May 19 update: All three bills passed out of appropriations committees.
Another major legislative deadline is looming on May 18 as the fiscal committees in each house consider their suspense file: a list of bills with a price tag of over $150,000 that are considered together in order to weigh their overall fiscal impact. Suspense hearings are conducted at one time, providing a singular opportunity to address bills with significant financial price tags and even some politically difficult bills. Ultimately, some legislation may be “held on suspense,” meaning the bill will die in the Appropriations Committee.
Three CSBA-sponsored bills have been placed on the suspense file and are waiting to be considered in the Senate or Assembly Appropriations Committees:
- Assembly Bill 483 (Muratsuchi, D-Torrance): Would increase funding for and expand access to school-based health and mental health services by improving and streamlining the Medi-Cal Local Education Agency Medi-Cal Billing Option Program (LEA BOP).
- Senate Bill 551 (Portantino, D-Glendale): Would enhance the collaboration between county mental health agencies and school districts by requiring at least 20 percent of a county mental health board’s membership to be employed by a local educational agency and at least 20 percent to be an individual who is 25 years of age or younger, with scaled requirements based on county size.
- SB 765 (Portantino): Would waive the 180-day mandatory waiting period LEAs must observe before hiring a recently retired teacher and increase the maximum grant award for the Teacher Residency Grant Program from $25,000 to $40,000 per teaching candidate.
As these three bills await their fate, several more CSBA-sponsored measures are already moving forward:
- AB 417 (Bennett, D-Ventura): Would expand the authority of county boards of education to appoint a student school board member by addressing a loophole in current law — in cases where a COE does not receive a student petition to create a student board member, the board may only select a student enrolled at a local district high school, not a student enrolled in a high school under the jurisdiction of the county board. AB 417 would allow students in high schools maintained by the county board of education an equal opportunity to serve on their governing board.
Passed the Assembly on March 30 and awaiting consideration in the Senate Education Committee.
- AB 1023 (Papan, D-San Mateo): Would require the California Cybersecurity Integration Center (Cal-CSIC), whose mission it is to help state and local agencies prevent and prepare for cyber security attacks, to also provide that support and guidance to LEAs and the California Department of Education. By specifically including LEAs as an academic institution under Cal-CSIC, it will ensure that LEAs receive information and guidance to address issues of cybersecurity and protecting student data and privacy.
Awaiting consideration on the Assembly Floor.