Monday, January 31, 2011

Labor Day Bill + VEA Bill Advances

The last day of January was an interesting one at the General Assembly.

First, in an unexpected development, a Labor Day bill granting Roanoke City a waiver from the mandatory post Labor Day school opening passed the House Education Committee on a 14-8 vote. Republican Delegate Cleaveland did an excellent job of presenting the bill, HB1483, and his Democratic Roanoke Valley neighbor, Delegate O. Ware, offered able support, pointing out that the city’s children were at a disadvantage in competing with their Roanoke County neighbors, as the county starts school two weeks before Labor Day, and both localities have to give the SOL tests at the same time. I think the dam is breaking – doing away with the Labor Day Bill statewide is looking like a possibility in the years ahead.

A bill on VEA’s legislative agenda, Senator Barker’s SB1031, was reported from the Senate Committee on Education and Health Subcommittee on Public Education on a 5-0 vote! This is the bill to allow school boards to retain unspent funds at the end of the fiscal year rather than having them revert to the city council or board of supervisors.

Please check your email, you should have a cyber-lobby alert.