HB 1473-FN-L (2012, failed*) further lower adequacy funding

posted Dec 15, 2011, 8:08 AM by Bill Duncan   [ updated May 21, 2012, 6:44 AM ]
Docket Referred for Interim Study by a voice vote

2/8/12 Committee Report by Rep. Lynne M Ober for Special Committee on Education Funding Reform: This bill is a slight revision of HB 337, Chapter 258, Laws of 2011, which this House passed twice last year by overwhelming majorities.  The bill calculates the base cost of adequacy using empirical, realistic standards and criteria derived from the state department of education promulgated minimum standards.  It  increases targeted aid over current law for all categories of targeted students and into the future, would allow significantly greater targeted aid than current law authorizes.  However, recognizing the political reality that the Senate has shown no interest in revisiting the adequacy formula this year and not wishing to expend the valuable time of House members in a subtle exercise, the committee voted unanimously to recommend this bill for interim study.  By doing so, this bill remains available as a vehicle for future legislative action on this important subject should a consensus emerge in both chambers of the General Court to improve current law.  Vote 14-0. 

AN ACT relative to the calculation and distribution of adequate education grants.

SPONSORS: Rep. Hess, Merr 9

COMMITTEE: Special Committee on Education Funding Reform

ANALYSIS [Emphasis added]
This bill:
I. Determines the per pupil cost of the opportunity for an adequate education which includes aid distributed to schools based on the number of pupils eligible to receive special education, or eligible for a free or reduced-price lunch, or who are English language learners.
II. Provides fiscal capacity disparity aid, in addition to aid for the cost of the opportunity for an adequate education, based on a municipality’s equalized valuation, including utilities, per pupil and median family income.
III. Provides that for the biennium ending June 30, 2013, no municipality shall receive an adequate education grant in a fiscal year which is greater than the adequate education grant received in the 2011 fiscal year.
IV. Requires a municipality which is scheduled to receive an adequate education grant in a fiscal year which is less than the grant such municipality received in the 2012 fiscal year to receive an additional grant from the education trust fund.
V. Limits a municipality’s total education grant beginning July 1, 2013.
VI. Provides additional funds for certain third grade pupils who test at the proficient level or above in the reading component of the state assessment.
VII. Repeals the statutory provisions requiring that excess education tax payments be remitted to the department of revenue administration thereby permitting municipalities to retain any excess education tax revenues.
VIII. Establishes a joint legislative oversight committee on accountability for an adequate education.
IX. Amends the amount of funding provided to chartered public school.

The Department of Educations states this bill may increase state expenditures and local revenue by an indeterminable amount in FY 2013 and each year thereafter. This bill would have no fiscal impact on state and county revenue, or county and local expenditures.

2012-H-2416-L title: relative to the calculation and distribution of adequate education grants.
Sponsors: (Prime)David Hess

State Aid