Time might be running out on the state Senate leader’s efforts to put the Department of Higher Education together with the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education.
The situation is simple for Cape Girardeau Senator Jason Crowelll: “What’s the makeup of this board going to be (and) what are its powers?” He has solved part of that problem by changing the bill to set up a governing commission modeled on the state transportation commission–three Democrats and three Republicans.
But the Senate so far has not agreed on the powers of the new governing board, especially in its coordination of higher education instituting. Sponsor Charlie Shields of St. Joseph proposes letting the new board withhold ten percent of appropriations from schools that don’t cooperate and collaborate as well as the new education board wants them too. Shields spent part of yesterday meeting with his critics, hoping to work things out well enough to advance his bill today.
But the clock is ticking toward adjournment three weeks from tomorrow. Floor Leader Kevin Engler of Farmington has told Shields it might be time to pull the plug on his bill if it doesn’t move today.
The session ends May 14th.