Mary Gannon, Attorney
Emily Piper, Legislative Consultant
Insights from legislative leadership
Overview of IASB platform
Key issues and action needed
A few comments about
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Questions and Answers
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A Message from
Senator Majority Leader
Mike Gronstal, D, Council Bluffs
House Minority Leader
Kraig Paulsen, R, Hiawatha
Race to the Top (RTTT)
Memorandums of understanding due 1/14/10
Bills going through legislature to implement
IASB has concerns about one provision on
the lowest performing schools
State faces $1 billion shortfall
– Can make up about half by not restoring cuts,
using remaining stimulus funds
Nearly $1 billion in on auto pilot in state budget
There’s some talk of another federal stimulus
– Just delays the pain if economy doesn’t rebound
Fund 2% Allowable Growth-not sure what the
$100 million additional to make up cuts
Examine Revenue side of equation
– Determine value of credits to state, meeting original intent.
– State review committee - IASB testified and suggested:
Implement a sunset provision.
Examine whether credits still meet original intent.
Examine tax credits that benefit a small percentage of the
Ensure not providing public dollars to support private
education while cutting support to public schools.
Take a conservative approach to adopting new tax credits,
exemptions or deductions.
Outlook for legislative session
– Focus on money, not policy
Committee chairs told not to do bills that cost money
– Shorter session to save state money
– Target adjournment is 80 days
– Nationally, anti-incumbent attitude
Allowable Growth: our only priority
Key Issues for 2011 rate
– Maintain 2% growth rate
– Reduce state’s contribution rather than reduce
– PRESERVE SPENDING AUTHORITY
Key Issues for 2012 rate
– Delay setting 2012 rate until the next legislative
FY 2011: Maintain 2%
– Reducing the rate will limit spending authority even
though our costs go up.
– Maintaining spending authority allows us to respond to
FY 2012: Delay setting until next year
– Gives the state’s economy time to recover.
– Once established, it’s unlikely to go up.
– Consecutive years of low allowable growth rate are
tough to absorb.
Per Pupil Cost
Actual Allowable Actual State Cost Per Pupil Cost at Authority
Year Growth Rate Per Pupil 4 percent Difference
FY 2002 $ 4,512 $ 4,512
FY 2003* 1% $ 4,557 $ 4,692 $ 135
FY 2004 2% $ 4,648 $ 4,880 $ 232
FY 2005 2% $ 4,741 $ 5,075 $ 334
FY 2006 4% $ 4,931 $ 5,278 $ 347
FY 2007 4% $ 5,128 $ 5,489 $ 361
FY 2008 4% $ 5,333 $ 5,709 $ 376
FY 2009 4% $ 5,546 $ 5,937 $ 391
FY 2010 4% $ 5,768 $ 6,174 $ 406
FY 2011 2% $ 5,883 $ 6,421 $ 538
*In FY 2003, the legislature adjusted the previously established AG rate downward to 1 percent and
set two consecutive years of low AG at 2 percent per pupil. This chart shows the effect over time on
per pupil costs.
FY FY FY FY FY FY FY FY FY FY
2002 2003* 2004 2005 2006 2007 2008 2009 2010 2011
Actual State Per Pupil Cost Per Pupil Cost if AG Had Been 4 Percent
For a district with 1,000 students, the FY 2010 difference is $406,000
For a district with 1,000 students, the FY 2011 difference is $538,000
Key issue: Preserve ability of local school
districts to best manage their finances
– Cash reserves allowed will be lowered from 25% to
20% in 2013.
– Used for unanticipated expenses; delays in state aid,
property taxes; emergencies; across-the-board cuts.
– “Cash reserves” does not equal “spending authority.”
Key Issue: Protect the State Penny from efforts
to scoop for non-infrastructure expenses
– Many districts have already obligated this money.
– By allowing some districts to use the penny for non-
infrastructure purposes reinstates inequities eliminated
by the state penny as many won’t have the flexibility to
use the funds as it’s already committed.
– Eliminates some of the inequities in the school finance
Key Issue: Support recommendations of the
– 6% early retirement reduction penalty (from 3%)
– Vesting in 7 years (from 4 yrs)
– Benefit based on 5-yr average salary (from 3)
– Important tool to attract and retain workers.
– Some changes could cause exodus of experienced,
qualified workers and, in many cases, employees in
– Long-term viability needs to be addressed.
Key Issue: No new unfunded mandates on
– Increases costs at a time when funding is
– Forces districts to make choices between
mandates and educational offerings.
– Increases administrative, support staff time when
those positions are being reduced.
Shifting the AEAs to the DE
Key Issue: IASB opposes the proposal to eliminate
the AEA structure and move them under the Iowa
Department of Education.
– AEA structure provides regional educational
services to school districts.
– AEAs provide economies of scale that couldn’t be
matched by local districts or the DE.
– The major issue should be whether this change
will improve student achievement.
Key Issue: IASB believes school district reorganization,
dissolution or sharing may be in the best interests of
Iowa’s public school students when:
The best interest of students is the most important
The reorganization or dissolution is voluntary.
The state offers sufficient incentives to make the
change financially attractive.
Geographical issues are considered.
Legislative Advocacy Toolkit:
2010 Legislative Talking Points:
IASB Regional Lobby Days
IASB Legislative Update
IASB Lobby Team
– Mary Gannon, firstname.lastname@example.org
– Emily Piper, email@example.com
Make your voice heard & attend one of three lobby days!
January 19: AEA 267, Prairie Lakes, Mississippi Bend
February 16: Keystone, Great Prairie, Northwest
March 9, 2010: Grant Wood, Heartland, Loess Hills,
– 9:30 a.m. – Registration, Wallace Building auditorium
– 10 a.m. – Briefing, Wallace Building auditorium
– 11 a.m. - 1 p.m. – Lobby your legislators, Capitol
Thank you for participating and for all of the
advocacy work that you do. The best thing
you can do is to keep telling your stories, so
that legislators understand the implications to
real districts when they make their decisions.
This webinar will be available later at