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Update Posted March 29, 2011

Update on USG Relevant Legislation

IMMIGRATION
HB 59 - Declare Postsecondary Education a Public Benefit
House Bill 59, sponsored by Representative Tom Rice, would prohibit admission of undocumented students to all public postsecondary institutions in the state. The bill proposes an amendment to current Georgia code “relating to verification of lawful presence within United States, so as to clarify that postsecondary education is a state and local public benefit; to reserve postsecondary education benefits to citizens and lawfully present and eligible aliens; to require verification of the eligibility for such applicants for such benefits through the federal SAVE program; to provide for related matters; to repeal conflicting laws; and for other purposes.”
(Feb/16/2011 - House Committee Favorably Reported)

HB 87 - Illegal Immigration Reform and Enforcement Act of 2011
House Bill 87 is sponsored by Representative Matt Ramsey. The bill will enact the “Illegal Immigration Reform and Enforcement Act of 2011” as well as amend current code to require several provisions related to security and immigration compliance. This bill also seeks amendment to official Georgia code relating to “verification of lawful presence within the United States, so as to provide for identification cards by applicants for public benefit.”
(Mar/04/2011 - Senate Read and Referred)

SB 40 - Security and Immigration Compliance
Senate Bill 40, sponsored by Representative Jack Murphy, is similar to House Bill 87 and includes additional requirements and penalties for public and private employers.
(Mar/28/2011 - House Committee Favorably Reported)

WORKING WITH TECHNICAL COLLEGE SYSTEM
HB 176 - Credit Articulation Agreements Act
Representative David Casas is the sponsor of House Bill 176, which would provide for state-wide degree transfer agreements between state institutions of higher education, to be accomplished within a particular time-frame.
(Feb/9/2011 - House Second Readers)

HB 186 - Quality Basic Education Act
House Bill 186, sponsored by Representative Randy Nix, is known as the “pathways” bill. In summary, the bill would require the USG or TCSG to accept a student for admission if the student was given credit for a for a high school Career, Technical, and Agricultural Education (CTAE) course and if that CTAE course has the academic core curriculum standards embedded in it. In addition, the student would also have to pass an End of Course Test for the high school academic core course credit.
(Mar/10/2011 - Senate Read and Referred)

TUITION
HB 74 - Tuition Grant Assistance for the Georgia Military College
House Bill 74 is sponsored by Representative Rusty Kidd. The bill seeks to amend Georgia code as it relates to tuition grant assistance for North Georgia College and State University. The bill, if passed, would provide “tuition grant assistance for students attending Georgia Military College similar to military students attending North Georgia College and State University.”
(Feb/16/2011 - House Committee Favorably Reported)

REAL ESTATE/FACILITIES
SB 140 - Georgia Higher Education Facilities Authority
Senator Cecil Staton sponsors Senate Bill 140. This bill will increase the amount of bonding authority of the Georgia Higher Education Facilities Authority; provide for related matters; provide an effective date; repeal conflicting laws; and for other purposes.
(Mar/30/2011 - House Committee Favorably Reported)

SB 220 - Board of Regents Multiyear Lease Agreements
Senate Bill 220, sponsored by Senator Buddy Carter, relates to the Board of Regents and provides for multiyear lease agreements. The board of regents shall be authorized to enter into any necessary annual and multiyear agreements to rent or lease space, whether existing or to be constructed, and shall include space rented or leased by the board of regents from the Georgia Building Authority or from any other public or private person, firm, or corporation.
(Mar/22/2011 Withdrawn from Higher Education and recommitted to State Institutions & Property)

SB 190 - Georgia Capitol Museum
Senator Georgia Hooks sponsored this senate bill, which provides for the transfer of the operation of the Georgia Capitol Museum from the Secretary of State to the board of regents and provides for the powers and duties of the board of regents with respect to the museum.
(Mar/22/2011 - House Second Readers)

FISCAL YEAR 2012 BUDGET
HB 78 General Appropriations
This bill will set the budgets for the State fiscal year beginning July 1, 2011 and ending June 30, 2012. On March 28, the Senate Appropriations Committee approved its version of the FY12 budget. The Senate Committee reversed key changes made by the House and approved a budget that’s closer to the Governor’s recommended operating budget for FY12. There are changes to both the operating and capital budget.

Operating Budget:
• Reversed the $12.5M transfer from the formula to the special funding initiative program for those regional and comprehensive universities that are below 5% from the median funding per FTE student.
• Reversed the redirection of formula funds to Georgia Gwinnett College to bring its total special funding initiative to $19M (from the current $16.6M).
• Added $1.6M for M&O funding in the formula.
• Added back $800K for the Agricultural Experiment Station and $400K for the Cooperative Extension Service.
• Added $150K for the Georgia Tech Research Institute for a partnership with Direct to Discovery.
• Reduced MCGHI by $317K.

Capital Budget:
• Addition of $34.5M for the following projects in the bond package:
o $9.9M for Clayton State University for the Science Building.
o $600K for South Georgia College for utility loop infrastructure.
o $2.75M for Armstrong Atlantic State University – Gamble Hall.
o $1.05M for Atlanta Metropolitan College for Phase II of Academic Science Building.
o $3M for North Georgia College and State University for equipment for Forsyth County campus.
o $4.55M for Georgia College and State University – Ennis Hall.
o $8.07M for Dalton State College – Academic Building construction.
o $3.55M for Georgia Gwinnett College for campus-wide construction.
o $1.1M for Georgia Highlands College, design funding for Academic Building in Cartersville.
o $800K for Bainbridge College, design funding for Academic Building.

• Increased funding for the following projects:
o $3.9M for Health Science Building at Valdosta State University (to $7.8M).
o $12M for Biology Building at Georgia Southern University (to $21M).
o $7M for the Education Classroom Facility at Kennesaw State University (to $16M).

• Reduction of funding for the following:
o $200K for the design of the Science Learning Center at University of Georgia (to $3M).
o $1M for the design of the Allied Health Building at Georgia Gwinnett College (to $1M).
o $500K for GPTC.

• Addition of funding for Public Libraries:
o $575K for the Middle Georgia Regional Library.
o $350K for the Milner Public Library.
o $634K for the Royston Public Library.
(Mar/29/2011 - Senate Read Second Time)

You can track bills using this web site: http://www.usg.edu/government/legislative_tracking.

Posted by Sonja Roberts
Published in: Legislation

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