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March07

On the fly

That three word title fits the final two days of legislative action as bills will be passed or killed and the final budget figures will be put together.   State aid   The current budget proposal includes a three percent increase for school districts. A three percent increase would set the per-student allocation for the
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March07

Afternoon Update

Legislators have been locked in conference committee meetings and two different full floor sessions so far today, which has produced interesting developments.   Here’s a rundown of conference committee decisions:   Senate Bill 15: Conference committee members increased the special education levies to a maximum of $1.552 per thousand dollars of valuation and state aid
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March07

Critical Needs scholarship approved

Senators gave the final push to Senate Bill 233, which establishes a critical needs teaching scholarship and creates a trust fund program for student’s working towards a teaching degree in a critical needs curriculum area.   On a 35-0 vote, the Senate passed an amended version of SB 233 with $1.5 million attached. The bill
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March07

Off to see the Governor

Three bills with important implications for K-12 education are headed to Gov. Dennis Daugaard’s desk for final approval after Representatives and Senators voted to pass conference committee recommendations.   Senate Bill 28: The amended version of the bill adjusting general fund property tax levies for school districts passed the House and Senate by 62-5 and
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March06

One-time funding bills come and go

Senate sends on one-time funding   Senators passed a bill that appropriates one-time dollars for education on a 33-0 vote.   House Bill 1137 would appropriate $5.8 million to K-12 education, which would equal approximately $45 per student, $200,000 to CTE programs and $250,000 for the Teach for America program.   House Appropriations committee members
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March06

News and Notes from Tuesday night

Levy bill hoghoused   Senators hoghoused House Bill 1239 on a 28-5 vote on Tuesday.   The original version of HB 1239 would have authorized school districts to set a tax levy at 30 cents per thousand dollars of taxable valuation for pension and health insurance funding purposes. ASBSD supported the bill.   The hoghoused
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March05

News and notes from House Appropriations

ELL funding bill survives   In a matter of hours, Senate Bill 159 received a reprieve.   Appropriators initially deferred the bill, which provides school districts with increased state aid for each Limited English Proficiency student, because there’s a provision in the recently hoghoused Senate Bill 235.   Committee members decided later in the hearing
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March05

Funding front and center in final week

The final week of legislative session got underway on Monday without a major decision made.   Last week, State Economist Jim Terwilliger and LRC Chief Fiscal Analyst Fred Schoenfeld presented appropriators with an updated picture of state revenue and a decision was expected on which set of projections to adopt. Appropriators, however, postponed the decision
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March05

Economic development bill’s effect on education

The bipartisan bill aimed at enhancing economic development in South Dakota had its first hearing on Monday in front of the House State Affairs committee.   Senate Bill 235 would create the Building South Dakota fund, which would in turn establish the Workforce Education fund.   Thirty percent of the dollars in the Building S.D.
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March05

Cap. Outlay extension approved

Members of the House of Representatives voted 52-17 to pass Senate Bill 194, which extends the provision allowing school districts to use capital outlay funds for certain insurance, energy, utilities and motor fuel costs to 2018.   “This is clearly an essential bridge as we work through these troubling economic times,” Rep. Scott Ecklund (25)
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