Legislative Weekly Update Reports

The Utah State Legislative Session begins on Monday, January, 23, 2017 and will run through Thursday, March 9, 2017. We hope you continue to check this site for updates and SLCC activities happening throughout the session. Check out links to weekly updates, useful information and resources.

Legislative Update Reports

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2017 Legislative Update – Week 1

January 23 - 28, 2017

Overview

The 2017 Session of the Utah State Legislature got underway Monday, January 23, and will conclude Thursday, March 9. It is anticipated there will be several bills with potential impact to the Utah System of Higher Education and Salt Lake Community College.

2017-2018 Budget

According to the State’s consensus revenue estimates, the State has a slightly smaller budget surplus than last year. Revenue growth in the coming year is projected to result in $187 million in new funds:

New Total Revenue Available (Education and General Fund, in millions):

 

Ongoing

One-time

General Fund

$ 91

$ 15

Education Fund

$ 182

$ -21

Total new available

$ 273

$ -6

An updated revenue estimate will be available in mid-February.

The Higher Education Appropriations Subcommittee met twice this week, focusing on the existing base budget for higher education. There are several new subcommittee members, including a new Senate Chair, Evan Vickers. Other new members are Senators Deidre Henderson and Don Ipson; Representatives Brad Daw, Karen Kwan, Kelly Miles, Val Potter and Mike Winder.

Commissioner Buhler, along with Regents’ Chair Dan Campbell gave introductory remarks providing an overview of higher education in Utah. Some highlights:

  • 9 out of 10 jobs filled since 2008 have been filled by workers with a Bachelor’s degree or higher.
  • An educated workforce is by far the top priority for those recruiting businesses to Utah.
  • USHE institutions project adding 52,000 students by 2025 - the equivalent to current enrollments at Weber State University, Southern Utah University, Dixie State University and Snow College combined.
  • Utah public universities have the 4th lowest tuition, lowest student debt and the lowest percent of graduates with debt in the country.
  • Utah’s public universities are some of the most efficient: they are among the top 10 state in the number of degrees and certificates awarded last year and have actually reduced the number of executive positions since 1988.
  • 2015-16 USHE graduates will earn $400 million in additional wages over those with only a high school diploma.
  • 85% of USHE students graduate in high market demand areas.

Commissioner Buhler updated the committee with the 2017 Progress Report to the 10-Year Strategic Plan adopted by the Board of Regents in 2016. The 2017 Progress Report, adopted by the Board of Regents on January 20, provides an update on the metrics, the investment in higher education, and outlines the next steps of the Commissioner’s Office for 2017.

The Commissioner briefly previewed the 2017-18 USHE Operating Budget Request, which will be considered in greater detail in the coming weeks. Starting next week, individual USHE institutions will be updating the committee:

  • Tuesday (January 31): Salt Lake Community College

Capital Budget:The Infrastructure Subcommittee will begin hearing requests for capital development funding on Thursday, February 6 and 8, 2017. The agendas are available here.


Legislation of Interest

HB 24, Student Prosperity Plan - Tax Amendments - Rep. Jeremy Peterson, creates a method for corporations to donate to a fund that assists qualifying low-income students to save for college. The bill passed unanimously in the House Revenue and Tax Committee and awaits further consideration by the House.

HB 54, Campus Free Speech Amendments by Rep. Kim Coleman creates requirements for USHE institutions related to free speech activity. The legislation replicates policies related to regarding free-speech already in place at USHE institutions. The bill awaits House committee consideration.

HB 100, Institutions of Higher Education Disclosure Requirements by Rep. Kim Coleman requires institutions of higher education to disclose information including job placement, wage earnings and average student debt programs at USHE institutions . The bill awaits House committee consideration.

HB 103, Campus Anti-harassment Act by Rep. Kim Coleman defines discriminatory harassment and stipulates that an institution of higher education must take action against discriminatory harassment immediately after gaining knowledge of the act. The bill was scheduled for consideration by the House Judiciary Committee, but was pulled from the agenda by the sponsor.

SB 35, Veterans Tuition Gap Program Act Amendments by Sen. Escamilla Amends the federal programs to which the Veterans Tuition Gap Program (the program) relates and removes the requirement that a qualifying veteran using the program qualify for a federal program. The bill the Senate Education Committee and awaits consideration by the full Senate.

The Higher Education Appropriations Subcommittee met twice this week SLCC presented on our budget request on January 31. President Huftalin advocated for the Board of Regents’ Budget unified budget priorities and highlighted notable accomplishments of SLCC.

The subcommittee, as directed by the Executive Appropriations Committee, advanced three major adjustments to the base budget of higher education (current budgeted funds):

  1. Adopt new performance measure for all 52 line items of the higher education budget (detailed here). These metrics were compiled by the Legislative Fiscal Analyst and are not associated with the performance funding model adopted by the Board of Regents in 2015.
  2. Adjust the funding ratio of state funds vs. tuition funds that have funded compensation costs to higher education. For over twenty years, the Legislature and public higher education have held constant the ratio funding compensation costs at 75% from state funds and 25% of tuition funds. The proposal this year, originally presented by the Legislative Fiscal Analyst in September 2016, and now being advanced by the Higher Education Appropriations Subcommittee, would adjust this ratio for compensation to follow the present overall mix of state dollars and tuition dollars currently funding higher education – which has been about 50% state funds and 50% tuition for the past few years. This adjustment would result in a $7 million budget cut in state funds to higher education.
  3. Cut the overall higher education budget 2%. Across-the-board cuts like this have been used in recent years to identify potential funds for reallocation. However, such proposals have not been advanced by the Higher Education Appropriations Subcommittee since 2011. This cut would result in a $17.6 million loss to public higher education.

While it is hoped the 75% state funds to 25% tuition mix for compensation will be retained this year, and the 2 percent cuts restored, these proposals add to the challenge of increasing state funding for critical higher education needs in the state.

Legislation of Interest

HB 100, Institutions of Higher Education Disclosure Requirements by Rep. Kim Coleman requires institutions of higher education to disclose information including job placement, wage earnings and average student debt programs at USHE institutions. The bill unanimously passed the House Education Committee and awaits further consideration by the full House.

HB 249, Higher Education Financial Literacy Amendments, by Rep. Robert Spendlove requires USHE institutions to notify students annually of their current student loan balance and projected payments. USHE is working with the sponsor on the implementation details of this proposal and currently is in the House Rules Committee awaiting a standing committee assignment.

HB 251, Campus Advocate Confidentiality Amendments, by Rep. Angela Romero prohibits the disclosure of confidential communications related to advocacy services at a Utah institution of higher education. The legislation would prevent institutions or law enforcement from disclosing certain confidential information reported by students unless otherwise required by specific state or federal statute. The bill awaits its first House Standing Committee hearing.

HB 275, Utah Administrative Rulemaking Act Amendments, by Rep. Brian Green removes the exemption for higher education from Administrative Rulemaking Act for policies related to students. Currently, there are almost 15,000 policies maintained by the Board of Regents and USHE institutions that would need to be reviewed and submitted for administrative rulemaking. The bill awaits its first House Standing Committee hearing.

HCR 16, Concurrent Resolution Declaring Mental Health Issues To Be A Public Health Crisis At Utah Higher Education Institutions, by Rep. Ed Redd declares mental health issues to be a public health crisis at Utah higher education institutions. It strongly urges state agencies, local health authorities, non-profit groups, and higher education entities to seek productive, long-term solutions to address this crisis. The bill awaits its first House Standing Committee hearing.

SB 35, Veterans Tuition Gap Program Act Amendments, by Sen. Escamilla amends the federal programs to which the Veterans Tuition Gap Program (the program) relates and removes the requirement that a qualifying veteran using the program qualify for a federal program. The bill unanimously passed the Senate Education Committee and awaits consideration by the full Senate.

SB 117 (1st Sub.), Performance Funding Revisions by Sen. Ann Millner provides ongoing funding dedicated the performance outcomes proposed by the Board of Regents and adopted by the Legislature in 2015. The bill received unanimous support of the Senate Education Committee and awaits further consideration by the full Senate.

Higher Education Appropriations Subcommittee

The Higher Education Appropriations Subcommittee met for its final scheduled hearing this week, focusing on the Board of Regents’ budget priorities for USHE. The committee also considered other budget requests.

Understandably, the top priority of the subcommittee is to restore the 2% across-the-board budget cut. The subcommittee also voted to hold the compensation mix of state funds and tuition funds to the traditional 75% (state funds)/25% (tuition funds), despite the proposal by the Legislative Fiscal Analyst in September 2016

to reduce state funds to that mix. If adopted by the Executive Appropriations Committee, this will help to minimize a 1st tier tuition increase. The subcommittee also highly prioritized compensation increases, voting for the same compensation increases for higher education employees that are made for state employees, including increases for health insurance costs.

With the 2% budget cut restored and the traditional compensation mix established, the Higher Education Appropriations Subcommittee then ranked most of the Board of Regents’ top priorities—Student Growth and Market Demand Programs, along with the top priorities of the Utah College of Applied Technology. While the subcommittee did not prioritize the Regents’ performance funding priority, it ranked the proposed Performance Based Funding legislation (SB 117, 1st Sub.), sponsored by Sen. Ann Millner, in support of its passage. That bill would create an ongoing funding mechanism for performance based funding to USHE and UCAT institutions. Below is the subcommittee’s prioritization:

1 USHE & UCAT Restoration of 2% Subcommittee reduction $19,174,000
2 USHE & UCAT 75%/25%, Compensation* $4,098,400
3 USHE Student Growth $3,985,400
4 USHE & UCAT Strategic Workforce Investment $2,000,000
5 USHE Market Demand Programs $10,000,000
6 UCAT Market Demand Programs $4,000,000
7 USHE Regents' Scholarship $8,000,000
8 USHE & UCAT Performance Based Funding (SB 117)  
9 UCAT SWATC Workplace Foundations $165,000
10 USHE Police Officers' Scholarship Fund $200,000
11 USHE Library Consortium $1,300,000
12 USHE Athletic Performance $3,000,000
13 UCAT Campus Overhead $1,000,000
14 Huntsman Cancer Institute-Replace Tobacco Funding $2,000,000
15 UCAT Equipment $1,500,000
16 Huntsman Cancer Institute $1,120,000
17 USHE Utah Campus Compact $30,000
18 USHE Nursing Consortium $2,625,000
*1% Compensation increase amount shown, USHE Increases=State Employees


These recommendations will be advanced to the Executive Appropriations Committee along with recommendations from the other nine appropriations subcommittees in the formulation of the state’s FY 2019 budget of new revenues. Further budget action is not expected until new revenue figures are announced towards the end of February 2017.

Legislation of Interest

HB 249 (1st Sub.), Higher Education Financial Literacy Amendments, by Rep. Robert Spendlove requires higher education to annually notify students who have taken out a loan for college directing them to their loan balance as well as a repayment calculator. The bill is in the House Rules Committee awaiting a standing committee assignment.

HB 251, Campus Advocate Confidentiality Amendments, by Rep. Angela Romero prohibits the disclosure of confidential communications related to advocacy services at a Utah institution of higher education. The bill awaits its first House Standing Committee hearing.

HB 326, Campus Sexual Violence Protection Act, by Rep. Kim Coleman allows an institution of higher education to report an allegation of sexual violence to a law enforcement agency and enacts other provisions related to the duties of an institution of higher education in circumstances related to sexual violence. The bill awaits its first House Standing Committee hearing.

HB 334, Academic Freedom and Protection Act, by Rep. Kim Coleman prohibits a USHE institution from taking adverse action against faculty in retaliation for certain expression. Existing Regents’ policy already requires institutions to protect academic freedom. The bill awaits its first House Standing Committee hearing.

HCR 16, Concurrent Resolution Declaring Mental Health Issues To Be A Public Health Crisis At Utah Higher Education Institutions, by Rep. Ed Redd declares mental health issues to be a public health crisis at Utah higher education institutions. It strongly urges state agencies, local health authorities, non-profit groups, and higher education entities to seek productive, long-term solutions to address this crisis. The bill received unanimous support from the House Health and Human Services Committee and awaits consideration of the full House.

SB 117 (1st Sub.), Performance Funding Revisions, by Sen. Ann Millner provides ongoing funding dedicated the performance outcomes proposed by the Board of Regents and adopted by the Legislature in 2015. The bill received unanimous support of the Senate Education Committee and awaits further consideration by the full Senate.

The Higher Education Appropriations Subcommittee

The Higher Education Appropriations Subcommittee Chairs presented the subcommittee’s priorities to the Executive Appropriations Committee on Thursday. Final 2017-18 budget revenue projections were announced on February 17. The Legislature will have $88 million more than it had expected for next year’s budget, leaders announced Friday based on new quarterly revenue estimates:

Total New Revenue Available (Education and General Funds, in millions):

 

Ongoing

One-time

General Fund

$115

$5

Education Fund

$257

$8

Total new available

$372

$13

Further budget action will be taken by Executive Appropriations Committee in the final weeks of the legislative session.

Legislation of Interest

HB 100, Institutions of Higher Education Disclosure Requirements by Rep. Kim Coleman requires institutions of higher education to disclose information including job placement, wage earnings and average student debt programs at USHE institutions. The bill unanimously passed the House and awaits further consideration by the Senate Education Committee.

HB 249 (1st Sub.), Higher Education Financial Literacy Amendments, by Rep. Robert Spendlove requires higher education to annually notify students who have taken out a loan for college directing them to their loan balance as well as a repayment calculator. The bill was approved by the House Education Committee and awaits consideration by the full House.

HB 251, Campus Advocate Confidentiality Amendments, by Rep. Angela Romero prohibits the disclosure of confidential communications related to advocacy services at a Utah institution of higher education. The bill passed the House Judiciary committee and awaits consideration by the full House.

HB 275, Utah Administrative Rulemaking Act Amendments, by Rep. Brian Green removes the exemption for higher education from Administrative Rulemaking Act for policies related to students. Currently, there are almost 15,000 policies maintained by the Board of Regents and USHE institutions that would need to be reviewed and submitted for administrative rulemaking. The bill awaits its first House Standing Committee hearing.

HB 284, Student Right to Active Counsel, by Rep. Kim Coleman introduced similar legislation in the 2016 Session. The Legislature ultimately did not adopt the proposed legislation. In July 2016, the Board of Regents adopted policy that outlines required due process for disciplinary actions and included the role of active counsel in certain proceedings. This bill is unnecessary given the policy already adopted. The bill passed House Judiciary Committee awaiting consideration by the full House.

HB 326, Campus Sexual Violence Protection Act, by Rep. Kim Coleman allows an institution of higher education to report an allegation of sexual violence to a law enforcement agency and enacts other provisions related to the duties of an institution of higher education in circumstances related to sexual violence. The bill passed the House Judiciary Committee and awaits consideration by the full House.

HB 334, Academic Freedom and Protection Act, by Rep. Kim Coleman prohibits a USHE institution from taking adverse action against faculty in retaliation for certain expression. Existing Regents’ policy and state and federal laws already requires institutions to protect academic freedom. The bill awaits its first House Standing Committee hearing.

HCR 16, Concurrent Resolution Declaring Mental Health Issues to Be a Public Health Crisis at Utah Higher Education Institutions, by Rep. Ed Redd declares mental health issues to be a public health crisis at Utah higher education institutions. It strongly urges state agencies, local health authorities, non-profit groups, and higher education entities to seek productive, long-term solutions to address this crisis. The bill received unanimous support from the House Health and Human Services Committee and awaits consideration of the full House.

SB 35, Veterans Tuition Gap Program Act Amendments, by Sen. Escamilla amends the federal programs to which the Veterans Tuition Gap Program applies. The bill unanimously passed the Senate and awaits consideration by the full House, after unanimous vote in support by the House Health and Human Services Committee.

SB 117 (1st Sub.), Performance Funding Revisions, by Sen. Ann Millner provides ongoing funding dedicated the performance outcomes proposed by the Board of Regents and adopted by the Legislature in 2015. The bill received unanimous support of the Senate Education Committee and awaits further consideration by the full Senate.

SB 238, Higher Education Governance Revisions, by Sen. Ann Millner changes the name of UCAT (to Utah System of Technical Colleges and of individual campuses to technical colleges) and makes several significant changes to the governance of public higher education in Utah. The legislation clarifies the roles and mission of the Board of Regents and Boards of Trustees and changes how Regents are appointed. The legislation also changes how new academic programs are approved, codifies how presidential searches are to be conducted, and defines the primary missions of USHE institutions. The Commissioner and the Board’s Executive committee have worked closely with the bill sponsor on clarifying amendments that are expected to be adopted this week. The bill awaits consideration by the Senate Education Committee.

2017-2018 Budget

With revised revenue projections announced last week, significant budget decisions continue to loom before a final budget takes shape. There is still a lot of work on the budget as well as several bills that continue their march through the legislative process.

 

Key Legislation

HB 100, Institutions of Higher Education Disclosure Requirements by Rep. Kim Coleman requires institutions of higher education to disclose information including job placement, wage earnings and average student debt programs at USHE institutions. The bill unanimously passed the Senate Education Committee and awaits further consideration by the full Senate.

HB 249 (1st Sub.), Higher Education Financial Literacy Amendments, by Rep. Robert Spendlove requires higher education to annually notify students who have taken out a loan for college directing them to their loan balance as well as a repayment calculator. The bill was approved by the House Education Committee and awaits consideration by the full House.

HB 251, Campus Advocate Confidentiality Amendments, by Rep. Angela Romero prohibits the disclosure of confidential communications related to advocacy services at a Utah institution of higher education. The bill passed the House Judiciary committee and awaits consideration by the full House.

HB 284, Student Right to Active Counsel, by Rep. Kim Coleman introduced similar legislation in the 2016 Session. The Legislature ultimately did not adopt the proposed legislation. In July 2016, the Board of Regents adopted policy that outlines required due process for disciplinary actions and included the role of active counsel in certain proceedings. This bill is unnecessary given the policy already adopted. The bill passed House Judiciary Committee awaiting consideration by the full House.

HB 326, Campus Sexual Violence Protection Act, by Rep. Kim Coleman allows an institution of higher education to report an allegation of sexual violence to a law enforcement agency and enacts other provisions related to the duties of an institution of higher education in circumstances related to sexual violence. The bill passed the House Judiciary Committee and awaits consideration by the full House.

HB 334, Academic Freedom and Protection Act, by Rep. Kim Coleman prohibits a USHE institution from taking adverse action against faculty in retaliation for certain expression. Existing Regents’ policy and state and federal laws already provide due process and protect academic freedom. The bill awaits its first House Standing Committee hearing.

HB 275, Utah Administrative Rulemaking Act Amendments, by Rep. Brian Green removes the exemption for higher education from Administrative Rulemaking Act for policies related to students. Currently, there are almost 15,000 policies maintained by the Board of Regents and USHE institutions that would need to be reviewed and submitted for administrative rulemaking. The bill awaits its first House Standing Committee hearing.

HCR 16, Concurrent Resolution Declaring Mental Health Issues To Be A Public Health Crisis At Utah Higher Education Institutions, by Rep. Ed Redd declares mental health issues to be a public health crisis at Utah higher education institutions. It strongly urges state agencies, local health authorities, non-profit groups, and higher education entities to seek productive, long-term solutions to address this crisis. The bill received unanimous support from the Senate Health and Human Services Committee and awaits consideration of the full Senate.

SB 35, Veterans Tuition Gap Program Act Amendments, by Sen. Escamilla amends the federal programs to which the Veterans Tuition Gap Program applies. The bill was unanimously passed by the Senate and the House.

SB 117 (1st Sub.), Performance Funding Revisions, by Sen. Ann Millner provides ongoing funding dedicated the performance outcomes proposed by the Board of Regents and adopted by the Legislature in 2015. The bill unanimously passed the Senate and awaits consideration by the House.

SB 238 (1st Sub.), Higher Education Governance Revisions, by Sen. Ann Millner changes the name of UCAT (to Utah System of Technical Colleges and of individual campuses to technical colleges) and makes several significant changes to the governance of public higher education in Utah. The legislation clarifies the roles and mission of the Board of Regents and Boards of Trustees and changes how Regents are appointed. The legislation also changes how new academic programs are approved, codifies how presidential searches are to be conducted, and defines the primary missions of USHE institutions. Amendments proposed by the Commissioner’s Office were included in the 1st Substitute which unanimously passed the Senate Education Committee, it now awaits action by the full Senate.

SB 255, Funding for Education Systems Amendments, by Sen. Howard Stephenson would cap, until 2022, any additional revenues from the Education Fund (income tax) to the state higher education system. The mix of funds higher ed has been budgeted over the years varies between the Education Fund and the General Fund (Sales Tax) – the two primary funding sources of the state’s budget. In effect, higher education has been a balancing wheel between the two funds to help the legislature in balancing the budget. This restricts the legislature’s flexibility and would likely make it more difficult for the state to fund critical higher education needs over the next five years. This could also result in greater reliance on tuition. The bill awaits consideration by the Senate Education Committee.

SB 256, Regents Scholarship Amendments, by Sen. Lyle Hillyard makes major administrative changes to the scholarship program, after the high school graduating class of 2018, to improve the student application experience as well as enhance coordination with institutions the award recipients attend. This will ensure better use of state aid resources as well as create an overall better experience for students. This legislation does not alter or weaken the existing academic requirements for the scholarship. It also removes outdated language in the statute. The bill awaits consideration by the Senate Education Committee.

2017-2018 Budget

The Executive Appropriations Committee approved its first round of funding items on Friday. For higher education, initial items include:

  • Compensation: 2% labor market adjustment increase (plus funding for health insurance rate increases), with the ratio of funding at 75% from state funds and 25% of tuition funds.
  • Student Enrollment Growth: $3.5 million ongoing for new student growth for the current year. This is the first time in a number of years that student growth in higher education has been explicitly funded (with the exception of Acute Equity funding appropriated by the Legislature in 2014).
  • Performance Funding: $6.5 million ongoing for performance funding. This is the initial funding tied to SB117 that will codify the performance funding model of the Board of Regents, which has been in place for four years.
  • Regents’ Scholarship: $8 million ongoing for growth in the Regents’ Scholarship. For several years, growth in the program has been funded on one-time funds. This ongoing funding, along with the changes being proposed in SB256, will help ensure long-term sustainability.
  • 2% Base Budget Replacement: Earlier in the 2017 session, the Legislature approved a 2% base budget cut to higher education – a cut of $19.2 million. Last week’s approval restores those cuts back to the higher education base budget.

Legislation of Interest

HB 100, Institutions of Higher Education Disclosure Requirements by Rep. Kim Coleman requires institutions of higher education to disclose information including job placement, wage earnings and average student debt programs at USHE institutions. The bill unanimously passed the House and Senate, awaits final concurrence by the House due to amendments made in the Senate.

HB 249 (1st Sub.), Higher Education Financial Literacy Amendments by Rep. Robert Spendlove requires higher education to annually notify students who have taken out a loan for college directing them to their loan balance as well as a repayment calculator. The bill was approved by the Senate Education Committee and awaits consideration by the full Senate.

HB 251, Campus Advocate Confidentiality Amendments by Rep. Angela Romero prohibits the disclosure of confidential communications related to advocacy services at a Utah institution of higher education. The bill passed the Senate Judiciary Committee and awaits final consideration by the full Senate.

HB 284, Student Right to Active Counsel, by Rep. Kim Coleman introduced similar legislation in the 2016 Session. The Legislature ultimately did not adopt the proposed legislation. In July 2016, the Board of Regents adopted policy that outlines required due process for disciplinary actions and included the role of active counsel in certain proceedings. This bill is unnecessary given the policy already adopted. The bill awaits consideration by the Senate Government Operations and Political Subdivisions Committee.

HB 326, Campus Sexual Violence Protection Act,, by Rep. Kim Coleman allows an institution of higher education to report an allegation of sexual violence to a law enforcement agency and enacts other provisions related to the duties of an institution of higher education in circumstances related to sexual violence. The bill failed in a vote by the full House.

HCR 16, Concurrent Resolution Declaring Mental Health Issues To Be A Public Health Crisis At Utah Higher Education Institutions , by Rep. Ed Redd declares mental health issues to be a public health crisis at Utah higher education institutions. It strongly urges state agencies, local health authorities, non-profit groups, and higher education entities to seek productive, long-term solutions to address this crisis. The bill received unanimous legislative support by the House and Senate and is expected to be signed by the Governor.

SB 117 (1st Sub.), Performance Funding Revisions, , by Sen. Ann Millner provides ongoing funding dedicated to the performance outcomes proposed by the Board of Regents and adopted by the Legislature in 2015. The bill received unanimous support of the Senate and awaits further consideration by the House Education Committee.

SB 194 (5th Sub.), Utah Data Research Center Act , by Sen. Jacob Anderegg establishes the Utah Data Research Center to coordinate data-centric initiatives between the Utah System of Higher Education, K-12, the Utah Department of Workforce Services and the Department of Health. The Commissioner’s Office already provides substantial data coordination and services regarding student performance and workforce. The bill has passed the full Senate and awaits further consideration by the House.

SB 238, Higher Education Governance Revisions,, by Sen. Ann Millner changes the name of UCAT (to Utah System of Technical Colleges and of individual campuses to technical colleges) and makes several significant changes to the governance of public higher education in Utah. The legislation clarifies the roles and mission of the Board of Regents and Boards of Trustees and changes how Regents are appointed by the Governor. The legislation also changes how new academic programs are approved, codifies how presidential searches are to be conducted, and defines the primary missions of USHE institutions. The Commissioner and the Board’s Executive committee have worked closely with the bill sponsor on clarifying amendments. The bill received unanimous support of the Senate and awaits consideration by the House Economic Development & Workforce Services Committee.

SB 256, Regents Scholarship Amendments,, by Sen. Lyle Hillyard makes major administrative changes to the scholarship program to improve the student application experience as well as enhance coordination with institutions the award recipients attend. This will ensure better use of state aid resources as well as create an overall better experience for students. This legislation does not alter or weaken the existing academic requirements for the scholarship. It also removes extensive outdated language in the statute. The bill received unanimous support by the Senate and awaits consideration by the House Public Utilities, Energy, and Technology Committee.

2017 Legislative Update
The 2017 Legislative Session concluded on March 9, 2017. There were over 100 bills impacting public higher education during the 2017 Legislative Session on a variety of issues including mental health, student debt and student privacy. Below is a summary of key legislation that impacted the Utah System of Higher Education and Salt Lake Community College.

LEGISLATION PASSED:

HB 54, Campus Free Speech Amendments, by Rep. Kim Coleman, creates requirements for USHE Institutions related to free speech activity. The legislation replicates policies related to regarding free-speech already in place at USHE institutions.

HB55 (2nd Sub.), Governmental Nonprofit Entity Compliance, by Rep. Kim Coleman, establishes Requirements for governmental nonprofit entities, subjecting them to regulations such as the Open Public Meetings Act, the Government Records Access and Management Act (GRAMA) and Fiscal Procedures for Interlaced Entities. This impacts certain nonprofit entities affiliated with USHE institution in which the institutions have controlling interest.

HB 100, Institutions of Higher Education Disclosure Requirements, by Rep. Coleman, requires Institutions of higher education to disclose information including job placement, wage earnings, averagestudentdebtandthe amountoftaxsubsidyforprogramsatUSHEinstitutions.

HB 156 (1st Sub.), State Job Application Process, by Rep. Sandra Hollins, prohibits a public employerfrom requiringjobapplicantstodisclosepastcriminalconvictionsbeforeaninitialinterviewfor employment.Certain exemptionsareallowed,includingemployerswhoseprimarypurposeis performing financial or fiduciary functions.

HB 160 Campaign Contribution Solicitation Amendments, by Rep. Patrice Arent prohibits a government officer or employee from using government email to solicit for political purposes, including for or against aballot proposition,foragift,donationorcontribution.

HB 198, Concealed Carry Amendments, by Rep. Karianne Lisonbee, establishes a provisional permit to carry a concealed firearm for individuals under 21 years of age.

HB 249 (1st Sub.), Higher Education Financial Literacy Amendments, by Rep. Robert Spendlove, requires higher education to annually notify students who have taken out a loan for college directing them to their loan balance as well as a repayment calculator.

HB 251, Campus Advocate Confidentiality Amendments, by Rep. Angela Romero, prohibits the disclosureof confidentialcommunicationsrelatedtoadvocacyservicesataUtahinstitutionof higher education.

HB 431 (3rd Sub., Government Employees Reimbursement Amendments, by Rep. Tim Quinn prohibits government officers or employees from making personal purchases with public funds, including debt on behalf of or payable by a governmental entity. The bill was amended to allow recourse for unintended purchases. The bill established an administrative penalty for officers or employees who are found to be making a personal expenditure.

HCR 16, Concurrent Resolution Declaring Mental Health Issues To Be A Public Health Crisis At Utah Higher Education Institutions, by Rep. Ed Redd declares mental health issues to be a public health crisis at Utah higher education institutions. It strongly urges state agencies, local health authorities, non-profit groups, and higher education entities to seek productive, long-term solutions to address this crisis.

SB14 (2nd Sub.), Emergency Telephone Service Amendments, by Sen. Wayne Harper, requires multi-line telephone systems to provide geo-location information for a public safety answering point and requires multi-line phone systems to be capable of accessing 911 services directly.

SB 35, Veterans Tuition Gap Program Act Amendments, by Sen. Escamilla, amends the federal programs to which the Veterans Tuition Gap Program (the program) relates and removes the requirementthataqualifying veteranusingtheprogramqualifyforafederalprogram.

SB 117 (4th Sub.), Performance Funding Revisions, by Sen. Ann Millner, provides ongoing funding dedicated the performance outcomes proposed by the Board of Regents and adopted
by the Legislature in 2015.

SB 149 (1st Sub.), Financial Education and Savings Plan to Benefit At-risk Children, by Sen.
Lincoln Fillmore, creates the Parental Coaching to Encourage Student Savings Program, which provides financial training to parents of economically disadvantaged children attending kindergarten. The program encourages parents to start saving money for their child’s eventual higher education expenses. The program provides a $50 contribution to the 529 savings accounts of economically disadvantaged children if their parents successfully meet the requirements of the program.

SB 194 (5th Sub.), Utah Data Research Center Act), by Sen. Jacob Anderegg, establishes the Utah Data Research Center to coordinate data-centric initiatives between the Utah System of Higher Education, K-12, the Utah Department of Workforce Services and the Department of Health. USHE already provides substantial data coordination and services regarding student performance and workforce.

SB 238, Higher Education Governance Revisions, by Sen. Ann Millner, changes the name of UCAT
(to Utah System of Technical Colleges and of individual campuses to technical colleges) and makes several significant changes to the governance of public higher education in Utah. The legislation clarifiestherolesandmissionof theBoardofRegentsandBoardsofTrusteesandchangeshow Regents are appointed by the Governor. The legislation also changes how new academic programs are approved, codifies how presidential searches are to be conducted, and defines the primary missions of USHE institutions. The Commissioner and the Board’s Executive committee have worked closely with the bill sponsor on clarifying amendments.

SB 243, Revised Uniform Athlete Agents Act, by Sen. Lyle Hillyard, updates existing state statute related to the recruitment and contracting of collegiate athletes. The legislation clarifies definitions, expandsnotification requirementsandprovidesforreciprocalregistrationofathletesbetweenstates.

SB 256, Regents Scholarship Amendments, by Sen. Lyle Hillyard, makes major administrative changes to the scholarship program to improve the student application experience as well as enhance coordination with institutions the award recipients attend. This will ensure better use of state aid resourcesaswellascreatean overallbetterexperienceforstudents.Thislegislationdoesnotalteror weaken the existing academic requirements for the scholarship. It also removes extensive outdated language in the statute.

SB 263 (2nd Sub.), Work Based Learning Amendments, by Sen. Howard Stephenson, charges the Career and Technical Education Board to study work-based learning and the associated benefits and challenges.

SJR 1, Joint Rules Resolution on Funding Mix Determinations, Sen. Jerry Stevenson, adjusts the funding ratio of state funds vs. tuition funds that have funded compensation costs to higher education. For over twenty years,theLegislatureandpublichighereducationhaveheldconstanttheratiofunding compensation costs at 75% from state funds and 25% of tuition funds. This resolution defaults this ratio for compensation to follow the present overall mix of state dollars and tuition dollars currently funding highereducation–whichhasbeenabout 50%statefundsand50%tuitionforthepastfewyears.Intent languagewasadoptedinthisyear’sbudgetbillsto holdthehistorical75/25ratioforthenexttwofiscal years.

SLCC Legislative Presentations