|Week 2 Recap
Senate Education unanimously approved the 2 bills on its agenda, both of which ASBA supports as well. SB 1048 creates a system to discipline and track noncertificated employees in both district and charter schools that are found guilty of immoral or unprofessional conduct. SB 1060 adds about $55M in new funding towards special education, through a $5M appropriation to the Extraordinary Needs Fund and an increase to the Group B weights for certain diagnoses. See the links to the right for a preview of what we’ll hear in both chambers next week.
Legislative Budget Forecast Update
The Legislature’s Finance Advisory Committee (FAC) met this week to report its quarterly update of state revenue collections. Overall, revenue has grown faster than anticipated in the current fiscal year. Tax revenue growth in all categories has been fairly strong. The revenue estimate for FY2021 was revised upward, and JLBC now estimates that up to $300M will be available for permanent spending increases or tax issues, even after accouting for the final installment of teacher pay, and $685M will be available for “one-time” expenditures. This is a total of $985M projected surplus. It seems there is broad consensus in various budget proposals to use about $135M of that amount to fully restore District Additional Assistance, which ASBA strongly supports. Other issues that were considered one-time in the FY2020 budget, such as gifted funding, would count against those totals, so we will see a lot of competition between various Legislators’ priorities for those dollars.
State Board of Education
On Monday, the State Board of Education will hold a regular meeting, though the meeting will take place in Yuma! Hopefully you can make it over there if that’s your neck of the woods. Click here to see the agenda and materials for Monday’s meeting.
Register for Advocacy Day!
Registration is open for the event formerly known as Lobby Day. Advocacy Day 2020 will have a special focus on issues faced by remote and rural school districts, and an intimate conversation with Senate President Karen Fann.
Registration is FREE and open to board members, superintendents, and others who want to sharpen their advocacy skills.