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SENATE PROPOSAL OF AMENDMENT 2007-2008

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H.879

 

An act relating to the repeal of unnecessary, duplicative, and burdensome reports; the improved timeliness and efficiency of special education audits; and the simplification of union school district formation

     The Senate proposes to the House to amend the bill as follows:

First:  In Sec. 1, by striking out subdivisions (5) (superintendent’s annual report on hearing and vision tests), (6) (superintendent’s annual report on educational support services), and (8) (commissioner’s report on status of school choice)

Second:  In Sec. 1, by adding 12 new subdivisions to be subdivisions (10) through (21) to read as follows:

(10)  3 V.S.A. § 3026(d) (annual report from the secretary of human services, commissioner of education, and president of the university of Vermont to the legislature and governor regarding partnerships for children, families, and individuals).

(11)  16 V.S.A. § 1049a(d) (commissioner’s annual report to the legislature regarding the high school completion program).

(12)  16 V.S.A. § 2177(d) (the Vermont state colleges’ biennial report to the legislature regarding its activities).

(13)  16 V.S.A. § 2281(c) (the university of Vermont president’s biennial report to the legislature regarding the activities of the university and the state agricultural college).

(14)  16 V.S.A. § 2322 (the state agricultural college dean’s biennial submission of the estimated budget for the college’s research station and a statement of federal and other available funding).

(15)  16 V.S.A. § 2536 (the university of Vermont and state agricultural college trustees’ annual report to the legislature and the governor concerning the work of its units, including receipts, disbursements, resources, and liabilities).

(16)  16 V.S.A. § 2856(g) (adjutant general’s annual report to the legislature regarding educational loan programs for national guard members).

(17)  Sec. 90 of No. 60 of the Acts of 1997 as amended by Sec. 33 of No. 49 of the Acts 1999 (repeal of legislative oversight committee on restructuring education and assumption of the committee’s duties by standing legislative committees).

(18)  Sec. 2(b)(7) of No. 125 of the Acts of the 1999 Adj. Sess. (2000) (annual report of the commissioners of health, of buildings and general services, and of education to the house and senate committees on education regarding indoor air and hazardous exposure in Vermont schools and regarding the number of school districts that have adopted related programs).

(19)  Sec. 97(c) of No. 152 of the Acts of the 1999 Adj. Sess. (2000) (annual report of the secretary of human services and the commissioner of education to the legislature regarding the state team for children, families, and individuals and regional and community partnerships).

(20)  Sec. 71(f) of No. 68 of the Acts of the 2002 Adj. Sess. (2003) as amended by Sec. 1 of No. 4 of the Acts of 2005 of No. 4 of the Acts of 2005 (annual report of the council on education governance to the legislature regarding its progress and any recommendations for legislation necessary to comply with the No Child Left Behind Act).

(21)  Sec. 168a(c) of No. 71 of the Acts of 2005 (commissioner issues a request for proposals, chooses grant recipients, determines the amounts to be awarded to each recipient, and monitors the progress of each grant recipient for fiscal year 2006; annual report by the council on education governance to the legislature regarding its progress and recommendations for legislative change).

Third:  By adding 11 new sections to be Secs. 3a through 3k to read as follows:

Sec. 3a.  16 V.S.A. § 2177(b) is amended to read:

(b)  The books and accounts of the corporation shall be audited annually as of June 30 under the supervision of the auditor of accounts who shall publish the audit report in detail


Sec. 3b.  16 V.S.A. § 2281(a) is amended to read:

(a)  The books and accounts of the University of Vermont and State Agricultural College shall be audited annually as of June 30, under the supervision of the auditor of accounts. The report of such audit shall be published in detail by the auditor of accounts. 

Sec. 3c.  16 V.S.A. § 2835 is amended to read:

§ 2835.  CONTROLS, AND AUDITS, AND REPORTS

Control of funds appropriated and all procedures incident to the carrying out of the purposes of this chapter shall be vested in the board.  The books of account of the corporation shall be audited annually under the direction of the auditor of accounts and a report filed with the secretary of administration not later than November 1 each year.  Biennially the board shall report to the legislature on its activities during the preceding biennium. 

Sec. 3d.  16 V.S.A. § 2879f is amended to read:

§ 2879f.  ANNUAL REPORTS REVIEW

The corporation shall review, on an annual basis, the financial status of the program and the participation rate in the program.  The corporation shall also review the continued viability of the program and the administration of the program by the corporation. The corporation shall report by January 15th the findings to the speaker of the house, the president pro tem of the senate, and to the house and senate committees on education. 

Sec. 3e.  24 V.S.A. § 5261 is amended to read:

§ 5261.  ANNUAL REPORT; AUDIT

On or before March 31 of each year, the authority shall report on its activities for the preceding calendar year to the governor and to the general assembly.  Each report shall set forth a complete operating and financial statement covering its operations during the year.  The authority shall cause an audit of its books and accounts to be made at least once in each year by certified public accountants and the cost thereof shall be considered an expense of the authority and a copy thereof shall be filed with the state treasurer. 

Sec. 3f.  Sec. 7 of No. 43 of the Acts of 2005 is amended to read:

Sec. 7.  UNIVERSITY OF VERMONT

The sum of $1,700,000 is appropriated to the department of buildings and general services for the University of Vermont to assist with construction, renovation, and major facility maintenance to the university campus that advances the mission of the university to prepare the students to lead productive lives and to interpret and share knowledge for the benefit of Vermont and for society as a whole.  The university shall file with the general assembly an annual report, on or before January 15, that details the status of capital projects funded in whole or in part by state capital appropriations.

(Total appropriation – Section 7                                                        $1,700,000)

Sec. 3g.  Sec. 8 of No. 147 of the Acts of the 2005 Adj. Sess. (2006) is amended to read:

Sec. 8.  UNIVERSITY OF VERMONT

The sum of $1,800,000 is appropriated to the University of Vermont to assist with construction of the plant sciences building and with major facility maintenance to the university campus.  The university shall file with the general assembly an annual report, on or before January 15, that details the status of capital projects funded in whole or in part by state capital appropriations.

(Total appropriation – Section 8                                                        $1,800,000)

Sec. 3h.  Sec. 9 of No. 147 of the Acts of the 2005 Adj. Sess. (2006) is amended to read:

Sec. 9.  VERMONT STATE COLLEGES

The sum of $1,800,000 is appropriated to the Vermont state colleges for major facility maintenance.  The state colleges shall file with the general assembly an annual report, on or before January 15, that details the status of capital projects funded in whole or in part by state capital appropriations.

(Total appropriation – Section 9                                                        $1,800,000)


Sec. 3i.  Sec. 4(c) of No. 192 of the Acts of the 2005 Adj. Sess. (2006) is amended to read: 

(c)  On or before January 15, 2007, and on or before January 15 for five years thereafter, the task force shall report on its activities during the preceding year to the house and senate committees on education and judiciary.  The task force shall cease to exist after it files the report due on January 15, 2012.

Sec. 3j.  Sec. 9 of No. 52 of the Acts of 2007 is amended to read:

Sec. 9.  UNIVERSITY OF VERMONT

The sum of $1,600,000 is appropriated to the University of Vermont for construction, renovation, or maintenance projects.  The university shall file with the general assembly an annual report, on or before January 15, that details the status of capital projects funded in whole or in part by state capital appropriations.

(Total appropriation – Section 9                                               $ 1,600,000)

Sec. 3k.  Sec. 10 of No. 52 of the Acts of 2007 is amended to read:

Sec. 10.  VERMONT STATE COLLEGES

The sum of $1,600,000 is appropriated to the Vermont State Colleges for major facility maintenance.  The state colleges shall file with the general assembly an annual report, on or before January 15, that details the status of capital projects funded in whole or in part by state capital appropriations.

(Total appropriation – Section 10                                             $ 1,600,000)

Fourth:  By striking out Secs. 5 through 20 in their entirety

Fifth:  By adding four new sections to be numbered Secs. 5, 6, 7, and 8 to read as follows:

Sec. 5.  Secs. 13 and 14 of No. 182 of the Acts of the 2005 Adj. Sess. (2006) are amended to read:

Sec. 13.  Sec. 2 of No. 64 of the Acts of 2003, as amended by Sec. 2 4 of No. 114 of the Acts of 2004 the 2003 Adj. Sess. (2004) is amended to read:

Sec. 2.  COMPLIANCE WITH FEDERAL REQUIREMENTS; MEASURING ADEQUATE YEARLY PROGRESS TOWARD ACHIEVING STATE STANDARDS; CONSEQUENCES

16 V.S.A. § 165 authorizes the commissioner of education to determine how well schools and students are meeting state standards every two years and to impose certain consequences if schools are failing to meet standards after specific time periods.  Notwithstanding the provisions of that section, in order to comply with the provisions of Public Law 107-110, known as the No Child Left Behind Act of 2001, during school years 2003–2004 through 2006–2008 20082009, the commissioner is authorized to determine whether schools and school districts are meeting state standards annually and the state board of education is authorized to impose on schools and school districts consequences allowed in state law and required by the Act within the time frame required in the Act.  However, consistent with Title IX, Part E, Subpart 2, Sec. 9527 of the No Child Left Behind Act, neither the state nor any subdivision thereof shall be required to spend any funds or incur any costs not paid for under the Act in order to comply with the provisions of the Act.  The state or any subdivision thereof may expend other funds for activities they were already conducting consistent with the Act, or for activities authorized in a state or local fiscal year 2004 budget.  It is the intent of the general assembly to continue to study the provisions of the federal law and to seek guidance from the federal government in order to determine permanent changes to Title 16 that will be necessary to comply with federal law and to avoid having federal law cause state and local governments to absorb the cost of unfunded mandates.

Sec. 14.  Subsections (b), (c), and (e) of Sec. 3 of No. 64 of the Acts of 2003, as amended by Sec. 2 5 of No. 114 of the Acts of 2004 the 2003 Adj. Sess. (2004) are amended to read:

(b)  Notwithstanding the provisions of 16 V.S.A. §§ 1075(e), 1093, and 1128(b) which stipulate that a child of parents who become homeless shall be educated in the school district in which the child is found and that a school district may choose not to accept nonresident pupils, in order to comply with the provisions of Public Law 107-110, known as the No Child Left Behind Act of 2001, the provisions of this section shall apply to children who are homeless during school years 2003–2004 through 2006-2008 20082009.  It is the intent of the general assembly to continue to study the provisions of the federal law and to seek guidance from the federal government in order to determine permanent changes to Title 16 that will be necessary to comply with federal law.

(c)  If a child becomes homeless during school year 2005–2006, 2006–2007, or 2007–2008, or 2008–2009, the child shall either be educated:  in the school of origin for the duration of the homelessness or for the remainder of the academic year if the child becomes permanently housed outside the district of origin; or in the school district in which the child is actually living.  The determination as to which school the child shall attend shall be made by the school board of the school district in which the child is living according to the best interests of the child. 

(e)  Notwithstanding the provisions of 16 V.S.A. § 4001(1)(A) which stipulate that a pupil must be a legal resident of the district attending a school owned and operated by the district in order to be counted in the average daily membership of the district, during the 2003–2004 through 2006–2008 20082009 school years, a child who is homeless during the census period shall be counted in the school district or districts in which the child is enrolled.  However, if at any time a homeless child enrolls, pursuant to this section, in a school district other than the district in which the child was counted, the district in which the child is enrolled shall become responsible for the education of the child, including payment of education services and, if appropriate, development and implementation of an individualized education plan.

Sec. 6.  TECHNICAL EDUCATION;  workforce education and training; REPORT

(a)  The Commissioner of Education shall:

(1)  Outline and review the current method or methods by which tuition is paid for students enrolled in secondary schools (“secondary students”) to attend regional technical center programs.

(2)  Consider and propose potential solutions to any barriers preventing, discouraging, or failing to encourage secondary students to attend regional technical center programs, including scheduling issues, availability of classes outside the traditional school day and academic year, funding, and financial disincentives.

(3)  Consider and propose potential financial and other incentives to encourage regional technical centers to offer technical education programs at times other than the traditional school day and academic year and to otherwise make technical education programs more available to secondary students and to adults with and without high school diplomas.

(b)  On or before January 15, 2009, the commissioner shall submit a written report to the senate committee on economic development, housing and general affairs, the house committee on commerce, and the senate and house committees on education detailing the results of the work performed pursuant to this section and all potential methods of addressing the identified issues.

Sec. 7.  DESIGNATION OF A PUBLIC OR ELEMENTARY SCHOOL AS THE PUBLIC SCHOOL OF A DISTRICT

The general assembly recognizes that, notwithstanding the limitations of
16 V.S.A. § 827, it may at times be necessary or advisable to authorize Vermont school districts to designate a public or approved independent elementary or secondary school as the public school of the designating school district.  On or before January 15, 2009, the commissioner shall examine the issue and provide the senate and house committees on education with detailed information that will enable the general assembly to determine whether expanded authorization should be available to all school districts that do not maintain a school, whether authorization exceeding § 827 should never be granted, or whether expanded authorization should be limited to specific situations.  The detailed information shall include data regarding school districts that provide for the education of their students by paying tuition, the number of students in these districts, the schools the students are able to attend under current law, and the schools they might reasonably attend if districts could designate a public or approved independnet elementary school, a public secondary school, or both as the public school or schools of the district.


Sec. 8.  16 V.S.A. § 835 is amended to read:

§ 835.  LEMINGTON, BLOOMFIELD, BRUNSWICK, MAIDSTONE, GRANBY, AND GUILDHALL; TUITIONING OF ELEMENTARY STUDENTS

The school boards of the towns of Lemington, Bloomfield, Brunswick, Granby, Guildhall, and Maidstone school districts may provide for the elementary education of the pupils residing in their districts by paying tuition to public elementary schools in the state of New Hampshire.  Notwithstanding the provisions of section 823 of this title, school boards districts affected by this section shall pay the full tuition charged by a public elementary school in New Hampshire.



Published by:

The Vermont General Assembly
115 State Street
Montpelier, Vermont


www.leg.state.vt.us