PUBLISHED: 4:53 PM on Wednesday, March 12, 2008
Education committee created
Jurisdiction over Public Education and the University of Alaska
JUNEAU - The Alaska Senate's commitment to education was demonstrated this week when it passed Senate Concurrent Resolution 15, which would change the Uniform Rules of the Legislature by creating a standing committee on education.

"Education is, and always will be, one of the Alaska Legislature's core responsibilities," said Senator Gary Stevens. "This committee will be dedicated to all issues pertaining to public education in our state."

Currently legislation affecting education policy gets lumped into the committee with jurisdiction over Health & Social Services. The standing committee will oversee the state's public school system and the University of Alaska. The idea to create the committee came from the Joint Legislative Education Funding Task Force, it made creation of the committee its first and immediate recommendation for this session

"Alaska is one of only 3 states in the country with a Legislature that does not have a stand-alone committee dedicated to education policy. Considering our Constitutional mandate on education, I think it's timely and appropriate to create this committee," Stevens said.

SCR 15 was transmitted to the Alaska House this week for its consideration. If it passes the House both legislative bodies will have a standing Committee on Education beginning in 2009.

For more information, contact Tim Lamkin at (907) 465-4925.