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Spenser Heaps, Deseret News
FILE - Utah State Sen. Lincoln Fillmore, R-South Jordan, speaks at a public hearing at the Utah State Board of Education in Salt Lake City on Tuesday, July 26, 2016. The Utah Senate has approved a bill sponsored by Fillmore that sends one-third of new education spending each year toward the state's poorest school districts.

SALT LAKE CITY — The Utah Senate has approved a bill that sends one-third of new education spending each year toward the state's poorest school districts.

Bill sponsor Sen. Lincoln Fillmore, R-South Jordan, said SB80 is needed to help poorer school districts that aren't able to bring in enough money through property taxes to adequately fund education.

Sen. Jim Dabakis, D-Salt Lake City, spoke out against the proposal, saying that making a decision about which schools should get extra funding should be based on more than just zip codes.

Dabakis said there are inner-city students all over the state who could get money taken away if the plan is approved.

Other critics have noted that Utah already sends extra money to poorer districts that don't raise as much money through property taxes.

The measure now advances to the House for debate.