Utah Legislative Session, Week 4
Monday, Feb. 22, 2010
- HB 114(S1), Disclosure of Donations, by Rep. Carl Wimmer, would require higher education institutions to annually disclose to the Board of Regents donations or gifts of 50,000 dollars or more from foreign persons. Rep. Wimmer introduced his substitute bill which is more workable for higher education institutions, and it passed the House on Thursday by a vote of 56-13. It is scheduled to be heard by the Senate Education Committee on Monday.
- HB 134, Education Donation Tax Credit, by Rep. Evan Vickers, creates a non-refundable tax credit for donations to public K-12 and higher education institutions. No action on this bill.
- HB 194, Grants for Math Teacher Training, by Rep. Brad Last, provides the State Office of Education $250,000 to use for grants to public or non-profit higher education institution to provide math teaching training to individuals who are not currently teachers but who have already earned a bachelor’s degree. Still being held in House Rules Committee, likely due to fiscal impact.
- HB 410, Hazing Policies for Higher Education Institutions, by Rep. Carol Moss, has been introduced by short-title only. Text should be added this week.
- HB 428, Nonresident Tuition Amendments, by Rep. Richard Greenwood, has been introduced by short title only without text. However, it is expected to be similar to bills introduced in previous years to repeal the law that allows Utah high school graduates who cannot prove legal immigration status to be eligible for resident tuition.
- HJR 24, Resolution on Equal Treatment by Government, by Rep. Curtis Oda, is a proposed constitutional amendment promoted by national activist Ward Connerly who has advanced similar measures in other states to prevent certain types of Affirmative Action. Was scheduled to be voted on Tuesday morning, but the sponsor held it. It is not certain when or if this will be brought to the floor for debate and a vote.
- SB 35*, Capital Facilities Bonds Amendments, by Sen. Wayne Niederhauser, allows the USU Agriculture Science Classroom Building to move forward as separate buildings — one funded by the federal government and the other by the state. Still being held in Senate Rules Committee.
- SB 42, 43 & 94 Retirement Amendments, by Sen. Dan Liljenquist, is a package of bills to make some dramatic changes to the State Retirement System, affecting future retirees. While the goals are sustainability, the impacts may be far-reaching. Approximately one-third of higher education employees participate in this system. SBs 43 and 94 passed 2nd Reading in the Senate on Thursday and are waiting final Senate consideration. SB 63 passed the Senate on Friday and now goes to the House.
- SB52(S1), State Board of Regents Amendments, by Sen. Dennis Stowell, would require changes in the composition of the Board of Regents to provide greater rural representation by having two Regents from counties that are not Metropolitan Statistic Areas according to the U.S. Census Bureau. The Senate Education Committee approved 6-1 on Thursday and it now goes to full Senate.
- SB 55, Authorization of Charter Schools by Higher Education Institutions, by Sen. Stuart Adams, would allow college and university boards of trustees, at their option, to authorize charter public schools. It has passed the Senate and will be heard in the House Education Committee Monday afternoon.
- SB 69(S1)*, College of Eastern Utah Affiliation with USU, by Sen. David Hinkins, was unanimously approved a week ago by the Senate Education Committee, and is awaiting Senate votes, likely this week.
- SB 95(S1)*, UESP Amendments, by Sen. Wayne Niederhauser, makes technical and housekeeping amendments to statutes governing UESP. It has passed both houses unanimously and is awaiting governor’s signature.
- SB 132*, Higher Education Scholarship Amendments, by Sen. John Valentine, tightens eligibility for the New Century Scholarship program and makes technical changes to it and to the Regents’ Scholarship. The major changes to New Century are adding, effective next year, a requirement for a 3.5 GPA. The bill passed the Senate unanimously.
- SB 171, Higher Education Retirement Amendments, by Sen. Dan Liljenquist, would allow a window for current higher education employees to transfer to the Utah Retirement System.