KBOI 2News fact-checks anti-Luna TV ad

KBOI 2News fact-checks anti-Luna TV ad
BOISE, Idaho (KBOI) -- One of the hottest state issues on the ballot this November will be whether or not voters decide to repeal Superintendent of Public Instruction Tom Luna's "Students Come First" education policy.

And as the election draws closer, opponents of the Luna laws are running a statewide TV commercial that says the Idaho Legislature failed to fully fund the high school laptop computer program, so property taxes could increase.

But hold on, the pro-Luna group, Yes to Idaho Education, says that's flat out false. Luna supporters say the legislature did indeed fully fund the laptops by making it a statutory requirement within the public schools budget.

So who is right?

We asked David Adler, director of the non-partisan Andrus Center for Public Policy.

"The reality is that the legislature has funded the laptops just as the legislature has funded other programs, salaries, benefits, buses," Adler said. "The money's there."

The anti-Luna group, Vote No On Props 1, 2 and 3, also says in its television ad that the "Students Come First" education policy replaces teachers with computers, by requiring taxpayers to fund laptops for high school students.

On this issue, Adler says the commercial makes a valid point: money used to buy laptops could be used to hire more teachers.

"That's right, on that part, I think the teachers have a good argument," Adler told KBOI 2News. "Ironically, it's one of their stronger arguments, and certainly it's one for voters to consider, whether they want money spent on laptops or whether they prefer to have those monies go for teacher salaries and other items."