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GOVERNMENT RELATIONS


Alliance Legislative Report 98-29

Distributed via Email: November 8, 2013

VETO SESSION WRAPS UP

The Illinois General Assembly completed work this week in the Fall Veto Session, though no significant education-related legislation was considered. A supplemental appropriation bill was approved with some minor funding changes for the Illinois State Board of Education (ISBE). Conversations (and rumors) were abundant regarding pension reform, though no legislation emerged and no committee meetings were held to consider proposals. Same sex marriage legislation was considered, but no votes were taken regarding corporate tax breaks or gun control/concealed carry provisions.

Though the next scheduled legislative session dates are not until January, lawmakers could be called back to the Capitol before that if there is agreement on a pension reform proposal. Many insiders speculate that this could happen in the first two weeks of December.

LEGISLATIVE ACTION THIS WEEK

HB 209 ( Madigan, D-Chicago) contained supplemental appropriations for various State agencies and programs, including: $150,000 for Chicago Public Schools’ (CPS) Columbia Explorers Elementary Academy; $25,000 for Round Lake Area SD 116; $175,000 for St. Gabriel Catholic School for boilers;$25,000 for CPS’ John Hope Collegiate Preparatory High School; and $38,461 for CPS’ Tom Drummond Elementary School. The bill was approved by both chambers and will be sent to the Governor for his consideration.

HB 1002 (Chapa La Via, D-Aurora) was amended in the Senate by Senator James Clayborne (D-East St. Louis) with a provision for Lebanon CUSD #9 to extend its debt limit, allowing the district to continue issuing bonds and to collect receipts from a previously adopted   referendum for a new school. The bill was approved by the Senate and was sent to the House of Representatives for consideration.

SB 10 ( Steans, D-Chicago) will allow for same-sex marriage. The bill was approved by the House of Representatives and was sent to the Governor for his consideration.

SB 578 (Dillard, R-Hinsdale) contains the provisions on updating the teacher/administrator licensure requirements. For a full summary, please go to the Illinois Principals’ Association website ( Licensure Bill). The bill was approved by both chambers and will be sent to the Governor for his consideration.

SB 1595 ( Haine, D-Alton) was amended in the House by Representative Jerry Costello (D-Belleville) to allow Chester CUSD #139 to opt out of a mandate regarding the “green building” rating system that has delayed construction of a new elementary school. The bill was approved by both chambers and will be sent to the Governor for his consideration.

SB 1845 ( Mulroe, D-Chicago) was amended with language adjusting dates in the alternative teacher certification provisions. The bill was approved by both chambers and will be sent to the Governor for his consideration.

SB 2071 (Harris III, D-Flossmoor) extends the expiration date for the Tax Increment Financing districts for the Village of Germantown, Gibson City, the Village of Washington Park, and the City of Harvey. The bill was approved by both chambers and will be sent to the Governor.

EDUCATION FUNDING ADVISORY COMMITTEE MEETS AGAIN

The Senate’s panel charged with looking for fixes to the state school funding formula to increase distribution equity, met in Bloomington on Monday. The Education Funding Advisory Committee which was created in Senate Resolution 431 adopted in July, is co-chaired by Senator Andy Manar (D-Bunker Hill) and Senator David Luechtefeld (R- Okawville).

According to an ISBE document, the following formula characteristics are being discussed by the committee:

Scalable/Flexible : The formula should distribute resources fairly and logically under higher, lower, or stable revenues.

Predictable: The formula should provide predictable funding results to school districts.

Equalization : The formula should maximize equalization so that those districts with the least amount of local resources get the most state funding.

Student Weights : The model should provide greater weights for specific student groups, such as, at-risk, English language learners, and special education. The committee is also considering whether to include in this category gifted education (but requiring such to provide advanced placement, dual enrollment, etc.)

School Level Accountability: This would require school districts to identify school level spending. The committee is considering whether to only require reporting, or to require specific spending levels per school.

Condensed Funding Stream: The committee is considering whether the formula should consolidate multiple budget line items into one funding stream, allowing school districts to flexibly apply funding to maximize student outcomes while protecting at-risk student populations. Then, should anything be outside of the formula, such as: transportation, capital, special education?

Funding Level Changes: The committee is considering whether revenues should be increased, decreased, or held stable.

Encourage Consolidation: The committee is considering whether the formula should be used to encourage consolidation. “At a minimum”, should the formula be structured to avoid subsidizing separate elementary and high school districts? Should the law be amended to equalize tax rates to encourage consolidation?

Minimum Funding:  The committee is considering whether school districts should receive a minimum level of funding from the State. If not, can unfunded districts be relieved of certain mandates?

PTELL Adjustment: The committee is considering whether education funding should continue to support tax subsidies, such as the Property Tax Extension Limitation Law supplemental funding provision.

The funding committee will next meet on Monday, December 2, at the Proviso Math and Science Academy in Forest Park. The House Appropriations – Elementary and Secondary Education Committee met this week also and discussed possible changes to the poverty grant distribution formula. No action was taken.

LEGISLATIVE TOPICS AT JOINT ANNUAL CONFERENCE

The Joint Annual Conference of the Illinois Association of School Boards, Illinois Association of School Administrators, and the Illinois Association of School Business Officials is set for November 22-24 in Chicago. As usual, a series of legislative-related panel discussions are on tap.

FRIDAY, NOVEMBER 22

1:30

 “The Long Road to Pension Reform” (Regency A, Hyatt Regency)

Panelists:
Senator Daniel Biss (D-9, Evanston)
Representative Darlene Senger (R-41, Naperville)
Mr. Richard Ingram, Executive Director, Teachers’ Retirement System
Dr. Brent Clark, Executive Director, Illinois Association of School Administrators

Moderator:
Mr. Ben Schwarm, Deputy Executive Director, Illinois Association of School Boards

“Generating Positive PR with the New State Report Card” ( Columbus E/F, Hyatt Regency)

Panelists:
Ms. Joyce Karon, Member, Illinois P-20 Council
Ms. Debra Strauss, Immediate Past President, Illinois PTA

SATURDAY, NOVEMBER 23

10:30

“Legislative Issues Impacting School Districts” (Regency C, Hyatt Regency)

Panelists:
Senator Jason Barickman (R-53, Champaign)
Senator Jennifer Bertino-Tarrant (D-49, Shorewood)
Representative Michelle Mussman (D-56, Schaumburg)
Representative Mike Fortner (R-49, West Chicago)

Moderator:
Dr. Calvin Jackson, Legislative Liaison, IASBO

“State Revenue” (Chicago 6, Sheraton)

Panelist:
Representative John Bradley (D-117, Marion)

Moderator:
Dr. Catherine M. Finger, Superintendent, Grayslake CHSD #127

1:30

“School Safety Update: Policies and Procedures Coming Your Way” (Regency B, Hyatt Regency)

Panelists:
Mr. Don Kauerauf, Chairman, Illinois Terrorism Task Force
Dr. Jeff Arnett, Chief Communications Officer, Barrington CUSD #220
Mr. George Reigle, Architect, Green & Associates

Moderator:
Ms. Susan Hilton, Director of Governmental Relations, IASB

“How to Write an Effective Resolution” ( Columbus K/L, Hyatt Regency)

Panelists:
Dr. Darryl Taylor, Superintendent, Lincoln ESD #156
Ms. Rosalyn Hathorn, Board Member, Lincoln ESD #156
Dr. Jeff Stawick, Superintendent, Tinley Park CCSD #146
Mr. Dean Casper, Board Member, Tinley Park CCSD #146

Moderators:
Mr. Jeffrey Cohn, Director of Field Services, IASB
Ms. Deanna Sullivan, Director of Governmental Relations, IASB

3:30

“Update: Advisory Committee on Education Funding” (Grand F, Hyatt Regency)

Panelists:
Senator Andy Manar (D-48, Bunker Hill)
Senator Sue Rezin (R-38, Morris)
Representative Will Davis (D-30, Hazel Crest)
Representative Robert Pritchard (R-70, Hinckley)

Moderator:
Dr. Calvin Jackson, Legislative Liaison, IASBO

“From School House to State House” (Regency B, Hyatt Regency)

Panelists:
Senator Pat McGuire (D-43, Joliet)
Representative Sandra Pihos (R-48, Glen Ellyn)
Representative Rita Mayfield (D-60, Waukegan)

Moderator:
Mr. Zach Messersmith, Assistant Director of Governmental Relations, IASB

“Charter Schools: A Balancing Act” ( Hong Kong, Hyatt Regency)

Panelists:
Ms. Jeanne Nowaczewski, Executive Director, Illinois Charter School Commission
Ms. Rosemary Swanson, Board Member, Wheaton-Warrenville CUSD #200
Mr. Ted Dabrowski, Illinois Policy Institute
Dr. Gary Niehaus, Superintendent, McLean County CUSD #5
Mr. Robert Leonard, Associate Superintendent for Business, Woodland CCSD #50

Moderator:
Ms. Deanna Sullivan, Director of Governmental Relations, IASB

This legislative report is written and edited by the lobbyists of the Illinois Association of School Boards to provide information to the members of the organizations that comprise the Statewide School Management Alliance.

Bill Text/Status: Illinois General Assembly www.ilga.gov


Alliance Legislative Reports are Cosponsored by IASB and:
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