Gov. Bill Ritter's former budget director says he made a mistake when he rejected a proposal from the state education department to continue subsidized breakfasts for low-income children.
Todd Saliman, who is now serving as an adviser to Gov. John Hickenlooper, said Tuesday he will resubmit the request when lawmakers take up budget cuts in February.
Saliman said the budget request didn't meet budget requirements, but he should have given it more consideration.
Democrats criticized Republicans for voting against funding to continue free breakfasts.
Republicans say they'll reconsider their decision if the department can justify the request.
Funding is set to run out in March. After that, low-income students will be charged 30 cents a meal.
District 51 Director of Communications, Jeff Kirtland, told us that they are looking into solutions should the funding stop, but since they are dependent on the state government for funding, they don't have a lot of options. They have received a lot of phone calls pledging support, but at this point, are still in the beginning phases of investigating solutions.
Unfortunately for needy students, most charitable organizations, at least locally, are unprepared for providing breakfasts every morning for kids. Mike Berry, executive director of Kids Aid told us that he knew of teachers bringing cereal and granola bars to school to make sure kids had access to breakfast.
It is hard to argue that having a good breakfast is essential for students in a learning environment and there is a debate as to whether the responsibility ultimately resides with the parents. Some families may just not able to afford those meals and that is why the program existed in the first place.