Legislature(2015 - 2016)BUTROVICH 205

03/26/2015 03:30 PM Senate EDUCATION

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Heard & Held
Heard & Held
         SB 79-REEMPLOYMENT OF RETIRED TEACHERS & ADMIN                                                                     
3:31:18 PM                                                                                                                    
CHAIR DUNLEAVY announced  the consideration of SB 79.  He said in                                                               
years past  there have  been retiree  hire bills.  The bill  is a                                                               
tool for districts if they feel  the need to expand their pool of                                                               
qualified educators. As sponsor, he read the sponsor statement:                                                                 
     Currently   Alaska  is   experiencing  a   shortage  of                                                                    
     qualified educators,  especially in hard to  fill areas                                                                    
     of  the  state. This  situation  is  compounded by  the                                                                    
     drastic  reduction  in state  revenue  due  to low  oil                                                                    
     prices.   Senate   Bill   79  expands   the   pool   of                                                                    
     experienced,  qualified educators  available to  school                                                                    
     This  legislation   will  allow  school   districts  to                                                                    
     reemploy  educators who  are currently  retired for  at                                                                    
     least  three months.  This bill  will  not require  any                                                                    
     school  district  to  reemploy any  particular  retired                                                                    
     individual. It  will only give  the district  an option                                                                    
     to do  so. Under SB 79,  a school district may  offer a                                                                    
     contract  to  a retired  educator  for  a part-time  or                                                                    
     full-time positon at a lower cost to the district.                                                                         
     Educators reemployed  under this provision  continue to                                                                    
     receive  retirement  benefits   during  the  period  of                                                                    
     reemployment. SB  79 provides one more  tool for school                                                                    
     districts  struggling  from  a  shortage  of  qualified                                                                    
     educators,  as  well  as   a  significant  decrease  in                                                                    
     funding. I hope that you will give it your support.                                                                        
CHAIR  DUNLEAVY  said SB  79  is  a straightforward  bill.  Staff                                                               
worked with  departments others associated with  education to put                                                               
the bill  together, looked at what  was done in the  past, and at                                                               
federal and state laws.  The goal is to try to  get as many tools                                                               
as possible for  districts in preparation for what may  be a long                                                               
downturn in state revenues.                                                                                                     
He recognized the presence of Senator Stevens.                                                                                  
CHAIR  DUNLEAVY stated  that  SB 79  allows  school districts  to                                                               
determine their needs.                                                                                                          
3:34:36 PM                                                                                                                    
SENATOR  GARDNER asked  why this  concept couldn't  be opened  to                                                               
others in state service besides educators.                                                                                      
CHAIR DUNLEAVY commented that his focus is in education.                                                                        
SENATOR GARDNER  said at  one time she  would not  have supported                                                               
such  a bill,  but has  been persuaded  that it  is valuable  for                                                               
CHAIR DUNLEAVY described his experience  with teacher turnover in                                                               
rural and urban Alaska and the  success of the mentor program. He                                                               
suggested   the  pool   of  teachers   could  be   enlarged  with                                                               
experienced educators.                                                                                                          
3:37:14 PM                                                                                                                    
SENATOR STEVENS  said it is  worth the discussion. He  found that                                                               
teachers become better the longer  they teach. He asked about the                                                               
insurance benefits for these retirees.  He assumed there would be                                                               
no cost to the state because  the teachers are retirees. He asked                                                               
if part-time teachers would earned  retirement benefits or just a                                                               
negotiated salary.                                                                                                              
CHAIR DUNLEAVY  said the  model is the  mentor project  where the                                                               
teachers were retired and only  received compensation from a paid                                                               
SENATOR STEVENS  recalled long  discussions in  other occupations                                                               
regarding double dipping.                                                                                                       
CHAIR DUNLEAVY  said he is  open to  suggestions. His goal  is to                                                               
get  a larger  pool of  teachers, especially  during a  prolonged                                                               
downturn in revenue, at the request of school districts.                                                                        
3:39:56 PM                                                                                                                    
SENATOR HUGGINS recalled the same discussion in the Department                                                                  
of Fish and Game. He thought it could potentially be abused,                                                                    
especially under retirement incentive programs.                                                                                 
CHAIR DUNLEAVY said that was not the intent.                                                                                    
CHAIR DUNLEAVY held SB 79 in committee.                                                                                         

Document Name Date/Time Subjects
SB 79 Legislation.pdf SEDC 3/26/2015 3:30:00 PM
SB 79
SB 79 Sectional Analysis.pdf SEDC 3/26/2015 3:30:00 PM
SB 79
SB 79 Sponsor Statement.pdf SEDC 3/26/2015 3:30:00 PM
SB 79
SB 80 Legislation.pdf SEDC 3/26/2015 3:30:00 PM
SB 80
SB 80 Sponsor Statement.pdf SEDC 3/26/2015 3:30:00 PM
SB 80
SB 80 Fiscal Note.pdf SEDC 3/26/2015 3:30:00 PM
SB 80