BILL ANALYSIS                                                                                                                                                                                                    



                                                                  AB 169
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          Date of Hearing:   March 16, 2011

                           ASSEMBLY COMMITTEE ON EDUCATION
                                Julia Brownley, Chair
                  AB 169 (Torres) - As Introduced:  January 20, 2011
           
          SUBJECT  :   Education finance

           SUMMARY  :   Requires the State Board of Education (SBE) to 
          include school districts, county offices of education (COE), and 
          other agencies deemed eligible pursuant to state and federal law 
          in any application for federal aid to education, in any 
          allocation of federal funds made pursuant to law, and in any 
          rules and regulations adopted governing the allocation of those 
          funds.

           EXISTING LAW  

          1)Provides base funding by requiring the Superintendent of 
            Public Instruction to make prescribed calculations for the 
            apportionment of state aid to local educational agencies.

          2)Establishes and funds categorical programs that focus 
            resources and/or compliance requirements on specific classes 
            of students or schools, or on specific uses of funds, 
            identified by the Legislature as priorities.

          3)Authorizes the allocation and apportionment of federal funds 
            to recipients for use as specified in federal and state law.

          4)Requires the SBE to make timely application for federal 
            education funds and to direct the allocation of federal funds 
            to local education agencies.

           FISCAL EFFECT  :   In a substantially similar bill carried by this 
          author in the prior session, the Assembly Appropriations 
          Committee found that the bill created no additional state 
          General Fund/Proposition 98 administrative costs.

           COMMENTS  :   This bill proposes to require the SBE to include COE 
          and other agencies, where eligible, in any application for 
          federal aid to education, in any allocation of federal funds 
          currently made to school districts, and in any rules and 
          regulations adopted governing the allocation of those funds.  
          The California Department of Education reports that there are no 








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          instances where federal education funds are currently made 
          available to school districts, but not to COE or other agencies, 
          unless there is federal or state statute requiring that 
          differentiation; this is true despite there being no current 
          statutory requirement on the inclusion of COE or other 
          educational agencies.  This bill would thus codify current 
          practice and continue to ensure that all eligible educational 
          entities are included in federal funding opportunities available 
          to the state.

          According to the author, "County offices of education play a 
          vital role in providing educational programs and services for 
          students, parents, school districts and the community.  Often 
          the students served by county offices of education are at-risk 
          students.  AB 169 will ensure that county offices are not 
          inadvertently left out when federal funds are allocated."

          Current law set in the code sections amended by this bill, 
          regarding the SBE making applications for federal funds or 
          allocating those funds, include references to "school 
          districts", "local education agencies," and "local school 
          districts and other agencies entitled to receive federal funds 
          for the support of schools."  These different references do not 
          appear to be related to any substantive difference in the 
          treatment of those agencies in terms of the application for or 
          allocation of federal funds; in fact, these terms are used in an 
          ambiguous and interchangeable manner throughout these sections 
          of code.  Since these code sections exist the context of the 
          Legislature's authorization of the state's full participation in 
          Federal Programs and Interstate Agreements, since the federal 
          government generally focuses education funding on schools and 
          students rather than on school districts, county, or regional 
          education agencies (note that the federal government has to take 
          a one-size-fits-all approach to local education governance in 
          order to deal with varied organizational models across the 
          states), and since these sections of the code have remained 
          unclear since being enacted in AB 3100 (Greene), Chapter 1010, 
          Statutes of 1976 (which implemented a complete revision of the 
          education code), it can be concluded that the proposal made in 
          this bill (to have the students and schools under the 
          administration of COE and other agencies included in 
          applications and eligible for the receipt of federal funds, 
          unless specifically excluded) is consistent with the intent of 
          the Legislature stated in the Education Code sections amended by 
          this bill.  Given this conclusion, this bill also serves a 








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          technical purpose in that it reconciles existing ambiguous and 
          seemingly interchangeable references to "school districts" and 
          "local education agencies" in existing law, and thus clarifies 
          that school districts, county offices of education, and all 
          other educational agencies deemed eligible are required to be 
          considered by the SBE when any application or allocation of 
          federal funds is being made.

          Committee amendments: In order to conform with the intent of the 
          Legislature that all eligible educational entities be included 
          in any application for federal aid to education, in any 
          allocation of federal funds made pursuant to law, and in any 
          rules and regulations adopted governing the allocation of those 
          funds, Committee staff recommends that the bill be amended to 
          clarify that "school districts," as used in this article 
          "include school districts, county offices of education, and 
          other  educational  agencies  or entities  deemed eligible pursuant 
          to state and federal law."

          Previous legislation:  AB 339 (Torres), vetoed in 2010, was 
          substantially similar to this bill.  AB 3100 (Greene), Chapter 
          1010, Statutes of 1976, implemented a complete revision of the 
          education code, including the statute related to which 
          educational entities would be included by the SBE in any 
          applications for or allocations of federal education funds.

           REGISTERED SUPPORT / OPPOSITION  :   

           Support 
           
          California County Superintendents Educational Services 
          Association
          Los Angeles County Office of Education
          Monterey County Office of Education
          Riverside County Superintendent of Schools

           Opposition 
           
          None on file
           
          Analysis Prepared by  :    Gerald Shelton / ED. / (916) 319-2087 












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