Extending the “Eat for Education” city meals tax is getting little apparent support on Roanoke City Council, but one of the candidates for mayor believes some reduced form remains needed to attract — and keep — qualified teachers. Sam Rasoul is challenging Mayor David Bowers, and he says Roanoke students will suffer the consequences if a reliable income source is removed. WFIR’s Evan Jones has the story.[audio:http://wfirnews.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/01/01-26-Rasoul-Wrap1-WEB.mp3|titles=01-26 Rasoul Wrap1-WEB]
(Continue reading for more information and Rasoul’s extended comments on Eat for Education)
The “Eat for Education” 2% meals tax increase was implemented two years ago to help Roanoke City Schools handle sudden and significant reductions in state funding. The city’s SOL scores, school accreditation and graduation rates have all improved since then, and school officials say this additional funding was a key component in making those achievements possible.
The additional meals tax is set to expire June 30. The Roanoke NAACP has called for some sort of renewal, but there appears to be little if any support for it on City Council. Council members say keeping any form of “Eat for Education” tax would break a promise they made with taxpayers.
Here are Rasoul’s extended comments on Eat for Education:[audio:http://wfirnews.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/01/01-26-Rasoul-Extended-WEB1.mp3|titles=01-26 Rasoul Extended-WEB]