EdBuild contract made public but critics still concerned about t - WLOX.com - The News for South Mississippi

EdBuild contract made public but critics still concerned about transparency

Source: WLBT Source: WLBT
JACKSON, MS (Mississippi News Now) -

The contract between the legislature and the education consulting firm is now public, but it hasn't calmed the concerns of those who think only a few lawmakers will try to make the final decisions.

Now that the EdBuild contract is public, Senate Pro Tempore Terry Burton maintains they originally thought keeping it confidential was legal.

"I'm sorry that this got caught up in that transparency questions," Burton noted. "Because it was never about secrecy. It was never about not knowing. It was about a policy that's been in place for decades that we need to change."

Speaking up for transparency, Attorney General Jim Hood had this message Monday.

"Make the legislature have everything open," said Hood. "Those conference committees are where things are done. That's where our budgets are made. That's peoples business."

The contract itself, doesn't have many details. It does include a timeline that ends next summer. As far as costs, leaders had already revealed the state would pay half of the $250,000. But it's still unclear exactly who's paying the other half. The contract shows that will be paid in installments after the non-profit completes each phase of work.

Only $25,000 has been paid out so far.

Representative Jay Hughes says the public should be more concerned with what's not included. But groups like the The Parent's Campaign are now questioning the transparency of the whole process, saying they hope lawmakers will vote down any attempt to change the funding formula next session.

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