April 4, 2003
Summaries of Bills Signed Into Law Friday
The Associated Press
Bills signed into law Friday by Gov. Bill Richardson.
HB12 Establish a fine arts education program to encourage public schools to offer music, theater, dance and visual arts classes; state aid for the programs will flow through the school financing formula. A supplemental budget measure allocates $4 million for the program. Provides for a one-time salary bonus for teachers certified by the National Board for Professional Teaching Standards. Effective June 20.
HB159 Create a "teacher professional development fund" in the state treasury to hold appropriations by the Legislature or donations for programs and projects to improve teacher quality. Effective June 20.
HB169 Provide a mechanism to funnel more money to fast-growing school districts. Effective June 20.
HB195 Make clear that the state will not impair bonds issued by local school districts for teacher housing. Effective immediately.
HB212 Enact public school reforms, including establishment of three-tier, competency-based teacher licensing system. Effective immediately.
HB305 Require high school students to annually prepare a "next step plan" outlining their goals for the following year, including plans to attend college, obtain jobs or internships. No student could receive a high school diploma without completing a plan signed by parents or a guardian and filing it with the principal. Effective July 1.
HB310 Schedule a special statewide election on Sept. 23 for voters to consider constitutional amendments related to education, including increasing the distribution from a permanent fund and creating a cabinet-level secretary of education. Effective June 20.
HB591 Allow the Department of Public Safety to regulate the times when an overweight vehicle may operate on the highways. Effective June 20.
HB658 Require the state to contract with private and nonprofit groups for a certain portion of Head Start services covering children in families covered by the welfare-to-work program. Effective June 20.
HB700 Provide for certain state agencies to contract for after-school programs and other youth services through public-private partnership. Effective June 20.
HB708 Require colleges, universities and public schools offering "distance learning" or computer-based courses to provide it in a format that can be used by the disabled. Effective June 20.
HB724 Allow school districts to buy online resources and software using money allocated by the state for instructional materials. Effective June 20.
HB745 Impose limits on the maximum amount of cash balances by school districts or charter schools. Effective immediately.
HB881 Change the name of the state Highway and Transportation Department to the Department of Transportation; also updates name of agency administrator to secretary of transportation; changes the name to the state Transportation Commission from Highway Commission to conform with constitutional amendment adopted by voters. Effective July 1.
SB216 Add fine arts education, and certification by the National Board for Professional Teaching Standards, to the list of items that may be included in calculating school districts' program costs. Effective June 20.
SB283 Amend as of July 1 the law that allows retired educators to return to work in school districts without losing their retirement benefits, to add those who retired before January 2001 and meet certain conditions. Effective June 20.
SB396 Require that at least 10 percent of the textbooks and other instructional material approved by the state Board of Education contain material that is relevant to the cultures, languages, history and experiences of multiethnic students. Effective June 20.
SB513 Update the state's system for financing maintenance and construction projects for public schools, including providing a formula for distributing state aid. Effective immediately.
SB556 Create a "safe routes to school" program in the state Highway and Transportation Department to help identify school route hazards and help eliminate them. Effective June 20.
SB627 Create a school library material fund from which the Department of Education could distribute money to school districts to pay for the cost of purchasing material for school libraries. Effective June 20.
SB911 Give the new secretary of education power to oversee public schools during a transition period, in the event voters approve a constitutional amendment creating a secretary of education and an advisory public education commission. Effective June 20.