SENATE BILL 438
56th legislature - STATE OF NEW MEXICO - first session, 2023
George K. Muñoz and Leo Jaramillo and Siah Correa Hemphill and Martin Hickey
RELATING TO PUBLIC SCHOOL FINANCE; LIMITING THE GROWTH OF ADMINISTRATIVE EXPENDITURES BY CERTAIN SCHOOL DISTRICTS AND CHARTER SCHOOLS; PROVIDING FOR A WORKING GROUP TO IDENTIFY REDUNDANT REPORTS REQUIRED BY FEDERAL AND STATE LAW OR RULES TO ALLEVIATE ADMINISTRATIVE AND TEACHING BURDENS.
BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF NEW MEXICO:
SECTION 1. A new section of the Public School Finance Act is enacted to read:
"[NEW MATERIAL] LIMITING THE GROWTH OF ADMINISTRATIVE EXPENDITURES.--
A. As used in this section:
(1) "administrative expenditures" means expenditures in function codes 2300, 2500 and 2900; and
(2) "consumer price index" means the average of the monthly consumer price indices for a calendar year for the United States for all items as published by the United States department of labor.
B. In fiscal year 2024, the department shall calculate the average administrative expenditures for the last three years for each school district or charter school that has a student population of more than two thousand to determine the baseline for future budgets. The baseline shall apply to fiscal year 2025 operating budgets and, thereafter, operating budgets shall be based on the prior year.
C. Beginning with the operating budget submitted to the department by April 15, 2024, a school district or charter school shall not submit an operating budget for the ensuing fiscal year that includes budgeted administrative expenditures that exceed the budgeted administrative expenditures in the current year plus the lesser of:
(1) a percentage of the current year's administrative expenditures less than or equal to the increase in the consumer price index from the prior year; or
(2) a percentage of the current year's budgeted administrative expenditures less than or equal to the percentage increase in program cost for the budgeted fiscal year compared with the current fiscal year.
D. The department may waive a year's limitation on growth of administrative expenditures for a school district or charter school in extraordinary circumstances defined by rule of the department. Prior to requesting a waiver from the department, the school district or charter school shall hold a public hearing and the local school board or governing body of a charter school shall approve the waiver request by an affirmative vote of at least two-thirds of the members of the local school board or governing body of a charter school.
E. Except for a school district or charter school receiving a waiver pursuant to Subsection B of this section, the department shall not:
(1) approve an operating budget of a school district or charter school that does not limit the growth of administrative expenditures as provided in Subsection A of this section; and
(2) approve a budget adjustment request to increase administrative expenditures if the adjusted budget would provide for an increase in the budgeted year's administrative expenditures above the amount allowed in Subsection A of this section."
SECTION 2. TEMPORARY PROVISION--REDUNDANT REPORTS WORKING GROUP.--
A. The public education department and the legislative education study committee shall convene a working group to study all state and federal reporting requirements to alleviate school district and public school administrative, teaching and instructional support reporting burdens. The working group shall:
(1) identify redundant school administration, school instruction, instructional support and other reports, including reports required by both federal and state agencies and reports required by state law or rule of the department that could be streamlined or combined with other reports;
(2) identify reports that do not serve any identifiable useful purpose, including reports that can be generated from department databases instead of submitted by school districts or charter schools;
(3) consider report submittal dates for federal and state reports and whether report dates can be sychronized for efficiency; and
(4) determine who in the department is responsible for acting on each required report and whether, in fact, the report is used for statistical purposes or to improve the operations of the department, school districts or charter schools.
B. The working group shall consider the public education and related data needs of the state and make recommendations, if any, on improvements needed to the public education department's data system to make school district, charter school and other reporters' reporting more efficient.
SECTION 3. EFFECTIVE DATE.--The effective date of the provisions of this act is July 1, 2023.
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