S T A T E O F N E W Y O R K
2011-2012 Regular Sessions
I N S E N A T E
January 5, 2011
Introduced by Sens. MONTGOMERY, DILAN, HASSELL-THOMPSON -- read twice
and ordered printed, and when printed to be committed to the Committee
AN ACT to amend the education law and the state finance law, in relation
to establishing a temporary emergency educational fund to provide
assistance to underfunded school districts; and providing for the
repeal of such provisions upon the expiration thereof
THE PEOPLE OF THE STATE OF NEW YORK, REPRESENTED IN SENATE AND ASSEM-
BLY, DO ENACT AS FOLLOWS:
Section 1. Legislative intent. The legislature hereby finds that
decades of experience have shown that the state's current school funding
system has consistently underfunded hundreds of public schools across
the state. Currently the state is involved in a school finance lawsuit
(CAMPAIGN FOR FISCAL EQUITY, ET AL. V. THE STATE OF NEW YORK, ET AL.) in
which the constitutionality, sufficiency and social impact of the
state's school funding system are at issue. Unfortunately, it could take
years before the case is ultimately resolved. Meanwhile, time marches
on and millions of schoolchildren continue to attend public schools
which lack the resources needed to prepare them for productive citizen-
ship in the twenty-first century. These children, caught between legal
and political crossfire, are being denied the monetary, educational,
psychological and social resources they desperately need, and as a
result are being irreparably harmed.
The legislature declares that this act addresses the need to protect
students from the potentially irreparable harm they are exposed to due
to a severe lack of educational resources in public schools. According-
ly, this act seeks to provide emergency funding for critical educational
resources to benefit the millions of children who cannot wait until
protracted legal disputes are resolved before receiving the tools they
need in order to meet resource-driven academic standards.
EXPLANATION--Matter in ITALICS (underscored) is new; matter in brackets
[ ] is old law to be omitted.
S. 312 2
S 2. The education law is amended by adding a new article 73-A to read
TEMPORARY EMERGENCY EDUCATIONAL
SECTION 3650-F. DEFINITIONS.
3650-G. TEMPORARY EMERGENCY EDUCATIONAL ASSISTANCE.
S 3650-F. DEFINITIONS. FOR THE PURPOSE OF THIS ARTICLE, THE FOLLOWING
TERMS SHALL MEAN:
1. "FUND" SHALL MEAN THE TEMPORARY EMERGENCY EDUCATIONAL FUND ESTAB-
LISHED PURSUANT TO SECTION NINETY-ONE-H OF THE STATE FINANCE LAW.
2. "SOUND BASIC EDUCATION" SHALL MEAN THOSE FOUNDATIONAL SKILLS THAT
PUBLIC SCHOOL STUDENTS NEED TO BECOME PRODUCTIVE CITIZENS CAPABLE OF
CIVIC ENGAGEMENT AND SUSTAINING COMPETITIVE EMPLOYMENT, AS DETERMINED
PURSUANT TO THE RULES AND REGULATIONS OF THE COMMISSIONER.
S 3650-G. TEMPORARY EMERGENCY EDUCATIONAL ASSISTANCE. 1. IN ADDITION
TO ANY MONEYS A SCHOOL DISTRICT SHALL RECEIVE PURSUANT TO ARTICLE SEVEN-
TY-THREE OF THIS TITLE, THE COMMISSIONER SHALL APPORTION SUCH ADDITIONAL
FUNDING TO SCHOOL DISTRICTS AS SHALL BE NECESSARY TO ENABLE ANY SUCH
DISTRICT TO PROVIDE A SOUND BASIC EDUCATION TO STUDENTS.
IN ALLOCATING FUNDS PURSUANT TO THIS SECTION, A SCHOOL DISTRICT SHALL
GIVE PRIORITY IN THE FOLLOWING ORDER: (I) FIRST, TO A SCHOOL UNDER
REGISTRATION REVIEW; (II) SECOND, TO ANY SCHOOL PERFORMING SIGNIFICANTLY
BELOW STATE STANDARDS AS DEFINED BY THE COMMISSIONER; AND (III) THIRD,
TO ANY SCHOOL THAT IS DETERMINED BY THE COMMISSIONER TO NEED EMERGENCY
FUNDING TO ADDRESS A SEVERE LACK OF EDUCATIONAL RESOURCES.
2. MONEYS IN THE FUND SHALL BE APPORTIONED TO SCHOOL DISTRICTS WHICH
MEET THE CRITERIA SET FORTH IN SUBDIVISION ONE OF THIS SECTION TO BE
USED BY SUCH DISTRICTS FOR THE FOLLOWING PURPOSES:
(A) THE EMPLOYMENT OF A SUFFICIENT NUMBER OF QUALIFIED TEACHERS, PRIN-
CIPALS AND OTHER EDUCATIONAL PERSONNEL;
(B) THE REDUCTION OF CLASS SIZES;
(C) THE CONSTRUCTION, RENOVATION, REPAIR AND MAINTENANCE OF ADEQUATE
AND ACCESSIBLE SCHOOL BUILDINGS WITH SUFFICIENT SPACE TO ENSURE APPRO-
PRIATE CLASS SIZES AND IMPLEMENTATION OF A SOUND CURRICULUM;
(D) THE ACQUISITION OF EDUCATIONAL RESOURCES, INCLUDING BUT NOT LIMIT-
ED TO, TEXTBOOKS, SCHOOL LIBRARY BOOKS, CLASSROOM SUPPLIES AND EQUIP-
MENT, LABORATORY EQUIPMENT, REMEDIAL PROGRAMS, AND EDUCATIONAL TECHNOLO-
GY SUCH AS COMPUTERS, THE RELATED HARDWARE AND APPROPRIATE SOFTWARE;
(E) THE PROVISION OF SUITABLE CURRICULA; AND
(F) THE PROVISION OF RESOURCES FOR STUDENTS WITH EXTRAORDINARY NEEDS.
3. (A) MONEYS FROM THE FUND SHALL BE APPORTIONED THROUGH A COMPETITIVE
PROCESS THAT TAKES INTO CONSIDERATION THE SEVERITY OF SHORTAGE OF EDUCA-
TIONAL RESOURCES NECESSARY TO PROVIDE A SOUND BASIC EDUCATION. MONEYS
APPORTIONED PURSUANT TO THIS SECTION SHALL BE USED ONLY FOR THE PURPOSES
ENUMERATED IN THIS SECTION.
(B) NOT MORE THAN SIXTY PERCENT OF THE FUNDS ALLOCATED PURSUANT TO
THIS SECTION SHALL BE MADE AVAILABLE TO ANY ONE SCHOOL DISTRICT.
(C) ANY SCHOOL DISTRICT RECEIVING FUNDS UNDER THIS SECTION SHALL MAIN-
TAIN ANY LOCAL EFFORT IN THE CURRENT YEAR EQUIVALENT TO SUCH EFFORT IN
THE BASE YEAR FOR ANY LOCAL PROGRAM THAT HAS PURPOSES THAT ARE SIMILAR
TO ANY PURPOSE OF THIS SECTION OR THE DISTRICT SHALL PROVIDE A LOCAL
MATCH TO STATE FUNDS RECEIVED PURSUANT TO THIS SECTION. STATE FUNDS
PROVIDED PURSUANT TO THIS SECTION SHALL NOT SUPPLANT LOCAL FUNDS FOR ANY
PURPOSE SIMILAR TO THE PURPOSES OF THIS SECTION.
S. 312 3
4. APPLICATIONS BY A SCHOOL DISTRICT FOR FUNDING PURSUANT TO THIS
SECTION SHALL BE FILED WITH THE COMMISSIONER, IN A FORM DETERMINED BY
THE COMMISSIONER, BY JUNE FIRST OF THE BASE YEAR AND SCHOOL DISTRICTS
SHALL BE NOTIFIED OF THEIR AWARD OF TEMPORARY EMERGENCY ASSISTANCE BY
JUNE THIRTIETH OF THE BASE YEAR, PROVIDED THAT IN ANY YEAR SUCH APPLICA-
TION AND AWARD DATES MAY BE MODIFIED BY THE COMMISSIONER FOR THE REASON-
ABLE ADMINISTRATION OF THE PROGRAM. SUCH APPLICATION SHALL INCLUDE A
PLAN BY THE SCHOOL DISTRICT FOR THE EXPENDITURE OF THE FUNDS IN EACH
CATEGORY OF ALLOWABLE EXPENSES AUTHORIZED BY THIS SECTION, AND SUCH
EXPENDITURES SHALL BE CONSISTENT WITH SUCH PLAN AND THE PROVISIONS OF
THIS SECTION. SUCH APPLICATION SHALL ALSO INCLUDE A METHODOLOGY BY
WHICH THE SCHOOL DISTRICT WILL MONITOR THE EXPENDITURE OF ANY SUCH FUND-
ING AND ENSURE THAT SUCH FUNDING WILL IMPROVE THE EDUCATION PROVIDED BY
THE SCHOOL DISTRICT.
5. THE COMMISSIONER IS AUTHORIZED TO PROMULGATE ANY RULES AND REGU-
LATIONS NECESSARY TO IMPLEMENT THE PROVISIONS OF THIS SECTION.
S 3. The state finance law is amended by adding a new section 91-h to
read as follows:
S 91-H. TEMPORARY EMERGENCY EDUCATIONAL FUND. 1. THERE IS HEREBY
ESTABLISHED IN THE CUSTODY OF THE STATE COMPTROLLER A SPECIAL FUND TO BE
KNOWN AS THE "TEMPORARY EMERGENCY EDUCATIONAL FUND".
2. SUCH FUND SHALL CONSIST OF ALL MONEYS APPROPRIATED THERETO, AND ALL
OTHER MONEYS CREDITED OR TRANSFERRED THERETO FROM ANY OTHER FUND OR
SOURCE PURSUANT TO LAW, AND ALL MONEYS RECEIVED FROM CONTRIBUTIONS,
DONATIONS, GRANTS OR PAYMENTS FROM ANY SOURCE.
3. MONEYS IN THE TEMPORARY EMERGENCY EDUCATIONAL FUND SHALL BE KEPT
SEPARATELY FROM AND SHALL NOT BE COMMINGLED WITH ANY OTHER MONEYS IN THE
JOINT OR SOLE CUSTODY OF THE STATE COMPTROLLER.
4. THE MONEYS OF THE TEMPORARY EMERGENCY EDUCATIONAL FUND, AFTER
APPROPRIATION BY THE LEGISLATURE AND APPORTIONMENT BY THE COMMISSIONER,
SHALL BE PAID OUT BY THE STATE COMPTROLLER PURSUANT TO ARTICLE SEVENTY-
THREE-A OF THE EDUCATION LAW.
S 4. This act shall take effect immediately and shall expire and be
deemed repealed upon the final disposition of the cause of action enti-
tled "CAMPAIGN FOR FISCAL EQUITY, ET AL. V. THE STATE OF NEW YORK, ET
AL." and the establishment and full implementation of a school funding
system that funds every public school district in the state at a level
that enables such district to provide a sound basic education; provided
that the attorney general shall notify the legislative bill drafting
commission upon the occurrence of the final disposition of such cause of
action in order that such commission may maintain an accurate and timely
data base of the official text of the laws of the state of New York in
furtherance of effecting the provisions of section 44 of the legislative
law and section 70-b of the public officers law.