Resolves

124th Legislature

First Regular Session



Chapter 138

H.P. 367 - L.D. 522

Resolve, To Establish the Study Commission Regarding Teachers' Compensation

Emergency preamble. Whereas,  acts and resolves of the Legislature do not become effective until 90 days after adjournment unless enacted as emergencies; and

Whereas,  this resolve establishes the Study Commission Regarding Teachers' Compensation to study the issues confronting citizens of this State who depend on the retention of a stable, experienced corps of professional teachers in this State's public schools to ensure that the State's public school students will acquire the knowledge and skills essential for college, career and citizenship in the 21st century; and

Whereas,  the study must be initiated before the 90-day period expires in order that the study may be completed and a report submitted in time for submission to the next legislative session; and

Whereas,  in the judgment of the Legislature, these facts create an emergency within the meaning of the Constitution of Maine and require the following legislation as immediately necessary for the preservation of the public peace, health and safety; now, therefore, be it

Sec. 1. Commission established. Resolved: That the Study Commission Regarding Teachers' Compensation, referred to in this resolve as "the commission," is established; and be it further

Sec. 2. Commission membership. Resolved: That the commission consists of 8 members appointed as follows:

1. Two Senators, one from each of the 2 political parties having the largest number of members in the Senate, appointed by the President of the Senate;

2. Three members of the House of Representatives, at least one from each of the 2 political parties having the largest number of members in the House, appointed by the Speaker of the House. In appointing members, the Speaker of the House shall consider geographic distribution;

3. One teacher recommended by the President of the Maine Education Association and appointed by the President of the Senate;

4. One superintendent or member of a school board of a school administrative unit, recommended by the President of the Maine School Boards Association and the President of the Maine School Superintendents Association and appointed by the President of the Senate; and

5. One public member holding a professional position outside of public education in human resources management and specializing in compensation, recommended by the Maine State Council of the Society for Human Resource Management and appointed by the Governor; and be it further

Sec. 3. Chairs. Resolved: That the first-named Senate member is the Senate chair and the first-named House of Representatives member is the House chair of the commission; and be it further

Sec. 4. Appointments; convening of commission. Resolved: That all appointments must be made no later than 30 days following the effective date of this resolve. The appointing authorities shall notify the Executive Director of the Legislative Council once all appointments have been completed. Within 15 days after appointment of all members, the chairs shall call and convene the first meeting of the commission, which must be no later than July 1, 2009; and be it further

Sec. 5. Duties. Resolved: That the commission shall study all issues surrounding teachers' compensation, including salaries and benefits. In conducting its review, the commission shall undertake to examine:

1. The effects on teachers' salaries and benefits of the essential programs and services funding system for public education, including the elements of labor market adjustments, student-teacher ratios and a teachers' salary matrix, and alternatives thereto, including the feasibility of salary differentiations based upon differences in cost of living by region;

2. The effects on teachers' salaries of the minimum teachers' salary law and the existing system of state subsidies for substandard salaries;

3. The relationship between and among teachers' salaries and benefits in school administrative units, the amount and distribution of general purpose aid for local schools and amounts raised locally for the support of public schools;

4. The relationship between teachers' salaries and benefits in this State and in other states;

5. The relationship between teachers' salaries and benefits and salaries and benefits paid to practitioners in other comparable professions;

6. The effects of inflation on the real value of teachers' salaries and the minimum salary amount required by law;

7. Practices in other states that mandate payment of minimum salaries based on experience and education to all teachers and the costs and consequences;

8. Factors relating to the age, experience, recruitment, retention and mobility of the State's corps of professional teachers;

9. Alternatives to salary systems based on college credits or degrees earned and experience, including salary systems based on professional learning, teachers’ performance or other factors;

10. Collective bargaining alternatives in determination of salaries and benefits at the local school administrative unit level; and

11. Any other factors that the commission considers relevant to teachers’ compensation; and be it further

Sec. 6. Staff assistance. Resolved: That the Legislative Council shall provide necessary staffing services to the commission; and be it further

Sec. 7. Information. Resolved: That in the performance of its duties, the commission:

1. May request statistical data and other information from the Department of Education, the Department of Labor, the State Planning Office or other state agencies, which must provide such information in their possession; and

2. Must provide an opportunity for interested persons, organizations and members of the public to address and submit information to the commission; and be it further

Sec. 8. Report. Resolved: That, no later than December 1, 2009, the commission shall submit a report that includes its findings and recommendations, including suggested legislation, to the Joint Standing Committee on Education and Cultural Affairs. The Joint Standing Committee on Education and Cultural Affairs is authorized to introduce a bill related to the subject matter of the report to the Second Regular Session of the 124th Legislature upon receipt of the report.

Emergency clause. In view of the emergency cited in the preamble, this legislation takes effect when approved.

Office of the Revisor of Statutes
State House, Room 108
Augusta, ME 04333