Madison Metropolitan School District
Madison, Wisconsin

Art Rainwater, Superintendent
Minutes for Legislative
November 3, 2003
Doyle Administration Building
545 West Dayton Street, Room 103
Madison, Wisconsin

The Legislative Committee meeting was called to order by Chair Ruth Robarts at 5:30 p.m.

BOARD MEMBERS PRESENT: Ray Allen (arrived 5:38 p.m.), Carol Carstensen, Ruth Robarts

CITIZEN MEMBERS PRESENT: Erica Rosch, Tim Saterfield




STAFF PRESENT: Jane Belmore, Mary Gulbrandsen, Steve Hartley, Joe Quick, Art Rainwater, Barbara Lehman-Recording Secretary

1. Approval of Minutes

It was moved by Carol Carstensen and seconded by Ruth Robarts to approve the Legislative Committee minutes dated January 14, 2002 as distributed. Motion unanimously carried by those present.

2. Public Appearances

There were no public appearances.

3. Announcements

There were no announcements.

4. Introduction of New Citizen Members

Ms. Rosch and Mr. Saterfield were introduced and explained why they chose to serve on the Legislative Committee.

5. Governor's Task Force on Educational Excellence

Joe Quick distributed a handout: "Governor Calls for Broad Look at Education Financing in First Meeting of Task Force on Educational Excellence" (a copy is attached to the original of these minutes).

Joe Quick noted that the Task Force has 29 members with a broad range of people from across the state. The Governor did not appoint any legislators to this Task Force hoping to get bipartisan support. Mr. Quick added that this may make the work of this Task Force a little more difficult and that the group would have to find a way to hook legislators into it. He referred to the handout stating the charge is broader than school funding issues. He hoped the District's issues would move to the front. The Task Force will raise the profile of school finance and the six items identified. There will be an opportunity for the District to tell its story to a broader range of people around the state. Mr. Quick will be attending the meetings and try to meet with several members of the Task Force. The Governor issued a caveat that he saw no money for new programs.

Ray Allen arrived at 5:38 p.m.

Discussion: A preliminary report is expected by the end of the year; hoping for early January or February. May be able to identify some non-controversial issues that could get through the spring legislative session. Governor wants a final report by June. Work will then begin on the 2005-07 budget. All proposals will be analyzed. Probably will function as a committee of the whole and not break down into subcommittees. First meeting of the Task Force indicated that they would be looking at a sales tax increase.

The Superintendent noted that almost every one of the issues has been litigated. Issues will be how much money there is going to be, where it comes from, and how it gets distributed equitably. Some of the proposals address only part of the problem.

6. Assembly Bill 183 - Revisions in the Youth Options Program

(Packets included the Wisconsin Legislative Council Amendment Memo on 2003 Assembly Bill 183 (copies are attached to the original of these minutes).

Joe Quick reviewed the history of the current law and how it works today. The problem for the district is that the program has grown so much and there are issues about some of the cases being taken, the cost to the district over time, and the amount of staff time used. The bill proposes to restrict the number of credits that districts have to offer. Districts will have to re-write their Youth Options policies. The legislature passed this bill 97-0 last week. A hearing will be held either in November or the middle of January.

Follow Up: Advise the committee members about updates via e-mail.

7. Planning for the December Meeting with the Madison State Legislative Delegation

In talking with some of the members of the Madison delegation, it was determined that an early morning meeting would yield the most attendance. The meeting is set for Tuesday, December 16, at 8 a.m., Doyle Building, Room 103. He indicated that typically the agenda revolves around district issues but he suggested that the committee could talk about what the district is working on, e.g., minority student achievement, goals, etc. Ms. Robarts indicated that the citizen members could help determine the agenda. They will get their ideas to Mr. Quick.

8. Other Business

Assembly Bill 94 on teaching personal finance in schools has not been scheduled for this floor period. The district offers both middle and high school information about personal finance. Mandating it would add to the cost. Personal finance is a component of a class and is an elective at the high schools.

9. Adjournment

It was moved by Carol Carstensen and seconded by Ray Allen to adjourn the meeting at 6:01 p.m. Motion unanimously carried.