MREA has been especially busy this year advocating on behalf of Greater Minnesota schools. There are a series of bills in the air. Here’s a rundown of what they are by key issue and where they stand at the Capitol as of now. Each includes the bill authors and where possible, links to their text and status at the legislature.  View a print friendly version.

All policy bills must have their first hearing by March 20.  The Committee pace will increase throughout March. MREA is tracking and trying to influence about 30 topics/bills.  New bills are introduced daily.  Learn more about the MREA Platform

MREA Platform Issues

  1. Facility Fallout from inadequate facility maintenance revenue in 92% of Minnesota school districts
    1. Ag2School Long Term Maintenance Revenue & Equalization—moving from ANTC to RMV with Equalization
    2. Ag2School Tax Equity for Debt Service—an Ag Land Tax Credit/State tax to lower the peaks in debt payments
    3. Enhanced equalization for natural disasters, consolidating districts and high debt service SF 489 Dahle/HF 1147 Norton
    4. Debt service equalization at 125% of ANTC (Working Group recommendation) SF 490/ HF 784 Dahle/Norton
  2. Early Learning Expansion and Coordination
    1. Governor’s Four year old proposal HF 844/SF 811 Loon/Wiger
    2. School Readiness Expansion—HF 252/SF 155 Newton/Wiger
    3. Scholarships HF 1220 Kresha/SF NA
    4. ECFE Fund Balance Transfer SF 593/HF 996 Lourey/Sundin SF 333/ HF NA Lourey
  3. Quiet Teacher Crisis of teacher shortages
    1. MTLE empirically determined cut scores—Erickson
    2. Teacher Loan forgiveness— SF759 Jensen/HF 1170 Bennett
    3. TDE funding for 14/15 for Educational Cooperatives and Educational Districts HF 334/SF133 Bly/Dahle
    4. TDE funding for non-Qcomp districts annually—MASBO doing study of TDE costs SF 1124 Stumpf/ HF NA
    5. LIFO and other provisions of HF 2 Loon/SF 473 Pratt
    6. Out of State License clarification—SF 767 Jensen/HF 645 Kiel
    7. Districts making determination for licensure—SF 298 Stumpf/HF NA
    8. Ag teacher loan forgiveness— SF 1084 Jensen/HF880 P. Anderson
    9. BOT seats appointed by Economic Development Regions, Honorarium for BOT members–Erickson
  4. Secondary to Post Secondary and Career
    1. Rural STEM Experiential Learning Pilot Project— SF 471 Saxhaug/HF 555 Backer
    2. Concurrent Enrollment—SF 995 Clausen/ HF 1217 Davnie
  5. Support for AMI students; expansion of Success for the Future
  6. School Calendar—local control of learning year HF 100/SF 115 SF 162/HF 197 SF 288/HF 366 HF 925/Sf NA

Other Relevant Issues

  1. Formula
    1. 1&1 HF 844/ SF 811 Loon/Wiger to 3&3—Nienow
    2. LOR ideas; additional equalization for districts with high seasonal rec and high RMV
  2. Special Ed Paperwork documentation—requires districts to contract with vendors for seamless transference of records, repeals 125A.085 requiring MDE to contract for one vendor—HF 804 Christianson SF 740 Pratt
  3. HITA-the ability of school districts to bid for health insurance through cooperative purchasing processes
  4. School Transportation
    1. School transportation categorical— HF 40 Persell/SF 157 Saxhaug
    2. Rural Special Ed transportation—SF 382 Jensen/HF 380 Schomaker
    3. Transportation Sparsity—SF 741 Saxhaug / HF1389 Persell
  5. Proposed New Mandates
    1. PE and student physical assessments mandates SF 343/HF 448 Kent/Dettmer
    2. Counselor ratios SF 472/HF 552 Bonhoff/Gunther HF 605/ SF NA Newton
    3. Civics test requirement Urdahl HF1497/SF NA