House votes on party lines to suspend ‘test-to-stay’

UEA Legislative Team member Chase Clyde (right) with Sen. Kathleen Riebe and her intern at the Capitol on Jan. 19.

Lawmakers quickly settled in to their work following an opening day of speechmaking and drama. The day’s work mainly focused on discussions to adopt base budgets and holding committee hearings. A bill to suspend the “test-to-stay” requirement for schools passed the House on a party-line vote without a committee hearing or opportunity for public comment.

Senate Education Committee (reported by Sara Jones): Two bills tracked by UEA were on the agenda for the first Senate Education committee meeting of the 2022 legislative session.

SCR5: Concurrent Resolution Honoring 125th Anniversary of the Parent Teacher Association recognizes the important work of the PTA and parents in supporting students, teachers and schools. The resolution passed unanimously.

SB67: School Athletic Director Salary Supplement Amendments proposes to create a stipend of either $2,500 or $5,000 annually for athletic directors with certain types of certification. The bill narrowly passed the committee on a vote of 3-2.

Public Education Appropriations Subcommittee (reported by Jay Blain): Legislative Fiscal Analyst Ben Leishman gave an overview of the Subcommittee and it processes. In addition, he noted key questions committee members should ask about requests for funding.

The Subcommittee also presented HB1: Public Education Base Budget. Highlights from the Base Budget overview presentation include:

  • 2.6% on the WPU for inflation,
  • fully funding student enrollment growth, and
  • $72 million set aside for additional WPU increase.

Additional budget presentations were heard by the Subcommittee:

House Floor (reported by Mike Kelley): One UEA-tracked bill passed the House today. Another is significant because it was not heard.

HB 183: In-person Learning Amendments would suspend the “test-to-stay” requirement for schools across the state. It passed the House on a party-line vote of 57-17 without a committee hearing or opportunity for public comment. The measure now moves to the Senate (more from The Salt Lake Tribune).

After passing in the Senate without committee hearing or public comment, SJR3: Joint Resolution to Terminate Public Health Orders Pertaining to Face Coverings, which would overturn any mask mandates in the state, was not heard in the House as expected. The resolution reportedly stalled in the House Majority Caucus due to lack of consensus (more from The Salt Lake Tribune).

See the 2022 UEA Legislative Tracking Sheet for the current bills tracked by UEA.

View all legislative happenings at UEA Under the Dome.