Tuesday, April 17, 2018

House Bill Released.

The curtain is up and the House Omnibus Education Funding and Policy bill has hit the big stage.  Unlike the Senate--at least at this point--the House has combined its funding and policy components into one bill.  The Governor has stated a preference for policy and funding to be treated separately, so we will have to wait to see what the process will look like going forward.  It is also unknown whether the Legislature will assemble one giant mega-budget bill that will entail all the budget (and perhaps policy) decisions in one document.  That is a format that has been followed periodically--and more consistently--over the past few decades.

So, with no further delay, here is a link to the House Omnibus Education Funding and Policy Bill:  HF 4328.

Here are the budget change items that are in the bill:

  • Permanent increase of $18/PU in School Safety Revenue at a cost of $16.6 million.
  • $5.0 million for School-linked Mental Health Grants.
  • $2.0 million for School Facility Audit Grants.
  • $1.9 million for Safe Schools Revenue for Intermediate School Districts.
  • $1.7 million for Safe Schools Revenue for Education Cooperatives.
  • $1.6 million for the Monticello School District's special education state miscalculation issue.
  • $420,000 for St. Cloud's summer ELL program.
  • $400,000 for School Resource Officer Training.
  • $350,000 for "Jake's Law."
  • $300,000 for School Threat Assessment Grants.
  • $273,000 for Suicide Prevention Training.
  • $250,000 for Vocational Enrichment Revenue.
  • $250,000 for Mounds View Early College Aid.
  • $200,000 to the Legislative Auditor for a report on school district funding.
  • $200,000 for the Mind Foundry Learning Foundation.
  • $150,000 for a Vocational PSEO Grant.
  • $50,000 for a school bus safety campaign.
  • $50,000 for the Grand Rapids Children's Museum.
The bill also expands the use of Long Term Facilities Maintenance Revenue to include school safety improvements.  That provision would take effect for taxes payable in 2019 which is the 2019-2020 school year.

Here is a link to the budget sheet that also shows some funding reductions for various education programs:  HF 4328 Budget Amounts.

The bill will be formally heard this afternoon at 1 PM in Room 5 of the State Office Building.  The House Education Finance Committee will entertain amendments from members at tomorrow afternoon's meeting.

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