I am one member of a five person board. The opinions I express on this forum are mine only, and do not necessarily reflect the views or opinions of the Escambia County Staff, Administrators, Employees, or anyone else associated with Escambia County Florida. I am interested in establishing this blog as a means of additional transparency to the public, outreach to the community, and information dissemination to all who choose to look. Feedback is welcome, but because public participation is equally encouraged, appropriate language and decorum is mandatory.

Wednesday, February 3, 2016

Huge Committee Day Yesterday in Tallahassee for Membership Association Bills

The Florida Coalition of School Board Members had an excellent day in Tallahassee yesterday.  Members of the coalition made their presence felt in the House Education Subcommittee and in the Senate K-12 Education committee.  As a result of some diligent effort by various members of both chambers of the legislature, as well as some discussions individual school board members from our coalition have had with legislators face to face, the membership association bills  (HB 1155 and SB 1426 ) that we all strongly support made their way favorably through both committee stops.  In the House, 1155 moved favorably through the committee by a 10-2 margin.

In the Senate, the vote was a bit more precarious, with 1426  moving favorably through the committee by a 5-4 vote.  Former Senate President Don Gaetz made a rousing endorsement for the bill, the reasoning behind the need for such a bill, and why he was proud to be the bill's co-sponsor ( minute 85:30 of this video )---- explaining this all to his colleagues just prior to the vote.

Erika Donalds, the current president of the Coalition, gave her testimony before the committee at minute 72:40 of the meeting

Andrea Messina, the Executive Director of the FSBA gave testimony in opposition to the bill at minute 78:00 of this video

I spoke in favor of the bill in this video at minute 81:50

The next stop for HB 1155 in the House is in the full House Education Committee.

The next stop for SB 1426 in the Senate is in the full Senate Appropriations Committee. 

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