senate Bill S2759

Amended

Establishes a temporary commission to examine and review the degree of segregation in primary and secondary schools

download pdf

Sponsor

Bill Status


  • Introduced
  • In Committee
  • On Floor Calendar
    • Passed Senate
    • Passed Assembly
  • Delivered to Governor
  • Signed/Vetoed by Governor
view actions

actions

  • 01 / Feb / 2011
    • REFERRED TO FINANCE
  • 04 / Jan / 2012
    • REFERRED TO FINANCE
  • 07 / Mar / 2012
    • AMEND AND RECOMMIT TO FINANCE
  • 07 / Mar / 2012
    • PRINT NUMBER 2759A

Summary

Establishes a temporary commission to examine and review the degree and effect of segregation in primary and secondary schools and any correlation with school funding and the long-term impact of inadequate education on segregated students.

do you support this bill?

Bill Details

See Assembly Version of this Bill:
A2895
Versions:
S2759
S2759A
Legislative Cycle:
2011-2012
Current Committee:
Senate Finance
Law Section:
Commissions
Versions Introduced in Previous Legislative Cycles:
2009-2010: S5045, A3750
2007-2008: S2119, A4150

Sponsor Memo

BILL NUMBER:S2759

TITLE OF BILL:
An act creating a temporary state commission to examine the degree and
effect of segregation in primary and secondary schools; and providing
for the repeal of such provisions upon expiration thereof

PURPOSE OR GENERAL IDEA OF BILL:
Authorizes the state department of education to investigate the degree
and effect of segregation in New York's primary and secondary schools,
and make subsequent recommendations to the governor and legislature.

SUMMARY OF SPECIFIC PROVISIONS:
Section 1 of this bill establishes the commission within the education
department. This section also outlines the powers of the commission to
appoint a director and staff, to conduct investigations, to conduct
hearings, to subpoena witnesses, administer oaths, and procure documents
as deemed relevant to an investigation, and to submit their findings to
the governor and legislature.

Section 2 sets the rules by which the members of the commission shall be
appointed, and by which vacancies may be fulfilled; and the term limits
of such members.

Section 3 provides for the reimbursement of reasonable expenses by
members of the commission.

Section 4 enables the commission to obtain cooperation from all bodies
within the state government.

JUSTIFICATION:
Segregation within public schools has been a problem that state govern-
ments have been trying to eliminate for decades. More than fifty years
have passed since the Supreme Court decided the landmark case of Brown
v. Board of Education. There still remains a high degree of racial sepa-
ration in many of New York's public schools. According to information
based on The 2003 Civil Rights Project conducted by Harvard University,
A MULTIRACIAL SOCIETY WITH SEGREGATED SCHOOLS: ARE WE LOSING THE DREAM?
New York State ranks number one in the most segregated states for black
students' category.

Segregation likely contributes to the resultant inequality in funding
and educational achievement gaps seen in many minority school districts.

The establishment of a temporary, state-supported, nonpartisan commis-
sion will serve to address this critical issue directly. The commissions
powers will enable it to bring specific incidents of segregation to the
attention of the governor and state legislature, and recommend legisla-
tive action should a detailed investigation prove such action to be
necessary. By doing such, the state will have taken a major step in
ensuring an equal opportunity for all of its students to be educated.

PRIOR LEGISLATIVE HISTORY:
2009-10: A.3750/S.5045 - Referred to Assembly Education/Senate Finance
2007-08: A.4150/S.2119 - Referred to Education/Senate Finance
2005-06: A.1793A/5987 - Referred to Assembly Education Committee/
Senate Finance
2004: A.8402A/A.6090 - Reported to Ways and Means/Senate Finance

FISCAL IMPLICATIONS:
To be determined.

EFFECTIVE DATE:
July 1, 2011, with provisions.

view bill text
                    S T A T E   O F   N E W   Y O R K
________________________________________________________________________

                                  2759

                       2011-2012 Regular Sessions

                            I N  S E N A T E

                            February 1, 2011
                               ___________

Introduced  by  Sen. HASSELL-THOMPSON -- read twice and ordered printed,
  and when printed to be committed to the Committee on Finance

AN ACT creating a temporary state commission to examine the  degree  and
  effect  of segregation in primary and secondary schools; and providing
  for the repeal of such provisions upon expiration thereof

  THE PEOPLE OF THE STATE OF NEW YORK, REPRESENTED IN SENATE AND  ASSEM-
BLY, DO ENACT AS FOLLOWS:

  Section  1.  There is established within the department of education a
temporary state commission to examine and review the  degree  of  segre-
gation  in  primary and secondary schools; here and after referred to as
the commission. The  commission  shall  have  the  following  functions,
powers and duties:
  a.  To  appoint an executive director who shall act in accordance with
the policies of the commission. The commission may delegate authority to
the executive director to act in the  name  of  the  commission  between
meetings  of  the  commission provided such delegation is in writing and
the specific powers to be delegated are enumerated;
  b. To appoint such other staff as  are  necessary  to  carry  out  its
duties under this section;
  c.  To  conduct investigations in connection with: the level of segre-
gation in New York's primary  and  secondary  schools;  any  correlation
between  segregation  and  inadequate  school funding; and the long-term
economic  impact  of  inadequate  educational  resources  on  segregated
students and society;
  d.  To  make  an annual report to the governor and the legislature not
later than July first of each year which shall include  its  recommenda-
tions.  The  commission  shall  make such further interim reports to the
governor, or to the governor and legislature, as it  shall  deem  advis-
able, or as shall be required to do by the governor, the temporary pres-
ident of the senate or the speaker of the assembly;

 EXPLANATION--Matter in ITALICS (underscored) is new; matter in brackets
                      [ ] is old law to be omitted.
                                                           LBD06442-01-1

S. 2759                             2

  e.  To  conduct  any  investigation  authorized by this section at any
place within the state; and to maintain offices, hold meetings and func-
tion at any place within the state as it may deem necessary;
  f. To conduct private and public hearings and to designate one or more
members of the commission or of its staff to preside over any such hear-
ings; and
  g.  To  administer  oaths  or affirmations, subpoena witnesses, compel
their attendance, examine them under oath or affirmation and require the
production of any books, records, documents or  other  evidence  it  may
deem relevant or material to an investigation.
  S  2.  The  commission  shall  consist  of ten members, to be known as
commissioners to be appointed as follows: Two members of the  commission
shall  be  appointed  by the governor, two by the temporary president of
the senate, two by the minority leader of the senate, two by the speaker
of the assembly and two by the minority leader of the assembly, each  to
serve  a  three year term. No more than five members shall belong to the
same political party. No member or employee of the commission shall hold
any other public office or public employment  and  no  member  shall  be
employed  as a lobbyist. The governor shall designate the chairperson of
the commission from among the members thereof, who shall serve as chair-
person at the pleasure of the  governor.  The  chairperson  or  any  six
members  of  the commission may call a meeting. Any vacancy occurring on
the commission shall be filled within 60 days of its occurrence  in  the
same  manner  as  the  original appointment. A vacancy in the commission
shall not impair the right of the remaining members to exercise all  the
powers  of the commission. A person appointed to fill a vacancy shall be
appointed for the unexpired term of the member he or she  succeeds.  Six
members  of  the commission shall constitute a quorum and the commission
shall have power to act by majority vote of the total number of  members
of  the  commission  without  vacancy.  Members of the commission may be
removed by the governor for substantial neglect of duty,  gross  miscon-
duct in office, inability to discharge the powers or duties of office or
violation  of  this  section, after written notice and opportunity for a
reply.
  S 3. The members of the commission shall not receive compensation  but
shall  be reimbursed for reasonable expenses incurred in the performance
of their official duties.
  S 4. The commission may request and shall receive from  every  depart-
ment,  division, board, bureau, commission or other agency of the state,
or of any political subdivision thereof, cooperation and  assistance  in
the performance of its duties.
  S  5.  This  act shall take effect July 1, 2011 and shall expire March
31, 2014, when upon such date the provisions of this act shall be deemed
repealed.

Comments

Open Legislation comments facilitate discussion of New York State legislation. All comments are subject to moderation. Comments deemed off-topic, commercial, campaign-related, self-promotional; or that contain profanity or hate speech; or that link to sites outside of the nysenate.gov domain are not permitted, and will not be published. Comment moderation is generally performed Monday through Friday.

By contributing or voting you agree to the Terms of Participation and verify you are over 13.