Take Action on Mandate Relief
As part of the June 2011 NY Tax Levy Cap legislation, school districts and other local governments may submit up to three (3) mandates per year for review by the Mandate Relief Council. We urge every district to do so, and hope you will use the WPSBA Legislative Priorities as a basis for determining which mandates to submit. In an effort to expedite this process, WPSBA has drafted a Mandate Relief Resolution for school districts to approve at a public meeting as a starting point for submitting requests to the Mandate Relief Council. WPSBA has created a document that lists key mandates with statute numbers.
WPSBA is working both locally and with other regional school board associations across the state to encourage each school district to submit three mandates this year. Each mandate submitted must conform to criteria listed in the statute.
What a statement it would make if all districts submitted resolutions to address: the 1982 Triborough Amendment legislation (freezing step increases when no contract is in place); the 2000 legislation that revoked the 3% employee pension contribution for those in Tiers IV and V with over 10 years of service; or the Last In, First Out (LIFO) provision of Education law (seniority as the sole basis for staff layoffs). While WPSBA initially thought that the 3012-c statute which governs the APPR would not be applicable since it applies to federal law, a recent discussion with Jay Worona (NYSSBA) affirmed that aspects related to local negotiations, appeals and probationary staff could be brought before the Council (the Governor's decision on APPR could impact this). There are also several onerous transportation and special education statutes that districts may opt to put before the Council as their third mandate. WPSBA, LHCSS, NYSSBA and others (see below) have compiled information on these and other "unsound, unduly burdensome or costly" mandates.
We hope your district will put forward three resolutions. A groundswell of resolutions will draw attention to the severity of the problem, and may finally lead to legislative action. Be sure to include district data and anecdotal evidence that will bring the impact of these unfunded/underfunded mandates to life.
Here are the basic steps to follow:
2) Submit the Mandate Relief Council's electronic form describing the impact on your district (and beyond).
3) Attend the Mandate Relief Council Hudson Valley hearing on February 27th (see sidebar).
For background data, check out the following:
● WPSBA website has links to legislation, studies, NYS Mandate Relief Council webpage and forms, etc. We post items on a regular basis. (www.wpsba.org - click left tab, Legislative Advocacy - Current Issues & Data - Mandate Relief Advocacy)
● Lower Hudson Council of School Superintendents; Mandate Relief Recommendations (www.lhcss.org under position papers on their website; priorities with analysis and data)
● NYSSBA Essential Fiscal Reform Playbook (www.nyssba.org)
● New York State Website for Mandate Relief Council (www.governor.ny.gov/mandatereliefcouncil ) has posts on the statute, council membership and process, and regional hearings as well as electronic submittal forms.