BILL ANALYSIS                                                                                                                                                                                                    




                                                                  SB 1380
                                                                  Page A
          Date of Hearing:   June 30, 2010

                           ASSEMBLY COMMITTEE ON EDUCATION
                                Julia Brownley, Chair
                    SB 1380 (Hancock) - As Amended:  June 22, 2010

           SENATE VOTE  :   35-0
           
          SUBJECT  :   School facilities:  career technical education  
          facilities

           SUMMARY  :  Requires school facilities constructed or modernized  
          using Career Technical Education Facilities program (CTEFP)  
          funds to be used for career technical education (CTE) purposes  
          for a minimum of 10 years.  Specifically,  this bill  :   

          1)Requires the governing board of an applicant school district  
            to submit a resolution adopted by the governing board stating  
            the intent to use the facilities built or modernized with  
            Proposition 1D funds set aside for the CTEFP for career  
            technical education purposes and provide certification that  
            the facility is being used for CTE purposes during the first  
            year of occupation of the school facility.

          2)Authorizes the governing board of a school district to seek a  
            waiver of the CTE use requirement from the SAB if the facility  
            or educational program of the school district changes during  
            the initial 10 years of use.

          3)Encourages a school district applying for a CTE grant to  
            include teachers of CTE and members of the local CTE advisory  
            committee in the design and planning process leading to the  
            submission of an application that is a request for full  
            funding or a reservation of funds.  

          4)Requires qualifying equipment purchased with CTEFP funds to  
            have a life expectancy of at least 10 years, except that up to  
            25% of the funds may be used for the purchase of items or  
            equipment with a life expectancy of at least five years.

           EXISTING LAW  :

          1)Establishes the CTEFP to provide funding to eligible local  
            educational agencies (LEAs) to construct or reconfigure  
            existing facilities, and to purchase equipment with an average  









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            useful life expectancy of at least 10 years.  

          2)Provides that grants shall be allocated on a per-square-foot  
            basis and shall not exceed $3 million per project per  
            schoolsite for a new construction project and $1.5 million per  
            project per schoolsite for a modernization project.  

          3)Provides that new construction grants shall only be allocated  
            to comprehensive high schools that have an active Career  
            Technical Advisory Committee and a clear and comprehensive  
            Career Technical Education plan.  Modernization grants may be  
            awarded to comprehensive high schools or joint power  
            authorities operating career technical education programs that  
            have an active Career Technical Advisory Committee.

          4)Requires a school district to contribute a 50% local match  
            that can be provided by private industry groups, the school  
            district, or a joint powers authority.  Provides that the SAB  
            shall not waive the local contribution for any basis,  
            including financial hardship.  

          5)Authorizes the SAB to allow a repayment schedule for the local  
            match consistent with the loan program established under the  
            Charter Schools Facilities Program.

          6)Establishes various CTE programs for public schools including  
            but not limited to regional occupational centers and programs  
            (ROC/Ps), partnership academies, adult education programs, and  
            CTE programs in high schools and community colleges.

          7)Requires the governing board of each school district  
            participating in a CTE program to appoint a career technical  
            education advisory committee to develop recommendations on the  
            program and to provide liaison between the district and  
            potential employers.

           FISCAL EFFECT  :  The Senate Appropriations Committee notes on the  
          prior version of this bill that while the bill's provision to  
          allow the purchaser of a limited amount of equipment with a life  
          expectancy of 5 years would increase the number of eligible  
          items, the bill's limitation on district discretion for use of  
          facilities for a minimum of 25 years may serve to discourage  
          district participation in the program, and actually serve to  
          reduce pressure on the bonds.  










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           COMMENTS  :  Current law establishes the School Facility Program  
          (SFP) under which the state provides general obligation bond  
          funding for various school construction projects, including new  
          construction, modernization, joint-use facilities, and programs  
          to specifically address the construction needs of overcrowded  
          schools, charter schools, and CTE facilities.  Proposition 1D,  
          authorized by AB 127 (Nunez and Perata), Chapter 35, Statutes of  
          2006, and approved by the voters in November 2006, provided $7.3  
          billion for kindergarten through grade 12 school facilities, and  
          established the CTEFP within the SFP, providing $500 million to  
          construct or modernize facilities and to purchase equipment with  
          an average useful life expectancy of at least 10 years for CTE  
          programs at existing comprehensive high schools.

          The CTEFP authorizes a grant of $3 million per project per  
          schoolsite for new construction projects and $1.5 million per  
          project per schoolsite for modernization projects.  The CTEFP  
          also requires a school district to contribute from local  
          resources a dollar amount equal to the amount of the state grant  
          provided and authorizes the contribution to come from private  
          industry groups, the school district, or a joint powers  
          authority.  The SAB is prohibited from waiving the local  
          contribution on any basis, including for hardship assistance.   
          However, the SAB may authorize a repayment schedule and a loan  
          similar to that provided under the Charter School Facilities  
          Program.  

          There are two funding options for CTEFP funds.  A LEA may  
          request full funding for a project that has already received  
          approval from the California Department of Education (CDE) and  
          the Division of State Architect (DSA)<1>, considered  
          "construction ready" projects.  Otherwise, it may request a  
          reservation of funds and have up to 12 months to obtain the CDE  
          and DSA approvals.  

           Current status of the CTEFP  .  According to the Office of Public  
          School Construction (OPSC), approximately $409 million of the  
          $500 million has been apportioned to fund approximately 455  
          ---------------------------
          <1> The SFP requires approval from CDE, to ensure that the  
          selected site and school specifications are safe and meet the  
          school's education plan, and the DSA, to ensure that the  
          architectural design plans meet fire, life and safety  
          requirements, Field Act requirements, and access requirements  
          under the Americans with Disability Act specified in law and in  
          state regulations.








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          CTEFP projects in the first and second cycles of funding.  A  
          total of $91 million remains in the program.  The deadline for  
          applications for the third cycle was March 31, 2010, with  
          applications totaling $231 million submitted.  OPSC anticipates  
          SAB approval at the end of the year.    

          According to the author, "Several issues have surfaced in the  
          past 2 and a half years which will benefit from legislative  
          review.  The Career Technical Education grant program is in need  
          of modification - more assurance that the classrooms built or  
          modernized with the funds are truly used for CTE in the future?"  
           The author further states that the equipment shelf life  
          requirement needs to be revised.  

          This bill specifies that facilities constructed or modernized  
          using CTEFP funds must be used for CTE program purposes for at  
          least 10 years.  None of the other programs (e.g., charter  
          schools, joint use) have similar requirements.  Presumably, the  
          purpose of this requirement is to ensure that districts are not  
          applying for these funds with the real intention of using them  
          for regular classrooms and to ensure the longevity of CTE  
          programs.  It is not known if any district has converted CTE  
          facilities funded by the CTEFP into regular classroom use.  

          Supporters would argue that the CTEFP was established to  
          encourage and enable the establishment of CTE programs, and as  
          such, districts should not be allowed to drop the programs  
          housed in facilities constructed with bond funds dedicated for  
          CTE programs for other facilities uses.  Research has shown that  
          CTE opportunities for pupils may provide relevance to the high  
          school curriculum and engage pupils who may be at risk of  
          dropping out.  Existing law establishes various CTE programs for  
          public schools including but not limited to ROC/Ps, partnership  
          academies, adult education programs, agricultural programs,  
          tech-prep programs, and CTE courses that may be offered in  
          secondary schools and community colleges.  

          The bill requires a local governing board interested in applying  
          for CTEFP funds to adopt a resolution stating its intent to use  
          the facilities for CTE purposes and if funded, requires the  
          governing board to certify its use during the first year of  
          occupation of the facility.  An argument can be made that the  
          value of CTE programs notwithstanding, the use of facilities  
          should not dictate the long-term educational program of a  
          school.  There could be unforeseeable factors in the future that  









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          may cause a district to discontinue a CTE program or course,  
          including increase or decrease enrollment, inability to secure  
          qualified CTE teachers, changes in the labor market and the  
          demand for certain types of training, or funding challenges.

          To address that concern, the bill authorizes a governing board  
          to seek a waiver from the SAB of the requirement to use the  
          facility for CTE purposes for 10 years if the facility or  
          educational program of the school district changes during that  
          time.  However, it is unclear what criteria will be used to  
          grant or reject a waiver.  Is a waiver granted simply upon  
          request by a governing board?  Will the SAB need to develop  
          regulations?  Is the SAB the most appropriate body to determine  
          whether a district must keep a facility and therefore the  
          educational program for CTE?  The CDE may be a more appropriate  
          entity to evaluate enrollment and programmatic needs.  Staff  
          recommends requiring the CDE to review the waiver request and  
          provide a recommendation to the SAB for final determination.   
          Staff also recommends establishing the following criteria for  
          consideration of a waiver:

          1)Enrollment changes;

          2)Enrollment changes in the CTE program;

          3)Changes in labor market demand;

          4)Inability to hire teaching staff with proper credentials;

          5)The district's fiscal conditions; and,

          6)Other factors presented by the LEA and deemed significant by  
            the SAB.

          The CTEFP authorizes funds to be used for equipment with a  
          10-year lifecycle.  This requirement has been a source of  
          complaint since the inception of the program.  Districts argue  
          that equipment for some CTE programs, such as broadcasting and  
          digital editing equipment or even specialized systems for  
          automotive repair programs, may not have a 10-year lifecycle,  
          but are necessary for the programs.  This bill authorizes  
          districts to use up to 25% of the funds for equipment purchases  
          to be used for equipment with a lifespan of at least five years.  
           Equipment for CTE programs may have extensive electronic  
          components and require high energy use.  Staff recommends  









                                                                  SB 1380
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          encouraging LEAs to purchase energy efficient and/or  
          environmentally preferable equipments, to the extent they are  
          available.  

          Another issue that has arisen is the appropriate entity to  
          evaluate the equipment.  Districts have expressed frustration  
          that equipment approved as part of the CDE approval process has  
          been rejected by the OPSC.  Equipment may be an integral part of  
          CTE programs.  Should evaluation of equipment, including whether  
          it meets the five or ten-year lifecycle requirement, be  
          conducted by the CDE rather than OPSC?  

          The bill's requirements apply to all CTEFP projects funded under  
          Proposition 1D, the Kindergarten-University Public Education  
          Facilities Bond Act of 2006.  Staff recommends deleting the  
          reference to Proposition 1D.  This bill's provisions should  
          apply to all CTEFP projects, regardless of the bond source.  

           REGISTERED SUPPORT / OPPOSITION  :

           Support 
           
          California Association of Leaders of Career Preparation
          California Association of Regional Occupational Centers and  
          Programs
            Small School Districts' Association
           
          Opposition 
           
          None on file

           Analysis Prepared by  :    Sophia Kwong Kim / ED. / (916) 319-2087