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GOVERNMENT RELATIONS


Alliance Legislative Report 99-06

Distributed via Email: February 20, 2015

LEGISLATURE BACK TO BUSINESS AFTER UPROAR

As expected, there was quite an uproar after Governor Bruce Rauner’s state budget address outlining his plans for the Fiscal Year 2016 budget on Wednesday. Though sparing the appropriation for K-12 education, deep cuts were proposed for other parts of the state budget such as Medicaid, higher education, and pensions. More information on the budget can be found in IASA’s Capitol Watch at the IASA website and in the last Alliance Legislative Report. Democrat legislators, union representatives, municipalities, and those in the health care arena immediately began firing back at the governor. The stage is set now for difficult budget negotiations over the next few months. The legislature will now take up discussions on its vision for the FY ’16 budget.

Both chambers did return to business as usual and continued to consider bills in committees. The Senate, which will not be in session next week, met its first deadline as today (Friday) is the final day to introduce legislation in that chamber. The House of Representatives will convene next week, Wednesday through Friday, and resume committee work.

BILL ACTION FROM THIS WEEK

SB 82 (Sullivan, D-Rushville), an Alliance initiative regarding school board elections, p ermits a congressional township comprising the territory of a school district to pass, by a 2/3 vote of all voters voting on the question, a proposition to elect board members at large and without restriction by area of residence within the district. The bill was approved by the Senate Executive Committee and was sent to the Senate floor for further consideration.

SB 672 ( Lightford, D-Maywood) a dds the subjects of consumer debt, higher education student loans, and identity-theft security to the list of subjects that are required to be included in the financial literacy component of consumer education. The bill was approved by the Senate Education Committee and was sent to the Senate floor for further consideration.

SB 706 (Cunningham, D-Chicago) requires non-public schools to perform criminal background checks on student teachers. The bill was approved by the Senate Education Committee and was sent to the Senate floor for further consideration.

SB 736 ( McConnaughay, R-St. Charles), an Alliance initiative regarding the School Construction Grant Program, provides that school districts shall receive a priority ranking from ISBE within 90 days of the end of the current year's application cycle and requires ISBE to priority rank, by grant year, all school districts that have been waiting for longer than 90 days for school construction project grant funds. The bill was discussed in the Senate Education Committee but no vote was taken.

HB 226 ( Cavaletto, R-Salem) increases the debt limit for Sandoval Community Unit School District 501. The bill was approved by the House Elementary and Secondary Education: School Curriculum and Policies Committee and was sent to the House floor for further consideration.

BILLS SCHEDULED FOR COMMITTEE NEXT WEEK

HOUSE ELEMENTARY AND SECONDARY EDUCATION: CHARTER SCHOOL POLICY COMMITTEE
Wednesday, February 25, 3:00 p.m., Room C-1, Stratton Office Building

HB 397 (Welch, D-Westchester) removes provisions allowing the State Charter School Commission to reverse a school board's decision to deny, revoke, or not renew a charter.

HB 1360 (Gabel, D-Evanston) requires a charter school to comply with all (instead of all applicable) health and safety requirements applicable to public schools under the laws of this state.

HOUSE LABOR AND COMMERCE COMMITTEE
Wednesday, February 25, 3:00 p.m., Room 413, Stratton Office Building

HB 251 ( Sosnowski, R-Rockford) extends the requirement to all school districts that at least three-fourths of all bargaining unit employees must have affirmatively voted to authorize a teacher strike, not just Chicago Public Schools.

HB 432 ( Guzzardi, D-Chicago) provides that employees earning less than $69,000 per year shall be entitled to overtime pay. It also provides that the amount shall increase annually by the percentage increase in the consumer price index.

HOUSE ELEMENTARY AND SECONDARY EDUCATION: SCHOOL CURRICULUM AND POLICIES COMMITTEE
Wednesday, February 25, 4:00 p.m., Room 114, State Capitol

HB 425 (Morrison, R-Palatine) allows school boards to discontinue, by publicly adopted resolution, any instructional mandate (except for P.E., Drivers’ Education, and high school graduation requirements)if any state payments to a school district are delayed for at least one payment cycle.

HB 494 (Cassidy, D-Chicago) makes changes concerning the types of convictions checked for and occurring, regarding criminal background checks for employment of teachers and revocation of licensure.

HB 1330 ( Sandack, R-Downers Grove) , and Alliance initiative,provides that physical education may (rather than shall) be provided to pupils.

HOUSE JUDICIARY – CRIMINAL COMMITTEE
Wednesday, February 25, 4:00 p.m., Room D-1, Stratton Office Building

HB 147 (Andrade, D-Chicago) makes it a Class 1 felony aggravated battery charge for a person at least 18 years of age to cause bodily harm or disability or disfigurement to an enrolled school student under 18 years of age, if the offense was committed within a school safe passage route.

HB 247 (Willis, D-Northlake) i n the statute creating the offense of criminal street gang recruitment on school grounds, defines "school grounds" to mean the property, including buildings and grounds, of a public or private elementary, secondary, or post-secondary school, or a public or private 2-year or 4-year institution of higher education; public property or property open to public use within 1,000 feet of school property; a school bus; a designated school bus stop; and public property or property open to public use which is within 1,000 feet of the school bus stop, during the time when school children are waiting to be picked up and transported to or are being dropped off from school or a school-sponsored activity.

HB 355 ( Zalewski, D-Riverside) requires that enhanced penalties for certain drug violations committed in a school, on or near school property, or in a conveyance used to transport students to school for school-related activities, must be committed when persons under the age 18 are present, the offense is committed during school hours, or the offense is committed at times when persons under the age of 18 are reasonably expected to be present in the school.

HB 1314 (Flowers, D-Chicago) provides that any person, firm, corporation, association, agency, institution, or other legal entity that knowingly, by means of a false statement, false representation, concealment of any material fact, or by other fraudulent scheme or device on behalf of himself, herself, or others, obtains payments from a school district to which he, she, or it is not entitled, or in a greater amount than that to which he, she, or it is entitled, commits vendor fraud against a school district.

HOUSE JUDICIARY – CIVIL COMMITTEE
Thursday, February 26, 8:30 a.m., Room D-1, Stratton Office Building

HB 248 (Kay, R-Edwardsville) provides that the court may declare null and void any final action taken at a closed or open meeting (instead of only a closed meeting) in violation of the Act.

HB 303 ( McDermed, R-Frankfort) provides that a severance agreement that is funded in whole or part by public moneys or that releases a claim against a public body shall not require or impose any condition on any party to keep allegations, evidence, settlement amounts, or any other information confidential, except that which is necessary to protect a trade secret, proprietary information, or information that is otherwise exempt from disclosure under the Act.

This legislative report was 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.

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


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