2015 Legislative Update For Week of 2/9/15
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Weekly Update


SB119 gets 'do pass'

Rollover Bond moves to Senate Floor

Senate Bill 119, introduced by Senators Becky Harris and Ben Kieckhefer, is a bill combining two items: a rollover of an existing 10-year general obligation bond and the removal of prevailing wage requirements for school construction and maintenance projects. The bill was heard at a meeting of the Senate Committee on Government Affairs on Wednesday and drew a large but divided crowd.

Testimonials during the hearing showed almost universal support for the bond portion, but prevailing wage was divided. Members of HOPE were present and submitted testimony in favor of the bond rollover. In keeping with our goals, HOPE stayed neutral and did not take a position on prevailing wage.

The Senate Committee on Government Affairs held a second meeting to vote on SB119 on Friday and the bill received a "do pass" from the committee. It will go to the Senate Floor next for debate and a final vote.

Why our need for a bond is so critical:
  • A general obligation bond is the ONLY current mechanism school districts have for new school construction and refurbishment of existing schools. Schools cannot be built from districts' operating budgets. Clark County's last successful school construction bond was passed in 1998 and the district has grown by approximately 90,000 students over the last 15 years. Looking ahead, we are projected to have 20,000 additional students by 2020.
  • Schools across our state are in desperate need of maintenance, reliable water, air conditioning, and power, as well as the technology needed for administering Nevada's new student assessments.
  • Our schools are so overcrowded, CCSD could fill to capacity 26 new elementary schools if built today.
  • CCSD has 13 year-round schools that are 60 percent over capacity and it currently utilizes thousands of portables. Additionally, 61 schools are on the year-round watch list for the 2015-2016 school year.

HOPE's goal is to keep members informed of legislative issues that pertain to our platform. We'll let you know when a bill is in committee and when it's time to let our lawmakers know what we want. Keep an eye on your inbox each Monday for our Weekly Update.

Coming up this week:

  • Tuesday, Feb. 10 at 3:30 p.m.
    SB25, sponsored by the Department of Education, allows the State Board to set up additional end-of-course testing, and clarifies school accreditation governing bodies, along with other topics. The meeting, heard before the Senate Education Committee, is video conferenced live to Room 4412 of the Grant Sawyer State Office Building, 555 E. Washington Ave., or you can watch a live stream from your computer here.

The spotlight
on policy change

HOPE's Top 5 List

What does HOPE want? We want to see change in areas that will improve the chances of a better education for our current and future students. Our platform is broad and inclusive:
  • Pre-K for at-risk children
  • Universal full-day Kindergarten
  • Embedded and collaborative Professional Development
  • Funding Formula reform and a Stabilization Account
  • Rollover bonds for school construction and refurbishment

The voice
for our children

We all need HOPE!

HOPE is guided purely by the goal to provide the best education possible for all students in the state. Our parent advocacy group formed in 2014 to fill the void where family and community involvement was largely missing. Our membership allows us to offer a unified voice representing families and community members all over Southern Nevada. It also helps educate and inform local and state level decision-makers and legislators on specific needs of students and teachers in Clark County and beyond.

Please share HOPE with your friends and ask them to sign up to become a member today on our web site at www.hopefornevada.org. With your support, we will always have HOPE for Nevada's students!

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