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Under the Dome - March 22, 2013

Committees are done. So what is where?

Here's the run-down on legislation so far.

Teacher rights

HB 2023 interfering with a public employee's right to use payroll deduction and silencing public employees in political speech. This bill was radically changed by the Senate such that now it does not enact the extreme limits on political speech and only prohibits the collection of contributions to union political action committees by payroll deduction. It was rolled into HB 2022, passed by the Senate and House concurred in the changes. It now goes to the Governor for his signature (or veto).

 HB 2123 making mandatory collective bargaining and payroll deduction of union dues in the illegal for public employees. The bill never had a hearing and was left to die.

HB 2085 and Sub for HB 2027 both of which would have effectively ended teacher collective bargaining. The committee chairman agreed to not work either bill. Collective bargaining for teachers will be a discussion among KNEA, KASB, KSSA, and USA through the summer and fall with an eye to making recommendations on possible changes to the law next year.

Vouchers, Charters, and opting out of laws

HB 2263, special education vouchers, was defeated in the House Ed Committee.

HB 2400, corporate tuition tax credits (vouchers) for low income and special education students was amended into Sub for SB 22 and passed out of Committee. It is now on the House floor and could be brought up for debate.

HB 2320 and SB 196, twin bills to radically expand charter schools in Kansas. HB 2320 was defeated in the House Ed Committee; SB 176 was defeated in the Senate Ed Committee.

HB 2319 and SB 176, twin bills creating the "coalition of innovative districts" which would be allowed to opt out of state laws, rules, and regulations. The House-passed version allows for 10 such districts; the Senate-passed version allows for 10% of all districts (about 28). SB 176 passed the Senate and is now in the House Education Committee; HB 2319 passed the House, was amended by the Senate and passed. This issue will likely be dealt with in conference or the House might concur in the Senate changes to the House bill.


Bullying policies; SB 105, SB 137, and HB 2222 - SB 105 never had a hearing, SB 137 was never acted upon by the Senate Ed Committee, and HB 2222 passed the full House and now sits in the Senate Ed Committee which has taken no action as of yet.

SB 44, Dyslexia, had a hearing but was not acted upon by the Senate Ed Committee.

SB 169, mandatory retention of third graders, was voted down in the Senate Ed Committee. The bill was later reconsidered, amended significantly, and voted out of committee. It is now subject to consideration by the full Senate. The bill now only applies to low performing school districts and allows the parent to make the decision to retain or promote the child.

HB 2280, mandating "celebrate freedom week." This bill has passed the House and was referred to the Senate Ed Committee.

SB 104 mandating changes to internet policies passed the Senate, was amended by the House Ed Committee and awaits action by the full House.

HB 2289 prohibiting the use of common core standards was killed in the House Ed Committee.

HB 2306 requiring science teachers to teach climate change denial theories never had a hearing in the House Ed Committee.

SB 172 prohibiting the use of Carnegie units never had a hearing the Senate Ed Committee.

School Finance

No significant changes have been made. The budgets passed by both chambers provide for flat funding for K-12 education but dramatic reductions in higher education funding. These issues will be worked out in budget and tax conference committees.

SB 23, the extension of the 20-mill statewide property tax levy for schools passed the Senate. In the House, the House Ed Budget Committee amended HB 2003, mandating a 10% LOB and calling it state aid, into SB 23 and passed the bill on to the full House for consideration. It sits on the House floor awaiting action

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