributions to organizations that provide scholarships to students or that provide educational programs to schools. Corporations then get tax credits for those contributions.
Proponents of the tax credits say they save public education dollars, because businesses are picking up the tab for students to attend private schools. The Commonwealth Foundation even describes the EITC program as "funded through voluntary contributions from businesses."