1998 Session

Budget Amendments - HB30 (Conference Report)

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$50 Million Educational Technology Program (language only)

Item 138 #12c

Item 138 #12c

Education: Elementary and Secondary
Direct Aid To Public Education

Page 106, after line 7, insert:
"e.  1) An education technology grant program shall be conducted through the Virginia Public School Authority, through the issuance of equipment notes in an amount estimated at $50,000,000 in the Spring of 2000.  Proceeds of the notes will be used to continue implementation of the Board of Education's Six-Year Educational Technology Plan for Virginia, including any modifications recommended in the Technology Inventory conducted in 1998-99.  The program will focus on three of the major components of that plan:  a) retrofitting and upgrading of existing school buildings to efficiently use educational technology; b) providing network-ready multimedia microcomputers for every classroom; and c) providing a 5 to 1 ratio of pupils to network-ready microcomputers.
2)  Grant funds are based on an average grant of $26,000 per school.  For purposes of this grant program, eligible schools shall include those reporting membership as of September 30, 1999, as well as division and regional vocational centers, regional special education centers, regular school year regional Governor's Schools, and the Schools for the Deaf and the Blind.
3)  Localities are required to provide a match for these funds equal to 20 percent of the grant amount.  At least 25 percent of the local match shall be used for teacher training in the use of technology.  The Superintendent of Public Instruction is authorized to reduce the required local match for school divisions with a composite index of local ability-to-pay below 0.2000.  The Schools for the Deaf and the Blind are exempt from the match requirement.
4)  It is the intent of the General Assembly to appropriate Literary Fund revenues sufficient to pay debt service on the Virginia Public School Authority bonds authorized for this program.  In developing the proposed 2000-2002, 2002-2004 and 2004-2006 biennial budgets for public education, the Board of Education shall include a recommendation to the Governor to appropriate Literary Fund revenues sufficient to make the debt service payments for this program in fiscal years 2001, 2002, 2003, 2004, and 2005."
Page 106, line 8, strike "e" and insert "f".
Page 106, line 39, strike "f" and insert "g".
Page 106, line 43, strike "g" and insert "h".

(This amendment provides for a $50.0 million educational technology program in the second year, upon completion of a Technology Inventory. The first year of debt service on the year 2000 equipment notes authorized in this amendment will not occur until after the final payment on the 1995 equipment notes. The level of Literary Fund revenues dedicated to the payment of equipment notes will not increase as a result of this program. A companion amendment, providing funds for the Technology Inventory, has been included in Item 136.)