Legislature, Week Ten: A look ahead

Monday starts Week 10 at the Legislature — with plenty on the agenda.

Personal property taxes

On Tuesday morning, the House Revenue and Taxation Committee will discuss two competing proposals to repeal personal property taxes. This tax on business supplies, equipment and furnishings provided $38.6 million for schools in 2012, but businesses have long bristled at the tax and its cumbersome paperwork requirements.

The Idaho School Boards Association and the Idaho Association of School Administrators have joined forces with cities and counties on House Bill 272, which would allow a business an exemption on $100,000 of personal property. This is an $18 million to $19 million tax cut.

The Idaho Association of Commerce and Industry’s version would phase out the tax over seven years. Schools and other local governments would be reimbursed — but not on future tax levies.

Revenue and Taxation will discuss both proposals, but no vote is expected.

Charter schools

The Senate Education Committee is scheduled to vote Monday afternoon on House Bill 206, which would provide $1.4 million in stipends for charter school facilities; and House Bill 221, which would allow universities and nonprofit groups to authorize new charter schools.

Reduction in force

Topping Monday’s House Education Committee agenda is House Bill 261, a work force reduction bill. This would allow school boards to consider factors other than seniority if they must cut staff.

Early retirement

The House could vote as early as Monday on Senate Bill 1089, which would, once again, eliminate the teacher early retirement program.

Sen. Bob Nonini, R-Coeur d’Alene

Math and science teachers

Also sitting on the House docket: Senate Bill 1092, which dedicates $4.85 million to hire math and science teachers.

Income tax credits

Sen. Bob Nonini, R-Coeur d’Alene, will be back before Revenue and Taxation Monday morning with a new version of a bill providing income tax credits for donors who contribute to private school scholarships.


Kevin Richert

Kevin Richert

Senior reporter and blogger Kevin Richert specializes in education politics and education policy. He has more than 30 years of experience in Idaho journalism. He is a frequent guest on "Idaho Reports" on Idaho Public Television and "Idaho Matters" on Boise State Public Radio. Follow Kevin on Twitter: @KevinRichert. He can be reached at [email protected]

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