The budget chairs are making great progress on the budget. Much of the PreK-12 budget has been decided and closed out. This includes a compromise on a blended FEFP meaning some of the catagoricals will be collapsed into the Base Student Allocation (seen in the House proposal) but not all of them that were in the original proposal. In addition, FRS decisions that were made include extending DROP for all classes from 60 months to 96 months and instructional personnel from 96 to 120 months. This was one of our platform items and we appreciate Rep. Leek and Sen. Broxson including these extensions.
Once all language has been finalized and the budget has been laid on the table, the legislature must wait the mandatory 72 hour cooling off period before they can vote on the budget. In the coming weeks, our team at GrayRobinson will work to put together a comprehensive budget report that will be shared with all of you.
HERE you will find the legislative bill tracker supplied to us by our team at GrayRobinson. All of the bills we are tracking are listed on the report in numerical order. Bills that align to our platform are highlighted in yellow. A few of the bills to highlight:
- HB 1259 Education by Rep. Canady passed off the House floor on Wednesday. This bill requires the sharing of capital outlay to charter schools with a glide path over the next 5 years as to the percentage to be shared. The bill was sent to the Senate in messages. SB 1328 by Sen. Hudson, the companion bill, is scheduled to be heard on the Senate floor on Wednesday.
- HB 1537 Education by Rep. Rizo has passed off the House floor and been sent to the Senate. This bill covers a variety of education topics including making changes to the school grading formula for elementary schools, shifting to professional learning for teachers, and provides students with the opportunity to use the Classical Learning Test scores to meet Bright Futures requirements. It also includes an amendment by Rep. Massullo that sets concordant scores for this year’s graduating seniors at last year’s scores for ELA and modifies them slightly for Algebra I EOC. SB 1430 by Sen. Avila, the companion bill, is set to be heard on the Senate floor on Tuesday.
- SB 986 Education by Sen. Burgess was scheduled to be heard in the Senate on Friday but was temporarily postponed. This bill is focused on charter schools and includes a provision that would allow unrestricted current and capital assets to be shared with another charter school within its network as long as it’s in the state. This would be considered an unforgiveable 5 year loan that must be paid back. The bill is back on the calendar for Monday. The House companion, HB 443 by Rep. Valdes, passed the House and has been sent to the Senate.