Assembly Speaker Robin Vos (R-Rochester) and Senate Majority Leader Scott Fitzgerald (R-Juneau), the leaders of each house of the Wisconsin Legislature, today announced the formation of a Blue Ribbon Commission on School Funding to be chaired by Sen. Luther Olsen (R-Ripon) and Rep. Joel Kitchens (R-Sturgeon Bay) (pictured at left from the Legislative Advocacy Conference). WASB Government Relations Director Dan Rossmiller has been appointed to the commission.
The press release announcing the formation of the commission indicates, “The commission will hold its first meeting this month. Beginning next year, the commission will travel around the state conducting public hearings to learn more about school funding issues in Wisconsin. Recommendations will be given to legislative leaders before the end of the session.” Continue reading Legislative Leaders Announce Blue Ribbon Commission on School Funding
State Senator Alberta Darling (R-River Hills), co-chair of the Joint Finance Committee (JFC), told UpFront with Mike Gousha that the committee plans to take up K-12 education on August 28. It was not clear if she meant on Monday, Aug. 28 or that week as committees typically do not meet on Mondays. We will keep you up to date here as more information becomes available.
See our previous posts on the most recently released negotiated positions, the impact on school districts of increasing sparsity aid vs. increasing the low revenue ceiling and the possible effects of a late state budget on schools. Continue reading Co-Chair: Budget Committee Plans to Take Up K-12 Aug. 28
Typically, the state Legislature’s budget-writing Joint Finance Committee (JFC), comprised of eight senators and eight representatives, begins its review of the governor’s budget in February and completes its work in late May or early June. Then comes floor debate in the two houses and the completed budget is sent to the governor for his review and signature (or vetoes). If all goes well, this process is completed by July 1.
This year, however, the JFC not only hasn’t completed its review, it hasn’t met publicly since June 15, and it isn’t clear when the committee might meet again to wrap-up its work on the state’s two-year taxing and spending blueprint. Continue reading State Budget Remains Stalled—What’s Holding It Up?
The Assembly Co-Chair of the state’s budget-writing Joint Finance Committee (JFC) said today in a press conference that state Assembly and state Senate leaders are making progress in closed-door meetings on K-12 provisions in the state budget. Rep. John Nygren (R-Marinette, pictured) said the meetings were productive and he thought they could come to agreement rather quickly. Along with Rep. Nygren, Assembly Speaker Robin Vos (R-Rochester) and Rep. Mary Felzkowski (R-Irma) also participated in the negotiations on the Assembly side. Wispolitics.com reported that Senate Majority Leader Scott Fitzgerald (R-Juneau) and Senate JFC Co-Chair Alberta Darling (R-River Hills) were also involved in the meetings.
Rep. Nygren said he was hopeful that K-12 funding would be taken up by JFC next week. We have previously posted on the competing K-12 plans each house has been advocating for: Details Emerge on Senate GOP K-12 Plan; Assembly GOP Releases Sweeping K-12 Funding Plan; New Assembly School Funding Proposal Creates State Budget Impasse
The Legislature’s budget-writing Joint Finance Committee (JFC) has dropped plans to meet tomorrow (June 6). Assembly and Senate Republican caucuses have hit an apparent impasse on major unresolved pieces remaining in the budget, including pre-K-12 funding, transportation and taxes, according to the offices of the JFC co-chairs and reported by Wispolitics.com in an email to subscribers. Rumors of an impasse were heard late last week and spread as the week began and no JFC meeting notices were posted. JFC had previously planned to meet Tuesday (June 6) and Thursday (June 8) this week.
According to Wispolitics.com, Senate JFC Co-chair Alberta Darling (R-River) Hills, said she is still hopeful the committee can convene later this week; however, she said an Assembly GOP proposal unveiled late last week to tinker with Gov. Scott Walker’s K-12 education funding proposal has added a new area of division for the two houses, which were already at odds over transportation funding. Continue reading New Assembly School Funding Proposal Creates State Budget Impasse
The Co-Chairs of the Legislature’s powerful budget-writing Joint Finance Committee (JFC) have announced they will work off of Governor Walker’s budget proposal in all areas with the exception of the Department of Transportation.
State Sen. Alberta Darling (R-River Hills) & state Rep. John Nygren (R-Marinette) also announced the removal of non-fiscal policy items from the budget, including the governor’s proposal to eliminate the required minimum hours of instruction for public schools. Continue reading Budget Committee Co-Chairs: We’ll Work From Governor’s K-12 Budget
A bill to repeal the existing state statute that prohibits Wisconsin public school districts from beginning the school term prior to Sept. 1 has been introduced as Assembly Bill 103.
The bill has been referred to the Assembly Education Committee chaired by state Rep. Jeremy Thiesfeldt (R-Fond du Lac).
No information is available at this time on when the bill may be scheduled for a public hearing. Continue reading School Start Date Bill Introduced