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Minutes for HB2445 - Committee on K-12 Education Budget

Short Title

Amending the Kansas school equity and enhancement act regarding local option budget provisions, certain weightings, capital outlay expenditures and repealing provisions of the CLASS act.

Minutes Content for Tue, Mar 13, 2018

Chairperson Patton opened the meeting and welcomed everyone.  He asked Representative Melissa Rooker to inform the Committee about the handouts that she distributed.  She indicated one handout was a memo from Edward Penner, Research Analyst, Legislative Research Department, in regard to the local option budget cap history. (Attachment 1)  The other was a guide for applying for capital improvement (bond and interest) state aid. (Attachment 2)

Chairperson Patton opened the hearing on HB2445 and asked Senior Assistant Revisor, Jason Long to give an overview of the bill.  Revisor Long stated HB2445 makes various amendments regarding school finance provisions.  These amendments generally respond to the equity issues identified by the Kansas Supreme Court in its Gannon V decision. (Attachment 3)   Committee members asked questions which were answered by Revisor Long.

Mark Tallman, Kansas Association of School Boards, spoke as a proponent to HB2445.  He stated that while there are many ways to address the equity issues, the most important thing is that they are addressed so the Gannon V case can be resolved.  He supports the provision of SB19 allowing districts to adopt a higher LOB by protest petition, rather than election; and in fact, would support allowing this step to be taken by board action alone. (Attachment 4)

Also appearing as a proponent was Mark Desetti, Kansas National Education Association.  He felt that HB2445 addressed the four issues raised in the Gannon V case.  Those issues being: the expansion of capital outlay expenditures to include utilities and property and casualty insurance; the use of prior year LOB authority in determining current year state aid; the change in election procedures for the LOB, and; the 10% at-risk floor.  Beyond these issues, the bill also codifies the current practice regarding the "curve of best fit" in the transportation funding formula. (Attachment 5)

There was no written only proponent testimony.

Appearing as an opponent was Dave Trabert, Kansas Policy Institute.  Mr. Trabert encouraged the Committee to approve the At Risk funding, reject the changes in Section 3 and Section 5 of this bill, and give careful consideration to the implications of restricting the use of capital outlay funds. (Attachment 6)  Several Committee members had questions for Mr. Trabert.

David Smith, Kansas City, Kansas Public Schools was also an opponent.  He had concerns about Section 3 (h), which states that "The board of any school district that desires to increase its local option budget authority for the immediately succeeding school year shall submit written notice of such intent to the state board by April 1 of the current school year."  The LOB amount is generally determined by school districts after state aid is decided.  State aid is seldom known by April 1 and districts would be forced to estimate LOB state aid. (Attachment 7)  Questions were asked by Committee members.

Written only opponent testimony was provided by:

Bill Brady, Schools for Fair Funding. (Attachment 8)

Patrick Vogelsberg, Kansas Association of REALTORS. (Attachment 9)

There was no oral or written only neutral testimony and Chairperson Patton closed the hearing on HB2445.

The next meeting of the House K-12 Education Budget Committee will be a joint meeting with the Senate Select Committee on Education Finance at 1:00 p.m. on Friday, March 16, 2018.

Chairperson Patton adjourned the meeting at 2:16 p.m.