Legislative Report for Week Five, Rep. Rick Holman, Feb, 5, 2015
Guns in Schools Again? HB1195 is similar to a bill that was defeated in the Senate last session. The measure would allow a class 1 concealed weapon license holder to carry a firearm on school property if the individual has the approval of the school board. It would also require training with local law enforcement for school emergencies and could mandate an exam to determine if the person is “psychologically fit” to respond to an active shooter situation. The bill’s sponsor pointed out that in some rural districts it could take 30 minutes or more for law enforcement to respond.
At a packed hearing the executive director of the ND Council of Educational Leaders said arming teachers and staff with guns “would cause them to take on significant responsibility and have a chance of creating expensive lawsuits if something goes wrong”. This is not about education and is beyond the expertise and experience of most school personnel. It passed the House but I voted against it. Hopefully the Senators will put this one away again.
As Better option for School Safety, HB1388 would create a pilot program for funding school resource officers in rural school districts. The proposal would provide $1,050,000 in general fund dollars to the Department of Public Instruction for school resource officers. School districts who qualify for the pilot program would contract with a local law enforcement agency for two years.. Education officials testified that HB1388 is the best option for addressing guns in schools.
Common Core Curriculum: Here’s an update on HB 1461 which would remove the state’s schools from participation in the Common Core Standards. On Tuesday, the House Education Committee voted 9-4 Do Not Pass and have forwarded to the full House for a floor vote on Wednesday, February 11th. I’m sure there will be lots of attention on that day. I will continue to support our teachers, schools, and trust them to continue providing high quality education that we are used to. I hope that we can put this fire out and get on with business.
Rick Holman, Feb 5, 2015
622 153rd Ave NE, Mayville, ND 58257-9000