1998 Session

Budget Amendments - HB30 (Committee Approved)

School Construction Grants (language only)

Item 150.01 #1h

Item 150.01 #1h

Education: Elementary and Secondary
Direct Aid To Public Education

Page 115, after line 35, insert:
"150.01     School Construction Grants Fund (198000)................        $9,200,000    $9,200,000
                Financial Assistance for School Construction (19801)..  $9,200,000    $9,200,000
Fund Sources:  Dedicated Special Revenue.................                   $9,200,000    $9,200,000
Authority:  §§22.1-175.1, 22.1-175.2 and 58.1-4022, Code of Virginia.
A.  An amount estimated at $55,000,000 the first year from the general fund and $55,000,000 the second year from the general fund, pursuant to Item 554 of this act, shall be paid into the Virginia Public School Construction Grants Fund.  In addition, an amount estimated at $9,200,000 the first year and $9,200,000 the second year, pursuant to Item 150 of this act, shall be paid into the Virginia Public School Construction Grants Fund.
B.  The purpose of the fund shall be to provide grants to eligible school divisions for construction, additions, renovation, infrastructure,or debt service payments, or a portion thereof, incurred within the preceding five years for such purposes and site acquisition for public school buildings and facilities.
C.  The Board of Education shall issue guidelines governing disbursement of grant awards.  School divisions that wish to participate in the Virginia Public School Construction Grants Program must certify their intent to do so no later than September 30, of each year.  This certification must include a statement of the total project cost and the total grant amount the division is requesting and a resolution from the appropriate local governing body signifying its intent to appropriate the required match funds.
D.  School divisions applying for grants to match debt service payments pursuant to §22.1-175.2, Code of Virginia, must provide the total annual debt service amount for eligible projects that were completed in the last five years, and the total grant amount that they are requesting, and a resolution from their governing body signifying their intent to appropriate the required matching funds.
E.  The amount of each grant awarded to a qualifying school division shall not exceed 50 percent of the cost for eligible projects or total debt service payments for eligible projects pursuant to §22.1-175.2, Code of Virginia.
F.  Consistent with the provisions of §22.1-175.4, Code of Virginia, the Board of Education shall specify the criteria for distributing the funds and the local match required, such that both Average Daily Membership and the local composite index of ability to pay are taken into consideration.
G.  After receiving such certifications and requests for funds, the Department of Education shall distribute the available funds to school divisions on a pro-rata basis; however, no school division shall receive more than 10 percent of the total pool of available funds.  Any balances available after application of this cap shall be redistributed to the remaining school divisions.
H.  The Superintendent of Public Instruction shall provide a report on the status of the Virginia Public School Construction Grants Program to the Chairmen of the House Appropriations, House Education, Senate Finance, and Senate Education and Health Committees by December 1 of each year."

(This amendment would establish the Virginia Public School Construction Grants program. Companion amendments in Item 554 and Item 150 would supply funding for the grants.)