Senate Research Center   S.B. 1616
By: Cain
As Filed


Currently, Texas teachers earn among the lowest starting salaries of any
technical profession that requires a college degree.  This bill would
provide an educator pay raise, improve recruitment and training for Texas
teachers, close a loophole in the Tax Increment Financing system, and
reduce the pressure on local property tax rates.  


As proposed, S.B. 1616 sets forth guidelines for the compensation and
preparation of public school teachers and the financing thereof. 


Rulemaking authority is granted to the Texas Higher Education Coordinating
Board in SECTION 12 (Section 61.0514, Education Code) of this bill. 


SECTION 1. Amends Title 2, Education Code, by adding Chapter 47, as follows:


Sec. 47.001. DEFINITION.  Defines "educator."

Sec. 47.002. EDUCATOR PAY RAISE ALLOTMENT. Provides that for each year, a
school district is guaranteed a specific allotment in state funds for a
certain number of cents of tax effort to pay for raises for educators.
Sets forth the method for determining the allotment.  Requires the
allotment to be distributed by each school district in a manner that
provides an equal percentage increase to all teachers in the district.
Requires districts subject to Section 41.003, who choose options (3) or (4)
of that section, to have the cumulative cost of purchasing average daily
attendance credits (attendance credits) or contracting for the education of
nonresident students reduced by the amount of the allotment in lieu of
receiving the allotment of this chapter.  Prohibits a district from being
required to achieve an equalized wealth level and is required to receive
the portion of the allotment that exceeds the cumulative amount, if the
allotment is greater than the cumulative cost of purchasing attendance
credits or contracting for the education of nonresident students.
Prohibits a district from receiving an allotment if certain circumstances

SECTION 2. Amends Section 42.007, Education Code, to require the funding
elements to include the amount to be appropriated for the educator pay
raise allotment under Chapter 47.  Requires a study on funding elements to
include a study of the cost to the state each biennium to ensure that each
school district would be able to maintain existing programs at existing tax
rates assuming no student growth without raising local property takes.
Makes conforming changes.   

SECTION 3. Amends Section 403.302(d), Government Code, as amended by
Chapters 1039, 1040, and 1071, Acts of the 75th Legislature, Regular
Session, 1997, to redefine "taxable value." 

SECTION 4. Amends Sections 403.302(e) - (g), Government Code, to provide
that Subsection (d)(3) applies only to the captured appraised value of real
property located in an investment zone before September 1, 1999, or an
improvement to real property described by Subdivision (1).  Makes
conforming changes.   

SECTION 5. Amends Section 403.303(a), Government Code, to authorize a
school district or certain property owner to protest the comptroller's
findings under Section 403.302(g) or (h), rather than Sections 403.302(f)
and (g), by filing a petition.   

SECTION 6. Amends Section 44.004, Education Code, as follows:

BUDGET ADOPTION AND TAX RATE.  Requires a president of a board of trustees
of a school district to provide for the publication of a notice of the
budget and proposed tax rate in a newspaper published in the district.
Sets forth the required style and content of the notice. Deletes a
provision regarding notice published under this subsection.  Deletes a
provision authorizing a district to include a notice required under Section
26.06, Tax Code.  

SECTION 7. Amends Section 26.06, Tax Code, to require all units, except
certain school districts, to post a notice regarding a public hearing.
Requires units, except certain school districts, to give notice of a
meeting at which such units vote on a proposed tax increase.  Makes
conforming changes. 

SECTION 8. Amends Section 42.102, Education Code, to provide that the cost
of education adjustment is determined by adjusting the cost of the
education index, rather than education index adjustment, adopted by the
foundation school fund budget committee, to reflect the most recent
available data. 

SECTION 9. Amends Section 57.043, Utilities Code, by adding Subsection (y),
to require money appropriated to the telecommunications infrastructure fund
board (TIFB) to fund training for all Texas public school teachers in the
use of computers and technology for administrative and curriculum
enhancement purposes.   

SECTION 10. Amends Chapter 21, Education Code, by adding Subchapter K, as


Sec. 21.501. DEFINITIONS. Defines "board," "program," "public junior
college," and "public senior college or university." 

Sec. 21.502. DEVELOPMENT. Requires the State Board of Educator
Certification (SBEC) to propose rules for establishing the Teach for Texas
Program (TTP) to attract certain persons to the teaching profession.   

Sec. 21.503. STRUCTURE. Provides that TTP consists of two tiers designed to
attract certain persons to the teaching profession. 

Sec. 21.504. CERTIFICATION REQUIREMENTS. Requires SBEC to propose
alternative certification requirements under Section 21.049 for persons in
both tiers of TTP that facilitate the recruitment of persons into TTP. 

Sec. 21.505. FINANCIAL INCENTIVES. Requires TTP to offer TTP participants
financial incentives.  Sets forth requirements for SBEC.  Provides that
financial incentives are payable from funds appropriated for that purpose,
and from gifts, grants, and donations.   

Sec. 21.506. PROGRAM ELEMENTS. Requires TTP to allow a participant to
complete internship or fieldwork requirements during a summer, take into
account special needs of substitute teachers and provide incentives for
substitute teacher certification to teach, and offer health insurance to
persons who leave employment to complete internship or fieldwork

Sec. 21.507. MEDIA CAMPAIGN. Requires SBEC, working with certain state
agencies, to conduct a coordinated media campaign, required to emphasize
certain elements of the program, to educate professionals and student about

SECTION 11. Amends Chapter 21B, Education Code, by adding Section 21.0441,
as follows: 
Requires SBEC to cooperate with and advise the Texas Higher Education
Coordinating Board (THECB) in adoption by THECB of rules for educator
preparation program curriculum under Section 61.0514. 

SECTION 12. Amends Chapter 61C, Education Code, by adding Section 61.0514,
as follows: 

Sec. 61.0514. INTEGRATED COURSEWORK. Requires THECB, in cooperation with
SBEC, by rule, to adopt educator preparation program curriculum guidelines
to integrate certain materials in order to minimize the amount of
coursework necessary to obtain educator certification under Chapter 21B. 

SECTION 13. Requires THECB to adopt rules in accordance with Section
61.0514, Education Code, and distribute the rules to certain colleges no
later than August 15, 2000.  Requires certain colleges to offer courses in
accordance with such rules beginning the fall semester of the 2002 - 2003
academic year. 

SECTION 14. Effective date: August 31, 1999.

SECTION 15. Emergency clause.