Legislative Update


Friday, February 6 Marks Day 15 of the 2009 Session






The Governor introduced several pieces of legislation this week, including

HB 278Rep. Matt Ramsey (R-Peachtree City) – would give local systems more funding control by waiving expenditure controls for media centers, staff and professional development, and instructional costs for the 08-09 and 09-10 school years.

HB 280Rep. Brooks Coleman (R-Duluth), Chair of the House Education Committee – provides for salary increases for fully certified math and science teachers.

HB 282Rep. Brooks Coleman  – would provide for 10% bonus for teachers receiving  Master Teacher Certification on and after June 30, 2010; and the PSC would establish criteria for a Distinguished Teacher Leader Certification.








This week, the Senate Appropriations Education Subcommittee reviewed the FY 09a and FY 10 budgets.  Highlights discussed included the removal of funds for the school nurses and the National Board Certification programs.  Legislators continue searching for funds for these and other important school programs.  No decisions have been made by House or Senate members on either budget at this time.

The House Appropriations Education Subcommittee will meet next week to finish discussions on the FY 09a budget and will hear public testimony.  At this time, there are no scheduled hearings on the FY 10 budget next week.






HB 243Rep. Jimmy Pruett (R-Eastman) – HB 243 corresponds with the Governor’s 2010 budget request to discontinue funding for teachers with National Board Certification.  This legislation would “…repeal the salary increase for persons receiving certification form the National Board for Professional Teaching Standards…”  There is no effective date in the legislation.

—  In talks with Rep. Howard Maxwell (R- Dallas; third signer on the bill), as late as yesterday afternoon, it sounds as though no decision has been reached regarding this issue.  We will continue to talk with legislators to determine overall support or opposition of this issue.  We understand that passage of this legislation would affect some in your membership.  If you find that this legislation impacts you, please contact your local legislators as soon as possible.  It could make all the difference!


SB 90Sen. Eric Johnson (R- Savannah) – SB 90 is Sen.
Johnson’s third attempt at voucher legislation (you may remember SB 10 – Special Needs vouchers – that passed two years ago).  This bill would permit parents and students to select the school within their district they would like to attend.  It would also allow students to attend the school of their choice outside of their district, as long as the school accepts the student.

All of the legislation listed above await hearings on both the House and Senate sides.  

Currently, there are over 120 Senate bills and 330 House bills.  This year, issues range from school board management/requirements to tax exemptions, and from PE and student physical fitness assessments to creating more flexibility in the 180 day school year.  If there is a specific topic you are interested in learning more about, please let us know.






Earlier today you received breaking news coverage that the General Assembly voted to split the 40-day session, meeting three days a week through March 25th and then convening for Day 36 of the 40 day session on June 27th. The legislature believes that adjusting the calendar will give the General Assembly and the budget offices time to incorporate funds that may or may not trickle down to Georgia from the federal stimulus package into the amended FY 2009 and FY 2010 budgets.

To read more about the decision, click here.

We will continue to update you on the Governors legislation and other hot issues under the Gold Dome.  We will also keep you posted on any further changes to the 2009 Georgia General Assembly calendar and the FY 09a and FY 10 budgets.

Until next week, stay tuned…

Lasa Joiner

Michelle Crider


Posted on February 8, 2009, in Communications. Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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