By Nora Thompson
Several bills have recently passed the Arizona house and have moved into the Senate. If passed they could affect Pima Community College and it’s students. They were brought up at the most recent board meeting by Chancellor Lee Lambert.
HB 2172: Non-lethal weapons bill currently has passed the house and it’s assigned to the Senate education committee. This bill would allow students to carry non-lethal weapons on Arizona public college campuses. If it passes, students would be allowed to carry weapons “with a low probability of fatality or permanent injury.”
House Bill 2482: foster care tuition waivers is now assigned to the Senate education Appropriations Committee. Students in foster care or that were previously in foster care on Arizona can receive a tuition waiver scholarship for any Arizona university or community college. The person must be currently in foster care and be at least 13 or previously in foster care at the age of 13 or be adopted out of foster care when the person was at least 13. They also must be Arizona residents and us citizens.
House Bill 2563: Free expression policies has passed the house and moved to the Senate. This bill would force Arizona colleges and universities to create a policy on free expression based on the fact that colleges’ primary functions are to teach students and discover new things and the college must try and achieve this by not infringing on individual rights or freedom of expression. The college is not responsible for protecting their students from speech protected by the second amendment. 2563 would also allow students to sue each for infringing on their freedom of expression.
Proposal to extend prop 301: Arizona legislature passed a bill extending prop 301, the extra .6% tax rate that brings in $667 million dollars annually. The bill will extend the tax rate into 2041 as it was set to expire in 2021.
House Bill 2524: This has to do with under-utilized schools. It has cleared but has not be cleared by the committee of the whole house. In this bill, the Arizona School Facilities Board would take control of a school if they deem the school is below 25 percent of its capacity.
House Bill 2526 on Career Technical education District: This will rename JTED to Career Technical Education District that has cleared the house unanimously and it’s been transferred to the Senate.