March 3, 2017
Workers’ rights awareness
House Bill 2856
What it does: On the surface, the bill would create a program through the Bureau of Labor and Industries that promotes education about employee rights and provide technical assistance. The bill also creates punitive measures, however, including penalties for employers who are noncompliant on recently passed laws, such as sick time and wage theft.
What’s new: The bill was heard Feb. 27 in the House Business and Labor Committee.
What’s next: OSBA opposes the bill because of impacts to school districts and will continue to meet with legislators to discuss concerns.
Dedicated TAG funding
House Bill 2419
What it does: The bill would require a per-student expenditure for instruction of Talented and Gifted students. The expenditure, of either $250 or $300 depending on the size of the TAG program, would come directly from the State School Fund, effectively creating a new “carve out” from that fund.
What’s new: The bill was heard Feb. 27 in the House Education Committee.
What’s next: If it is voted out of the Education Committee, then it will go to the House Committee on Revenue because it changes a distribution formula. OSBA will monitor the bill’s progress.
Predictive scheduling in the workplace
Senate Bill 828
What it does: The bill would require employers to pay employees for a minimum time of on-call duty and give workers the right to express a preference for their work hours. Absent a bona fide business reason, certain large employers would be required to grant an employee's scheduling request if it is based on a serious health condition of the employee, the employee's caregiving responsibilities for a family member, an additional employment commitment of the employee, changes in the employee's access to the workplace due to changes in the employee's transportation or housing arrangements, or the employee's participation in a career-related educational or training program.
What’s new: The bill was heard Feb. 27 before the Senate Workforce Committee.
What’s next: OSBA opposes the bill and will meet again with the sponsors and other legislators about the bill.
Statewide FFA support and funding
Senate Bill 230
What it does: The bill would require the Oregon Department of Education to broadly support Future Farmers of America programs statewide. These supports would include registering students in agricultural education courses with the national FFA organization, requiring ODE to provide financial support for leadership development and training, and appropriating $1.8 million from the General Fund to ODE for the Oregon FFA Association to pay for student registration. The bill would also require ODE to establish two grant programs: an incentive program to support public school agriculture and science programs, and a program for funding extended duty contracts for school district personnel to manage agricultural programs during the summer. The bill would permit funding for the grant programs to be drawn from the High School Graduation and College and Career Readiness Fund established by Ballot Measure 98 (2016).
What’s new: The bill was heard March 2 in the Senate Education Committee.
What’s next: If it is voted out of the Education committee, then it will go to the Joint Committee on Ways and Means because of the appropriation in the bill. OSBA will monitor the bill’s progress.