GSSA – Day 34 Update

Wednesday, March 15, 2017


Both the full House and Senate had brief meetings on Wednesday.  In the House, SR 95 was sent back to the House Rules Committee for improvement.  In the Senate, the following two education related bills were passed:


HB 44, the FY18 budget – The FY18 budget passed the Senate 55 – 0. Because of the differences between the House and the Senate versions, the bill was sent back to the House for reconsideration.  Expect the budget to go to a conference committee to resolve the differences.


HB 359 – Supporting and Strengthening Families Act includes a section on guardianship and even includes a guardianship form.


The Senate Education and Youth Committee  heard the following bills on Wednesday:


HB 338  – The system of supports and assistance for low-performing schools in greatest need.  The Chairman provided copies of the new Senate version of the bill with little or no comment.  He did ask for written comments, and said written comments will be taken by his office until 10 a.m. on Friday, March 17th.  We are reviewing the Senate version of the bill today.  If you would like a copy of the substitute bill, you can request one from the legislative committee member or send Josh Hooper or me an email, and we will provide you with an electronic copy.  The revised amended bill will be presented to the Education and Youth Committee on Monday.  The Chair said he plans to take a vote on the bill that day.


HB 430 – Governor’s Educational Reform Commission – implementation of certain parts of the Charter School Subcommittee’s report, including the transfer of unused schools to charter schools.  The bill had a hearing with comments from the audience.  The bill is undergoing revisions.  An amended version of the bill will be presented at the committee meeting on Monday for consideration of a vote.


HB273 – Provide for daily recess for students in kindergarten and grades one through five.  This bill is still undergoing some revisions.  An amended version of the bill is expected to be on the agenda on Monday.


HB 114 – Prohibit school systems from excluding students in dual credit courses from valedictorian or salutatorian determinations.  DO PASS – Moves on to the Senate Rules Committee.


HB 246 – Repeal sunset provision of the annual fitness assessment program.  DO PASS – Moves on to the Senate Rules Committee.


HB 224 – This bill would allow certain students of military families to attend any school in a local school system.  DO PASS – Moves on to the Senate Rules Committee.


HB 463 – Establishment of a non-profit corporation to qualify as a public foundation for the Department of Early Care and Learning.  DO PASS – Moves on to the Senate Rules Committee.


The Senate Judiciary Subcommittee B gave a DO PASS to  HB 434, Eminent Domain; requirements that condemnations not be converted to any other than public use after 20 years.


The House Higher Education Committee Gave a DO PASS to SB 186, allows students who earned a high school diploma through dual coursework to be eligible for HOPE funds to receive their associate degree.


The Senate Finance Committee  did not hear:


HB 217 – Increase the amount of the aggregate cap on contributions to certain scholarship organizations.  The organizations provide student scholarships to attend private schools.


HB 237 – Allow for the establishment of a Public Education Innovation Funding Foundation to receive private donations for grants to public schools.


The Senate and House will convene on Thursday, March 16, 2017 at 10:00 a.m. for legislative day thirty five.


The Senate has only one education related bill on their agenda:

HB 268 –  Provide a time period for certification of election officials.


The House has only one education related bill on their agenda:

SR 224 – Create a Joint Study Committee on Storm Water Management.


The full House Education Committee will meet on Thursday, March 16, 2017 at 2 p.m.   At this time, there are only four bills on the agenda scheduled for hearing only*:

*HR 319 – Representative Epps – Boards of education; impose, levy and collect a one percent sales and use tax for maintenance and operation expenses of local school system; authorize.

*HB 500 – Representative Bentley – Local board of education; member holding office in violation of nepotism law; provide for vacancy.


Just added to the agenda this morning.

HR 354 – Representative Kendrick – Georgia Department of Education; develop and provide a list of training materials to increase awareness of mental health issues and disabilities

SR 192 Senator Wilkinson – General Assembly; election of local school superintendents; local boards of education by grand juries as alternative to appointment


 Bills may be added at the chairman’s discretion.


You can follow the progress of the bills we are tracking by clicking on the GSSA legislative tab at the GSSA website.  The bills we are monitoring that have crossed over but have not received a “DO PASS” from a committee, are listed under the work tab.  Those bills that have passed out of committee and are in the rules committee or in the full House and Senate can be found under the hot tab.  We are now tracking twenty-one bills under the hot tab.


After today’s session, there will only be five legislative days remaining.  The legislators will meet next week on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday.  The following week they will meet on Tuesday and Thursday.  Thursday, March 30th will be the 40th and last day of this session.

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