Last Wednesday, May 2nd, I was in the Student Physical Safety and Security Working Group of the House Select Committee on School Safety. We heard presentations on recommendations to go to the full committee on the 10th. They included additional training standards for School Resource Officers (SROs), additional funding to local school districts for SRO grants, and studying a volunteer SRO program. Also, the recommendations included school risk management plans, school building vulnerability assessments, and reporting requirements to the Center for Safer Schools. The proposed legislation can be viewed by going to the General Assembly home page at www.ncleg.net , and going to the committee website.
We were informed that we would have budget recommendations very soon after we convene on May 16th. Preparation for this has already begun, including meetings with the senior chairs of the House Appropriations Committee, as well as the chairs of the House Appropriations Committee on Transportation. I am a vice chairman of the former committee and chairman of the latter. Both groups met Wednesday. While the numbers are not finalized on how much revenue will be available for the second year of the biennial budget beginning July 1st, it appears there will not be a lot of adjustment to the budget, which was passed last year in the 2017 – 2019 budget process.
It is anticipated that we will be in budget meetings again this week, right after the primary election. I am scheduled to be in a budget meeting at 10:00 a.m. on Wednesday, the 9th for budget talks. Then, on Thursday, the 10th, the final meeting of the House Select Committee on School Safety will convene. We will consider recommendations from the two working groups, the one on physical safety and security and the one on student health. I expect that legislation will come out of this meeting to be considered and passed in the short session.
As referred to earlier, the short session is scheduled to convene on May 16th. I expect it will be a truly short session, ending in June.