NCSBA Legislative Update – June 5, 2020

NCSBA Legislative Update – June 5, 2020

This Week at the Legislature

Legislators continued to make progress on mini budget bills this week, not giving any sign of a wholesale bill being passed, as in recent years. HB 1071 appropriates funds for increased enrollment in public schools, with funds being transferred out of the School Bus Replacement Fund. HB 472 and SB 814 would also transfer funds out of the School Bus Replacement Fund to be appropriated for NC State University funds, NC A&T State University funds, and the NC Promise Tuition Plan. So far, a total of $13.9 million has been designated for transfer out of the School Bus Replacement Fund. This pattern of transferring funds between sources is becoming more common as legislators determine what areas they believe have the current highest need. Because of the estimated $4.2 billion revenue shortfall for the current two-year biennium, Representative Lambeth, a senior House budget writer, has called this current budget situation a “grim picture”, explaining the importance of being fiscally prudent and appropriating funds only on absolutely necessary services.

If you are hearing from your community about the issue of school technology funding, now is a good time to refer them to your legislators as NCSBA continues to push for the creation of a multi-year plan to fund school technology using the $730 million owed to public schools.

 

The following statewide education-related bills had legislative action this week:

HB 1071: Funds to DPI for ADM Growth

  • Passed the House and referred to the Senate Rules Committee
  • Appropriates $78.9 million in nonrecurring funds to be used to fund increased average daily membership (ADM) in public schools for the 2020-21 fiscal year
  • Appropriates an additional $22 million in nonrecurring funds for increased ADM in public schools in low-wealth counties impacted by COVID-19 for the 2020-21 fiscal year

HB 158: Waive Road Test Requirement

  • Passed the Senate and sent to the House for concurrence
  • The Senate replaced the original contents of the bill with an act that temporarily waives the road test requirement to obtain an initial provisional driver’s license (Level 2 limited provisional license)

HB 1189: Drivers Education COVID-19 Response

  • Passed the House and referred to the Senate Rules Committee
  • The House’s version of a bill similar to HB 158: Waive Road Test Requirement
  • Temporarily waives the road test requirement to obtain an initial provisional driver’s license, among other things

HB 1050: PED/Low-Performing School Districts – passed the House and referred to the Senate Rules Committee

HB 1079: Various Sales Tax Changes – presented to the Governor on Tuesday, June 2

SB 379: Retirement Systems Admin. Changes – passed the House and sent to the Senate for concurrence

SB 717: PED/Military Occupational Licensure – passed the Senate and referred to the House Homeland Security, Military, and Veterans Affairs Committee

SB 719: Retirement Protection Act – passed the House Pensions and Retirement Committee and referred to the House Rules Committee

The following local education-related bill had legislative action this week:

HB 1199: Graduating Sr Numeric Grade/Appropriate Funds

  • Committee substitute adopted by the House Education K-12 Committee, passed the House, and referred to the Senate Rules Committee
  • Converted from a statewide bill to a local bill only affecting Union County

Click here to view the status of education-related bills.

 

State Board of Education

The State Board of Education met for their monthly meeting on Wednesday, June 3 and Thursday, June 4. Board members addressed the following:

Remediation & Summer Jump Start Plan: The Board approved draft guidance and allotments in response to the requirement in HB 1043: 2020 COVID-19 Recovery Act (SL 2020-4) that each public school unit develop a Remediation & Summer Jump Start Plan for the 2020-21 school year. Plans are to be submitted no later than June 22 and should provide supplemental reading and math interventions for eligible K-4 students.

K-12 social studies standards: Much discussion centered around Board approval of the revised K-12 social studies standards. Following the passage of HB 924: Teacher Contract Changes (SL 2019-82), which requires the Board to include an Economics and Personal Finance (EPF) course as a graduation requirement, the Board approved a list of revised social studies courses. This month Board members were presented with State content standards revisions to be approved for LEA curriculum guidance. Many Board members expressed concern that the standards do not mandate the teaching of pivotal historical events and accounts. As a result, the Board only approved the standards for the EPF course and plans to revisit the other social studies course standards at the July meeting.

Student and staff device allocation policy: Board members approved an allotment policy for the distribution of $30 million for the purchase of computers/electronic devices for students and $5 million for the purchase of computers/electronic devices for school personnel appropriated in HB 1043: 2020 COVID-19 Recovery Act (SL 2020-4). Board members will approve the individual allotment numbers next week, after LEAs, charter schools, and the Innovative School District (ISD) have additional time to respond to a survey about their current need. The funding formula for student devices is based 50% on ADM and 50% on poverty funding, and the funding formula for school personnel devices is based on ADM allocation.

Click here to access all meeting materials

 

Governor’s Education and Nutrition Working Group

The Governor’s Education and Nutrition Working Group met on Thursday, June 4. The following was presented:

Access to Child Care – Susan Gale Perry, NC DHHS, Chief Deputy Secretary

  • Provided enhanced referrals to 2,400+ families to care for 3,600+ children to date
  • Provided NC Pre-K stabilization through the end of the school year
  • Provided bonus payments of $950/month to teachers and $525/month to staff for April and May

Access to Nutritious Food – Dr. Lynn Harvey, NC DPI, School Nutrition and District Operations

  • 9 million meals served since schools closed on March 16
    • $1.2 million/week would be required to continue supporting the 2,100 buses delivering meals
  • 12,000+ children across 21 LEAs received benefits from USDA demonstration project Emergency Meals-To-You (EM2Y)
    • Continues through June 30
  • Issued $314 million Pandemic-Electronic Benefit Transfer (P-EBT) benefits to 837,000+ children from 616,000+ families
    • Continues through June 12 but NC has requested extension of benefits through the summer

 

June 8-12 Legislative Meeting Calendar

Monday, June 8

4:00 pm – House: Rules – Legislative Building, rm 1228/1327 (audio)

 

 

 

Leanne E. Winner
Director of Governmental Relations
N.C. School Boards Association
(919) 747-6686

Bruce Mildwurf
Associate Director of Governmental Relations
N.C. School Boards Association
(919) 747-6692

Richard Bostic
Assistant Director of Governmental Relations
N.C. School Boards Association
(919) 747-6677

Rebekah Howard
Governmental Relations Research Specialist
N.C. School Boards Association
(919) 747-6688

Rebekah HowardNCSBA Legislative Update – June 5, 2020

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