Is change coming to a school district’s capital outlay fund?
The question gained credence at Thursday’s Senate Agriculture and Natural Resources committee meeting when Sen. Larry Rhoden took his turn at testifying in favor of Senate Bill 8, but instead of lobbying for the bill focused on his issues with capital outlay. SB 8 was eventually killed by committee.
“We (legislature) have continued to chip away at capital outlay,” Sen. Rhoden said. “Our capital outlay system is broke.”
Sen. Rhoden’s main complaint with capital outlay was that it created a system of inequity among school districts. Not all public school districts are able to utilize capital outlay funds.
At this time, only House Bill 1001 addresses the capital outlay fund. The bill calls for the steady reduction in the percentage of capital outlay funds a district can flex to help offset general funds until the flexibility provision expires in 2018. ASBSD opposes the bill. Legislators voted to extend the capital outlay flexibility provision during last year’s legislative session.
At Thursday’s committee meeting, Sen. Rhoden said he’s been told Gov. Dennis Daugaard plans to “take the steps to resolve the issue.”
ASBSD will continue to monitor legislation or any proposal that could affect capital outlay. We encourage school board members to contact their legislators and tell them the importance of Capital Outlay in their district.