PUBLIC HEARING: SB 550 A, SB 819 A  

 

TAPE 156-157, A-B

 

HOUSE REVENUE COMMITTEE

MAY 6, 2003   8:30 AM   STATE CAPITOL BUILDING

 

Members Present:                        Representative Lane Shetterly, Chair

                                                Representative Wayne Scott, Vice Chair

                                                Representative Joanne Verger, Vice Chair

                                                Representative Phil Barnhart

                                                Representative Vicki Berger

                                                Representative Pat Farr

                                                Representative Mark Hass

                                                Representative Elaine Hopson

                                                Representative Max Williams                                               

 

Witness Present:                        Senator Devlin, District 19

                                                Dr. William A. Korach, Lake Oswego School District

                                                Ozzie Rose, Confederation of Oregon School Administrators

                                                John Marshall, Oregon School Boards Association

                                                Representative Macpherson, District 38

                                                Jim Scherzinger, Superintendent, Portland Public Schools

                                                Laurie Wimmer Whelan, Oregon Education Association                                                                               Kathryn Weit, Oregon Counsel on Developmental Disabilities

                                                Brian Reeder, Department of Education

 

Staff Present:                            Paul Warner, Legislative Revenue Officer

                                                Steve Meyer, Legislative Revenue Office

                                                Kathy Tooley, Committee Assistant

 

TAPE 156, SIDE A

 

055

Chair Shetterly

Calls meeting to order at 8:45 a.m.

 

OPENS PUBLIC HEARING ON SB 550-A AND SB 819-A

 

070

Steve Meyer

Provides description of SB 550 which creates a High Cost Disabilities Grant and increases grants for high transportation cost districts. Exhibit 1. Provides description of SB 819 which increases the limit for the amount of school local option tax revenue excluded from school local revenue in the school equalization formula and allows districts with small high schools to merge and maintain the extra student weight for small schools for four years Exhibit 2. . Notes that it has a subsequent referral to Ways and Means and discusses revenue impact. Exhibit 3.

 

 

 

125

Senator Devlin

States that both bills have strong support from the Senate. Discusses history of local options. Testifies in support of SB 819-A because it is a modest adjustment to a much needed local option and it gets rid of the disincentive for small high schools to merge. Points out that it is not a solution to school funding, but a tool for districts to solve part of the problem.

 

 

 

209

Dr. William Korasch

Spoke in favor of 819A because it gives school districts options while they wait for a statewide solution.  Discusses the Lake Oswego school district. Refer to written testimony. Exhibit 4.

 

 

 

350

Rep. Verger

Asks what kind of salary increases the Lake Oswego school district will be giving.  

 

 

 

355

Korasch

Responds that teachers will be getting 3.5% increase due to a contract signed 3 years ago.

 

 

 

375

Rep. Verger

Asks if it is possible to ask teachers to take a decrease.

 

 

 

377

Korasch

Responds that they are in those negotiations, but can’t discuss them presently.

 

 

 

368

Ozzie Rose

Testifies in favor of SB 819 because it gives districts options and gives an incentive to merge small schools. Testifies in favor of SB 550 and discusses task forces on special education and small schools. Points out that none of these are solutions, but rather tweaks to the formula that help. Suggests that they raise the bar for reimbursement of special education students so that everything above $25,000 per student is reimbursed and that there is a sunset so that the legislature will have to revisit the issue.

 

TAPE 157, SIDE A

 

035

Chair Shetterly

Asks if anyone is working on an amendment.

 

 

 

037

Rose

Responds that he has had meetings and that someone was supposed to be thinking about it, but he isn’t sure.

 

 

 

043

Rep. Farr

Asks if everything above $25,000 would be reimbursed.

 

 

 

045

Rose

Responds positively.   

 

 

 

052

Rep. Farr

Asks if he suggests a two-year sunset.

 

 

 

053

Rose

Responds affirmatively.

 

 

 

055

Rep. Berger

Asks what they would be trying to determine if they sunset the bill and bring it back in 2005.

 

 

 

058

Rose

Responds that they need to determine how effectively the bill addresses the problems with the formula.

 

 

 

067

Rep. Barnhart

Asks if this bill would likely not affect most schools, except for small school districts that have 1 or 2 high cost students.

 

 

 

073

Rose

Responds affirmatively.

 

 

 

083

Rep. Verger

States that every child is the same in the eyes of the legislature and anything to encourage giving more money to one school district creates discrepancy in the level of education offered. Asks where allowing local options will lead them in the future.

 

 

 

111

Rose

Responds that the ideal situation would be to fund schools adequately so that every school district received what it needed. States that local options do create differences and that there should be restrictions on how much is allowed. Testifies that SB 819 is an acceptable amount.

 

 

 

137

Rep. Verger

Expresses concern that increasing local options will prevent further statewide solutions.

 

 

 

160

Rose

Agrees that they should be trying to solve the greater problem, but points out that they aren’t capable of solving the greater problem right now and that by making these adjustments, it will make things a little better.

 

Discussion follows.

 

 

 

177

Rep. Farr

Asks if there has been any discussion on sun setting SB 819 in order to put pressure on the Legislature to come up with a universal solution.

 

 

 

185

Rose

Responds that he has not heard any discussion.

 

 

 

190

Rep. Barnhart

Asks if the local option tax is the increment amount between Measure 5 and Measure 50.

 

 

 

198

Rose

Responds affirmatively.

 

 

 

202

Rep. Barnhart

Asks how many school districts this applies to.

 

 

 

208

Rose

Responds that he doesn’t know.

 

Discussion follows.

 

 

 

212

John Marshall

Discusses the task forces on special education and small schools and how SB 550 attempts to change the formula to reflect the differing needs of school districts. Offers support for SB 819 because school districts are different and there should be some ability to connect those needs back to the local community. Discusses the history of the local option and the changes due to the current economic situation. States that the state has equalized resources but that equity, which means that every child has equal access to educational programs, has not been achieved. Explains the small high school merger incentive.

 

 

 

395

Rep. MacPherson

Testifies in support of SB 819 because the funding formula has moved school districts away from their local community and that this would in some measure restore that connection.

 

TAPE 156, SIDE B

 

022

Rep. Barnhart

States that this bill will not affect most communities and asks if any districts in Rep. MacPherson’s legislative district would benefit from this bill.

 

 

 

039

Rep. MacPherson

Responds positively and discusses the Lake Oswego school district.

 

 

 

047

Rep. Hopson

States that she will support the bill, but asks about kids that live in communities that don’t want to tax themselves.

 

 

 

070

Rep. MacPherson

Responds that equalization to provide for all children is good, but questions whether it is desirable to move toward such strict uniformity that there is no reflection on the differences and aspirations of school districts.

 

 

 

077

Chair Shetterly

States that he is not concerned that anyone would mistake SB 819 for the “big fix”.

 

 

 

087

Jim Scherzinger

Testifies in support of SB 550 and SB 819.  States that the high need special ed bill is a move toward better equalization.  States that Portland Public Schools’ special education costs were much higher than what they were allocated. Discusses mandates that require the state to provide services, creating an increased proportion of spending on special ed in local districts.

 

 

 

130

Rep. Barnhart

Asks if SB 550 would result in a net increase in state funding to the Portland Public School District.

 

 

 

133

Scherzinger

Responds affirmatively.

 

 

 

135

Chair Shetterly

Asks if the transportation grant piece would reduce funding?

 

 

 

144

Scherzinger

Responds affirmatively and discusses net gains and losses.

 

Discussion follows.

 

 

 

155

Laurie Whimmer

Whelan

Offers support of both bills because they are good policy rationales. Points out that SB 819 would keep pace with inflation and the original intent of the local option bill. Discusses history of local options. States that these bills combined are a compromise and not a substitute for a decent budget or long-term solution. Expresses concern that without these bills, districts will lose some of their biggest supporters to private schools.

 

 

 

224

Katheryn Weit

Testifies in support of SB 550. Discusses drivers for the high cost of special education students and the need for additional data. Supports putting a sunset on the bill.

 

 

 

267

Rep. Verger

Expresses support for the small high school merger incentive and asks if that could also help with the problem of declining enrollment schools by providing full funding over a period of four years until they are able to adjust.  

 

 

 

285

Wimmer Whelan

Responds that it is a possibility.

 

 

 

292

Brian Reeder

Offers support for both bills.  Discusses the uncertainty of the amount of local option that could be raised. Gives examples of different school districts.

 

Discussion follows. 

 

 

 

389

Rep. Hopson

Asks for the numbers of high cost students and small high schools would be affected.

 

 

 

395

Reeder

Responds that he doesn’t have numbers with him.

 

Discussion follows.

 

404

Reeder

Points out that SB 819 doesn’t have a big effect now because of the Measure 5 limit.

 

TAPE 157, SIDE B

 

002

Meyer

Discusses revenue impact of SB 550 and the estimates for the school transportation grant. Exhibit 5. Discusses the K-12 special education estimates. Exhibit 6.

 

CLOSES PUBLIC HEARING ON SB 550 A and SB 819 A

 

059

Chair Shetterly

Meeting adjourned at 10:06 a.m.

 

 

 

 

 

Tape Log Submitted by,

 

 

 

Kathy Tooley, Committee Assistant Tara Lantz, Committee Assistant

 

Exhibit Summary:

1.       SB 550 A, Steve Meyer, Staff Measure Summary, 1p.

2.       SB 819 A, Steve Meyer, Staff Measure Summary, 1p.

3.       SB 819 A, Steve Meyer, Revenue Impact Statement, 1p.

4.       SB 819 A, William Korach, Written Testimony, 4pp.

5.       SB 550 A, Steve Meyer, Revenue Impact Statement, 3pp.

6.       SB 550 A, Steve Meyer, K-12 Special Education Estimates, 1p.