Sacramento – Today, the Assembly Business and Professions Committee killed legislation authored by Assemblywoman Sharon Runner (R-Antelope Valley) to help streamline the bureaucratic school construction process.
“It is mind boggling to me how bills that will cut costs, save schools thousands and thousands of dollars, and streamline bureaucracy get voted down with virtually no debate, on a partisan line vote,” Runner said. “This is a perfect example of the kind of strangle hold special interests still have on the Capitol.”
Runner’s bills voted down today were geared at helping school districts build and repair their schools. The first bill, AB 2832, would have permitted flexibility in construction and repair contracts. With this added flexibility, schools would have been able to use money where they needed it most.
The second bill, AB 2833, would have changed an out-dated amount of $15,000 to $50,000 for a minimum bid. Changing the amount would have let schools get their repairs done for up to $50,000 before having to go through the lengthy bidding process, sometimes costing nearly $5,000 to do.
Both bills were sponsored Coalition for Adequate School Housing (CASH). At the hearing, Tim Lopez with the Riverside County Board of Education handed out a document outlining the exact cost savings to Riverside County schools that would have resulted had the legislation passed. Both bills were voted down on a partisan line vote.
“Today children suffered while special interests won,” Runner concluded.