Education Mandate Act

Date: 2010


March 9, 2010
RE: AN ACT to amend the education law and the general municipal law in relation to enacting the education mandate relief act of 2010
                                                              S 5523-A Oppenheimer
                                                                     A 10130 Paulin
                                                         MEMORANDUM IN SUPPORT
Unshackle Upstate, a bi-partisan coalition of over 70+ business and trade organizations representing a growing group of 45,000 companies and employing more than 1 million people support the enactment of the aforementioned bill. This legislation would make numerous corrections to current law to alleviate mandates on school districts.
In particular, this bill would allow for a school district to delay the implementation of mandates that impose additional costs upon that school district for one year if the mandate is created after the adoption of the school's budget. In addition, this legislation authorizes school districts to enter into shared transportation services contracts, provided that the representative school boards deem it cost appropriate. Another provision of the bill would require boards of cooperative educational services (BOCES) to convene committees of school and community leaders in each BOCES region to recommend options for school district consolidation and shared services and issue a report to the Commissioner of Education by July 1, 2011.
One thing is very clear; our state needs to do a much better job of seeing a return investment on our education spending. According to The Public Policy Institute of New York State, in 2006-2007, New York State spent more money per pupil than any other state in the nation, but ranked 45th in nation for average SAT scores of graduating high school seniors in 2008.
Unshackle Upstate has been a major proponent of implementing policies that will save the state's taxpayers and property owners money. This bill would make numerous and much needed corrections to New York's education system that will eliminate some unnecessary burdens on school districts that have been a source for wasted taxpayer dollars. The implementation of these changes, would allow school districts to save money and allocate their appropriate resources toward programs designed to educate our children.
For these reasons, Unshackle Upstate supports the enactment of this legislation.