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Advocacy Alert: 2016 Legislative Wrap Up

June 23, 2016

Earlier today, the NYSSBA Governmental Relations team conducted a webinar discussing the end of the 2016 legislative session and how your school district could be impacted.

We discussed what bills state lawmakers passed, what bills they did not, and what business was left unfinished. Highlights of the discussion included:

  • APPR
  • Lead Testing and Remediation
  • Property Tax Cap
  • Education Tax Credit
  • Veterans Property Tax Exemption

Statement of New York State School Boards Association Executive Director Timothy G. Kremer on the end of session

FOR RELEASE: June 20, 2016

CONTACT: David Albert
(518) 783-3716 or (518) 320-2221 cell

The 2016 legislative session brought many positive changes for public education. 

Lawmakers provided funding for lead testing and remediation in school drinking water. Protecting the health and safety of students and staff is every school board's highest priority. 

Advocacy Alert: 2016 Session Comes to a Close

June 18, 2016

Early this morning (5:00 am in the Assembly, 4:00 am for the Senate) the legislature gaveled out for what was the close of the 2016 legislative session.

NYSSBA’s Governmental Relations team was there until the end as we saw action on a number of significant issues for school districts across New York. Over the next several days, we will conduct a thorough analysis of the actions of the legislature, but highlights of some key issues are below:

Call to Action: Tell Your Legislators to Reject New Building Level Data Requirements

June 17, 2016

Late last night a new proposal emerged that would require all districts state wide to comply with numerous new reporting requirements, including the development and provision of extensive building level budget data.

Please call your legislators immediately and tell them that districts already have a clear and transparent budget process, including school report cards, property tax report cards and a host of other financial reports.

21-year-old board member from Northern NY named winner of Champion for Change award

FOR RELEASE: June 17, 2016

CONTACT: Al Marlin
(518) 783-3723 or (518) 527-6933 cell

The winner of the New York State School Boards Association's 2016 Champion for Change Award is a 21-year-old school board member who spearheaded initiatives in the Belleville-Henderson school district while simultaneously earning a bachelor’s degree at Cornell University.

John “J.W.” Allen has had a perfect attendance record at board meetings, held twice monthly, despite the fact that he had to drive four hours each way from Ithaca to Belleville, which is located near Watertown.

Regents advance new grad option for students with disabilities

On Board Extra Online • June 13, 2016

Cathy Woodruff
Senior Writer

The Board of Regents today advanced a plan to empower local school superintendents to approve local diplomas for some students with disabilities, even if they do not pass all required Regents exams, as long as they pass the courses leading to the exams.

The new "superintendent review option" would take effect as a provisional regulation in time for some students to graduate this month. It is expected to join three existing graduation options for students with disabilities to graduate with local diplomas.

Call To Action: Only Four Days Remain to Act on APPR Legislation

June 13, 2016

Assembly Education Chair Catherine Nolan (D-Queens) and Speaker Carl Heastie (D-Bronx) and 90 of their colleagues have introduced legislation (A.10569) that would amend current law to allow districts to operate under approved Annual Professional Performance Review (APPR) plans that are compliant with either section 3012-d, adopted in 2015, or 3012-c. Under current law, districts that do not have an approved 3012-d plan in place by September 1, 2016 risk losing their 2015-16 and 2016-17 state aid increases. If adopted, this legislation would allow districts to continue to operate under 3012-c until September 1, 2019 and maintain their aid increases. This legislation has been introduced in the Senate by Senator Kaminsky (S.8034).

NYSSBA has called for this kind of flexibility throughout the legislative session and will continue to advocate for this legislation through the final days. Urge the legislature to advance this important legislation immediately.

Advocacy Alert: Senate Introduces Tax Cap Amendments

June 10, 2016

This week, the Senate introduced legislation that, if enacted, would implement three NYSSBA supported changes to the current tax cap. S.8049 would:

  • Exempt BOCES capital costs from the tax levy limit
  • Include properties under PILOT agreements in the tax base growth factor
  • Limit the impact of voter-submitted propositions on the school budget vote

Federal agencies study crumb rubber in turf

On Board Online • June 13, 2016

By Cathy Woodruff
Senior Writer

Whenever students are playing soccer or football or almost any outdoor sport in New York these days, the chances are good that they are running, kicking and tackling on a field of artificial turf containing recycled crumb rubber.

The tiny bits of rubber, which often saw action in a prior life as part of a tire, are among the most popular turf ingredients for schools, colleges and professional sports teams throughout the country seeking a durable alternative to grass for their athletic fields.

Legislators seek APPR flexibility

On Board Online • June 13, 2016

By Julie M. Marlette
Director of Government Relations

School districts would be able to keep their state aid increases for 2015-16 and 2016-17 without adopting new teacher evaluation plans under an Assembly bill sponsored by Education Committee Chair Catherine Nolan (D-Queens) and backed by 92 majority members, including Speaker Carl Heastie (D-Bronx).

Under A.10569, districts could evaluate personnel under any state-approved Annual Professional Performance Review (APPR) plan until Sept. 1, 2019.

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