Legislature(2005 - 2006)CAPITOL 106

04/13/2005 08:30 AM RULES

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* first hearing in first committee of referral
+ teleconferenced
= bill was previously heard/scheduled
Moved CSHB 16(RLS) Out of Committee
Moved CSHB 156(RLS) Out of Committee
Bills Previously Heard/Scheduled
Heard & Held
HB  16-SCHOOL FUNDS RELATED TO BOARDING SCHOOLS                                                                               
CHAIR ROKEBERG announced  that the first order  of business would                                                               
be HOUSE  BILL NO.  16, "An  Act relating  to funding  for school                                                               
districts  operating secondary  school boarding  programs and  to                                                               
funding for  school districts from which  boarding students come;                                                               
and providing for an effective date."                                                                                           
8:39:16 AM                                                                                                                    
REPRESENTATIVE COGHILL  explained that HB  16 is an  expansion of                                                               
the boarding school program such  that the state becomes partners                                                               
with the  school district and the  state would pay a  stipend for                                                               
the students.   The  legislation is designed  to only  fund those                                                               
communities with a  boarding school at this time, and  at the end                                                               
of five years the situation will be re-evaluated.                                                                               
8:40:42 AM                                                                                                                    
REPRESENTATIVE COGHILL  moved that the committee  adopt Amendment                                                               
1, labeled 24-LS0125\A.3, Mischel, 4/8/05, which read:                                                                          
     Page 1, line 2:                                                                                                            
     Following "programs":                                                                                                    
          Delete "and"                                                                                                        
          Insert ","                                                                                                          
          Following "come;"                                                                                                   
          Insert "and to the effectiveness of district                                                                        
     secondary school boarding programs;"                                                                                     
     Page 2, following line 17:                                                                                                 
     Insert a new bill section to read:                                                                                         
        "*  Sec. 4.   The  uncodified  law of  the State  of                                                                
     Alaska is amended by adding a new section to read:                                                                         
          REPORT ON SECONDARY SCHOOL BOARDING PROGRAMS.                                                                         
     Not later  than February 1, 2010, the  department shall                                                                    
     provide to  the governor a report  on the effectiveness                                                                    
     of  the  district  secondary school  boarding  programs                                                                    
     operated  by school  districts.   The department  shall                                                                    
     include   draft   legislation   to  extend   the   cost                                                                    
     reimbursement  under   AS 14.16.200  and   the  student                                                                    
     counting  method  under  AS 14.17.905(c)  for  boarding                                                                    
     school   programs   if   the  department   finds   that                                                                    
     continuation of  the programs is  in the  best interest                                                                    
     of the  state.   The department  shall make  the report                                                                    
     available to the public and to the legislature."                                                                           
REPRESENTATIVE HARRIS objected for discussion purposes.                                                                         
8:41:07 AM                                                                                                                    
REPRESENTATIVE COGHILL explained that  Amendment 1 specifies that                                                               
[the department] will  provide a report on  the effectiveness [of                                                               
secondary school  boarding programs]  to the legislature  and the                                                               
governor no  later than February 1,  2010.  He related  that Eddy                                                               
Jeans,  Director, School  Finance,  Department  of Education  and                                                               
Early Development,  has said that  the department can  absorb the                                                               
cost of the report.                                                                                                             
8:41:52 AM                                                                                                                    
CHAIR  ROKEBERG recalled  that Mt.  Edgecumbe wasn't  one of  the                                                               
three boarding schools,  and therefore he asked  if Mt. Edgecumbe                                                               
is handled as a separate entity.                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE COGHILL  clarified that Mt. Edgecumbe  is a state-                                                               
operated boarding  school for which  the state bears  the capital                                                               
costs  and  the  full  boarding  costs.    The  boarding  schools                                                               
addressed in HB  16 are filling needs in the  area.  For example,                                                               
the boarding  school in Galena  has people from all  over western                                                               
8:42:37 AM                                                                                                                    
REPRESENTATIVE  HARRIS asked  if these  are all  strictly private                                                               
boarding schools.                                                                                                               
REPRESENTATIVE COGHILL  replied no, and clarified  that these are                                                               
public schools that  are run by the district.   He noted that the                                                               
Galena school district  is an actual school  district; the Nenana                                                               
school district is  a first class city school district.   He said                                                               
he  didn't know  about  [the structure]  of  the Bethel  boarding                                                               
school.     In   further  response   to  Representative   Harris,                                                               
Representative  Coghill  confirmed   that  the  Nenana  [boarding                                                               
school] uses the  Nenana public school for  classroom space, "but                                                               
the boarding  school is, in fact,  going to be separate  from the                                                               
school."  The same will be the  case in Galena and Bethel.  These                                                               
boarding schools  are taking advantage  of economies of  scale by                                                               
establishing  a boarding  area and  utilizing the  public schools                                                               
[for curriculum].                                                                                                               
8:44:07 AM                                                                                                                    
REPRESENTATIVE  COGHILL, in  further  response to  Representative                                                               
Harris, specified  that these students are  high school students.                                                               
He was  not aware of a  situation at any of  these three boarding                                                               
schools in which more than a high school was involved.                                                                          
REPRESENTATIVE  HARRIS  expressed  the  need  to  closely  review                                                               
regional  boarding schools,  although he  acknowledged that  it's                                                               
controversial.   He said  he viewed these  boarding schools  as a                                                               
pilot project for the beginnings  of [a regional boarding school]                                                               
REPRESENTATIVE  COGHILL stated  that the  time line  was inserted                                                               
because there is  a need to review the  progress.  Representative                                                               
Coghill related  that having seen  two of these  boarding schools                                                               
first  hand,  these students  attend  these  boarding schools  on                                                               
purpose.   In  fact,  in all  cases there  are  waiting lists  to                                                               
enter.   He noted that  the legislation  also includes a  sort of                                                               
hold harmless [provision].                                                                                                      
8:46:25 AM                                                                                                                    
REPRESENTATIVE  HARRIS  removed  his  objection,  [and  therefore                                                               
Amendment 1 was adopted].                                                                                                       
8:46:33 AM                                                                                                                    
REPRESENTATIVE HARRIS moved  to report HB 16, as  amended, out of                                                               
committee  with individual  recommendations and  the accompanying                                                               
fiscal  notes.    There  being no  objection,  CSHB  16(RLS)  was                                                               
reported from the House Rules Standing Committee.                                                                               

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