Legislature(2003 - 2004)

04/30/2003 01:47 PM Senate HES

Audio Topic
* first hearing in first committee of referral
+ teleconferenced
= bill was previously heard/scheduled
                    ALASKA STATE LEGISLATURE                                                                                  
          SENATE HEALTH, EDUCATION AND SOCIAL SERVICES                                                                        
                       STANDING COMMITTEE                                                                                     
                         April 30, 2003                                                                                         
                           1:47 p.m.                                                                                            
MEMBERS PRESENT                                                                                                               
Senator Fred Dyson, Chair                                                                                                       
Senator Lyda Green, Vice Chair                                                                                                  
Senator Gary Wilken                                                                                                             
Senator Gretchen Guess                                                                                                          
MEMBERS ABSENT                                                                                                                
Senator Bettye Davis                                                                                                            
COMMITTEE CALENDAR                                                                                                            
SENATE CONCURRENT RESOLUTION NO. 10                                                                                             
Establishing the Joint Legislative Charter School Task Force.                                                                   
     MOVED CSSCR 10(HES) OUT OF COMMITTEE                                                                                       
PREVIOUS ACTION                                                                                                               
SCR 10 - See HES minutes dated 4/23/03.                                                                                         
WITNESS REGISTER                                                                                                              
Mr. Kevin Sweeney, Legislation Liaison                                                                                          
Department of Education &                                                                                                       
 Early Development                                                                                                              
801 W 10 St.                                                                                                                    
Juneau, AK  99801-1894                                                                                                          
POSITION STATEMENT: Supported SCR 10.                                                                                         
ACTION NARRATIVE                                                                                                              
TAPE 03-25, SIDE A                                                                                                            
                SCR 10-CHARTER SCHOOL TASK FORCE                                                                            
CHAIR FRED DYSON  called the Senate Health,  Education and Social                                                             
Services  Standing  Committee  meeting  to  order  at  1:47  p.m.                                                               
Present were Senators  Guess, Green, Wilken and  Dyson. The Chair                                                               
announced SCR  10 to be  up for consideration. He  explained that                                                               
he  wasn't sure  about how  to proceed  on the  issue of  charter                                                               
schools  and SCR  10  sets up  a  task force  of  people who  are                                                               
enthusiastic and knowledgeable about  how to make charter schools                                                               
work better.                                                                                                                    
He noted there  was a new committee substitute,  version Q, which                                                               
for one  thing changes one member  from being from the  office of                                                               
the governor to being an appointee of the governor on line 2.                                                                   
SENATOR GARY WILKEN moved version Q of SCR 10.                                                                                  
SENATOR LYDA GREEN objected and asked to go off the record.                                                                     
1:50 - 1:53 p.m. - at ease                                                                                                      
SENATOR GREEN  moved on page 1,  line 7, to delete  references to                                                               
specific work  groups, networks and school  districts. There were                                                               
no objections and Amendment 1 was adopted.                                                                                      
SENATOR WILKEN noted  that the comma needed to be  deleted at the                                                               
end of  line 6  and "and"  needed to be  inserted. There  were no                                                               
objections and Amendment 2 was adopted.                                                                                         
CHAIR DYSON asked what the administration thought of this bill.                                                                 
MR. KEVIN SWEENEY,  Legislative Liaison, DEED, said  that this is                                                               
the best way  to look at possible  legislative regulation changes                                                               
that might be needed for charter  schools. He wanted to know what                                                               
the  fiscal note  would be  because the  department would  not be                                                               
able to foot the whole bill.                                                                                                    
CHAIR DYSON  said he  figured the task  force might  spend around                                                               
SENATOR GREEN asked who would pay that.                                                                                         
CHAIR DYSON said his understanding  that whatever money they need                                                               
for  the task  force might  be  found through  the federal  grant                                                               
startup money.                                                                                                                  
SENATOR  GREEN  said if  the  legislature  is creating  the  task                                                               
force, they  should also  pay for  some part of  it. She  did not                                                               
think  it  was  the  department's   responsibility  to  fund  the                                                               
Legislature's task force.  She also wanted the  task force report                                                               
to  go   to  the  Board   of  Education  concurrently   with  the                                                               
SENATOR GREEN  moved to  send the  report to  the State  Board of                                                               
Education concurrently  with its  submission to  the legislature.                                                               
There were no objections.                                                                                                       
SENATOR WILKEN  moved to amend  the fiscal  note to say  that the                                                               
task force  would be  funded equally by  the Legislature  and the                                                               
Department of Education and Early Development.                                                                                  
MR. SWEENEY  suggested making  the funding  subject to  the grant                                                               
approval from the  U.S. DEED, because that's where  the funds are                                                               
coming from. There were no objections.                                                                                          
SENATOR  GRETCHEN GUESS  said she  thought that  a member  of the                                                               
state board really should be  the governor's appointee. There are                                                               
a lot of issues  with charter schools and they need  to be at the                                                               
table. It is  her caucus' recommendation that  Senator Davis, who                                                               
has spent so much time on this issue, is on the task force.                                                                     
CHAIR  DYSON said  that  would be  his  strong recommendation  as                                                               
well. Much  of what they  have now is  a result of  Senator Davis                                                               
pushing this issue.                                                                                                             
SENATOR WILKEN  suggested to add  a parent  to the makeup  of the                                                               
board on page 2,  lines 23 - 28 and also,  since they are talking                                                               
about structuring schools, they would  want a superintendent or a                                                               
principal certificate for expertise on organization.                                                                            
CHAIR  DYSON said  he thought  that the  people from  the charter                                                               
schools are all  enthusiastic and involved parents,  but a number                                                               
of advocacy  groups want to  be represented as well.  His thought                                                               
is  that  this  task  force  be made  up  of  the  dreamers,  the                                                               
enthusiasts  and visionaries  who will  get the  information from                                                               
the experts.                                                                                                                    
SENATOR WILKEN said he would be fine with that.                                                                                 
SENATOR GUESS  moved to  pass CSSCR  10(HES) from  committee with                                                               
individual  recommendations and  the accompanying  amended fiscal                                                               
note. There were no objections and it was so ordered.                                                                           
CHAIR DYSON adjourned the meeting at 2:00 p.m.                                                                                  

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