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Education Finance

FIFTEENTH MEETING

2021-2022 Regular Session - February 11, 2021

STATE OF MINNESOTA FIFTEENTH MEETING
MN HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES NINETY SECOND SESSION

EDUCATION FINANCE
MINUTES

Representative Jim Davnie, Chair of the Education Finance Committee, called the virtual meeting to order at 10:30am on February 11, 2021 pursuant to House rule 10.01. The meeting is being broadcast via Zoom and House Public Information Services.

The Committee Legislative Assistant noted the roll.

Members present:

DAVNIE, Jim
SANDSTEDE, Julie
KRESHA, Ron
BENNETT, Peggy
DANIELS, Brian
DEMUTH, Lisa
DRAZKOWSKI, Steve
ERICKSON, Sondra
FEIST, Sandra
JORDAN, Sydney
MARQUART, Paul
MUELLER, Patricia
RICHARDSON, Ruth
THOMPSON, John
WOLGAMOTT, Dan
XIONG, Tou
YOUAKIM, Cheryl

A quorum was present.

Rep. Xiong moved that the minutes from February 10, 2021 be approved. Motion prevailed.

HF 292 (Frazier) Under current law, a school board may conduct an election to approve additional operating revenue. The referendum revenue program, often referred to as the operating referendum levy or the excess levy referendum, is a mechanism that allows a school district to obtain voter approval to increase its revenue beyond the limits set in statue. An amount per pupil, not to exceed the statewide referendum cap, may be approved by the voters and added to the district’s general education revenue. The term of an operating referendum may not exceed 10 years. An operating referendum is a partially equalized aid and levy. For the 2020-2021 school year, 230 school districts have an approved referendum raising a total of $726 million, with about $35 million paid in state equalization aid while the remaining $691 million comes from local property taxes. The levy share is calculated and shared on referendum market value, which is a tax base that excludes agricultural lands and seasonal recreational properties. HF 292 proposes to allow expiring referendum authority to be renewed by school board action as long as the per pupil authority is not increased and the term of renewal is no longer than the current term.

Rep. Xiong moved that HF 292 be presented before the committee; be laid over for further consideration at a later time.

Rep. Frazier presented HF 292.

Rep. Xiong renewed the motion that HF 292 be laid over for further consideration at a later time. The bill was laid over.

HF 683 (Olson) Local school districts are required by state law to provide appropriate and necessary special education to children with disabilities from birth through 21 years of age. School districts receive state aid and a relatively small amount of federal aid to pay for special education services. If these funds are insufficient to pay for the costs of the programs, school districts must use other general fund revenue. Minnesota’s special education formula is a multistep formula. The formula combines a cost-reimbursement formula with a modified “census style” of funding, provides a floor of funding based on fiscal year 2016 funding amounts, and authorizes serving school districts and charter schools to bill a portion of their unfunded special education costs attributable to nonresident students back to the student’s resident school district. HF 683 adjusts the fiscal year 2016 base year used to calculate special education revenue for Independent School District No. 709, Duluth. The bill also appropriates an additional $1 million per year of special education funding for the Duluth school district.

Rep. Youakim moved that HF 683 be presented before the committee; be laid over for further consideration at a later time.

Rep. Olson presented HF 683.

Rep. Youakim renewed the motion that HF 683 be laid over for further consideration at a later time. The bill was laid over.

Testifiers:
John Vento, School Board Director, Robbinsdale Area Schools
Chris Lennox, Superintendent, Mounds View Public School
Jeff Elstad, Superintendent, Owatonna Public Schools
John Magas, Superintendent, Duluth Public Schools
Cathy Erickson, Chief Financial Officer, Duluth Public Schools


The meeting of the Education Finance Committee was adjourned 11:17am.


______________________________________________
More Info On This Meeting..
Bills Added:
  • HF683 (Olson) - Independent School District No. 709, Duluth; special education revenue adjusted; base adjustment created, supplemental special education aid authorized, and money appropriated.
  • HF292 (Frazier) - School districts authorized to renew expiring referendums by school board action.
House TV Video:
View Archive

04:02 - HF 292 (Frazier) School districts authorized to renew expiring referendums by school board action.
34:23 - HF 683 (Olson) Independent School District No. 709, Duluth; special education revenue adjusted; base adjustment created, supplemental special education aid authorized, and money appropriated.


HF 292 (Frazier) School districts authorized to renew expiring referendums by school board action.
HF 683 (Olson) Independent School District No. 709, Duluth; special education revenue adjusted; base adjustment created, supplemental special education aid authorized, and money appropriated.
*Other agenda items may be added.*

Public Testimony:
• If a member of the public wishes testify on HF 292 (Frazier) or HF 683 (Olson), please contact brittney.sunderland@house.mn and copy sarah.burt@house.mn by close of business (COB) the day prior to the hearing to get instructions. Clearly indicate the House File number you will be speaking to in the subject of your email.
• Written testimony is welcome, please see the template saved under permanent committee documents and submit your comments by COB the day prior to the committee by emailing them to: sarah.burt@house.mn

This remote hearing is taking place pursuant to Rule 10.01, which you may view here:
https://www.house.leg.state.mn.us/cco/rules/permrule/1001.htm

This remote hearing may be viewed via the House webcast schedule page: https://www.house.leg.state.mn.us/htv/schedule.asp NOTE: HTV 1 and HTV 2 will provide live closed captioning. Video archives of meetings streamed on HTV 3, 4, and 5 will have closed captions added. Other reasonable accessibility accommodations may be made with advance notice.

If you have questions about the accessibility of remote hearings or require an accommodation, please contact Jenny Nash at: jenny.nash@house.mn or by leaving a message at 651-296-4122. Please do not contact her with questions about the substance of the meeting agenda.