Often there are issues still evolving as the session progresses, but aren't assigned specific bill numbers until they are ready to run in committee. The finished product is then presented as an amendment to what is called a caption bill, a placeholder bill filed earlier in the session. TEA has its own caption bills, as do privatization groups. Captions make knowing bill numbers for certain ideas impossible, but it's still very important to call and speak to your legislators about the concepts themselves. The following are a few basic ideas that will very likely become bills this year.
Lynn Tucker, Legislative Chair, reports to
the 2017 TRTA Ra.
Jerry Winters, Consultant, Government Relations
Tennessee Retired Teachers' Association
Beverly Berard recently joined the 2017 - 2018 TRTA Legislative Committee.
I hope that you are well. I wanted to reach out to you because I am sure you are getting questions about the stimulus checks, especially for our members who live in WEP states, don’t get SS and don’t file tax returns. I heard from the staff on the Ways and Means Committee this morning and the issue with SS recipients who don’t file tax returns has been fixed and also includes individuals in WEP states! That said, even our members who don’t pay into SS will get a rebate check as long as they meet the income threshold of earning under $75,000. I will be sending out a lot more material in tomorrow’s monthly report. The report will have a lot of information on the COVID-19 package.
Sylvia E. Johnson, Ph.D.,
Federal Lobbyist, National Education Association
Capitol Report, 2-5-9-2018 Capitol Update, 4-3-2018
2019 - The Good
Reduces the weight of student achievement from 30% to 15% in teacher evaluations. Allows the teacher to choose whether TVAAS growth or qualitative observations make up the difference if in an untested subject.
Aligns TN community schools law with current research and seeks to raise awareness of funding sources to support initiatives and share best practices in the future.
Requires placement of bleeding control kits in every TN public school and requires the department to develop training for school staff on their use.
Governor's GIVE Act which seeks to expand student access to career and technical education opportunities.
Administration bill requiring school systems to submit a report on how they used teacher raise money provided by the state to the department of education and the BEP review committee.
Administration bill establishing school safety grants to assist LEAs in funding programs that address school safety, prioritizing SROs for schools without one.
TRTA LEGISLATIVE PROGRAM
1. Continue to keep the Defined Benefit Program of the Tennessee Consolidated Retirement System funded on an actuarially sound basis.
* Assure that the benefits of the Tennessee Consolidated Retirement System accrue only to retirees and beneficiaries.
* Assure that the state's contribution to the Legacy Plan of Tennessee Consolidated Retirement System is never less
than the actuarial recommendation.
2. Monitor to assure that the tuition discount for dependents of retired teachers passed in 2014 is not discontinued.
3. Work toward tax fairness with adequate funding necessary to address the growing needs of public education and retirees.
4. Request that the 110th Legislature
* Improve the economic benefits of retired teachers.
* Increase the state contribution level to the State Medicare Supplement (Medigap) to improve benefits.
5. Inclusion of the TEA Legislative Program
TEA's 2018 BUDGET PRIORITIES
1. SALARY INCREASE FOR ALL- Every teacher needs to receive a 5% pay raise, plus full benefits funding.
2. TESTING AND EVALUATION - Enough is enough. It's time to move to a fair state assessment.
3. DEFEAT PRIVATIZATION - Dangerous privatization schemes will be back again this year. TEA's goals include:
4. INCREASE STATE FUNDING - When a school has the necessary funding to properly implement RTI, it is a valuable program for students. The problem is so few districts have the resources to fully fund RTI. TEA is proposing adding RTI to the BEP formula to
increase funding for this important program.
5. EMPOWER TEACHERS - Collaborative conferencing gives teachers a seat at the table in defining their working conditions. TEA lawsuits
have proven the power of the MOU and its significance in protecting teachers' rights. It's time to strengthen the law and add good-faith
6. STRENGTHEN PROFESSION - TEA is always looking for ways to improve our profession. We will be proposing:
Tennessee Education Association Public School Advocate Legislative Report, December 29, 2017,
To Track Bills That Interest You
2. Go to legislation; click on my bill and create an account.
3. Enter the bill numbers you wish to track.
Tuition Discount Form for Dependents of Retired Teachers
Click HERE for Tuition Discount Form and Information.