Dear LHEC Superintendents and Board Members: 


The LHEC Steering Committee has continued to advocate in support of public education in our region. We are pleased that many of our priorities made it into the State budget and subsequent legislation. 


The 2022 New York State Legislative Session concluded on Saturday, June 4th. The following legislation was acted on by both Houses of the Legislature this Session and are either awaiting action by the Governor or have been acted on by the Governor: 


LHEC supports legislation that: 

  • Authorizes granting of tenure without APPR scores for 2021-22 school year. 
  • Defines making a threat of mass harm at a school as a crime, when threat causes a lockdown or evacuation. 
  • Amends Open Meetings Law to permit virtual participation in board meetings as long as quorum is achieved in person and the public can view meeting and participate remotely. 
  • Improves district access to the statewide immunization database for immunization records for certain students.   
  • Clarifies definition of a "public body" in Open Meetings Law so that a committee or subcommittee must have two or more members and require a quorum to meet the definition.
  • Creates statewide campaign for acceptance, inclusion, tolerance and understanding of diversity. 
  • Requires notice to districts prior to tax assessment challenge filing the might result in reduced PILOT payment. 
  • Allows school districts to keep rescue inhalers for emergency treatment.  
  • Requires same-day notification of a parent that certain behavioral interventions were used for a student with a disability. (LHEC recommends expanding to cover all students.)  
  • Notifies districts of proposed IDA financial incentives for new projects. 
  • Requires IDAs to notify districts within 2 years of PILOT agreement expiration or immediately upon early termination. 
  • Allows TRS retirees to return to work with a benefit recalculation after two years of additional service. 
  • Allows Special Act district interim tuition rates to include approved annual growth. 
  • Removes small city school districts from those not permitted to contract indebtedness.  


LHEC has concerns regarding legislation that:  

  • Prohibits construction of new schools near a major roadway. (LHEC seeks clarification on renovation or expansion of schools currently near a major roadway.) 
  • Allows districts to continue services for 21-year-old special needs students until age 23. (LHEC is concerned about lack of availability of transition services for students.) 
  • Authorizes districts to provide a property tax exemption to volunteer firefighters and ambulance workers. (LHEC is concerned that – similar to the veterans’ exemption – Boards of Education will have to determine who pays more or less property taxes.) 
  • Directs districts to consider installing panic alarm systems and stating such in public safety plans. (LHEC recommends that NYS fund the installation and maintenance of panic alarm systems in all NY school buildings.) 


LHEC has not yet taken a position on legislation that: 


  • Requires NYSED to survey districts and each superintendent to attest to provision of Holocaust instruction at all grade levels. 
  • Ensures disclosure of compensation range to all job applicants. 
  • Establishes a dyslexia and dysgraphia task force. 
  • Creates council to promote and set goals for purchases of locally grown food. 
  • Allows courts to override election protocols if there is evidence of disenfranchisement of minority groups, without changing the timing of school board elections due to the need for a budget vote in May. 
  • Requires districts with contracted food services to publish ingredient lists and nutritional information online. 
  • Establishes a task force to identify evidence-based and evidence informed solutions to reduce children's exposure to adverse childhood experience. 
  • Extends use of school psychologist in preschool evaluations until June 2024. 
  • Excludes lottery winnings in combined wealth ratio calculation if above 25% of district’s adjusted gross income. 
  • Authorizes coaches to serve who cannot be CPR certified as long as a CPR certified staff member is present. 
  • Extends four hour leave to receive COVID vaccination until end of 2023. 
  • Allows school-based health centers to remain out of Medicaid permanently. 


Legislation of interest that did not pass both houses: 


  • Enacts a Regional Cost Index for the Lower Hudson Valley.  
  • Authorizes Rockland County school districts the option of a referendum to create election wards. 




The LHEC Steering Committee 

The LHEC Steering Committee
Chair: Kelly Lappan, - DCSBA
Rina Beder - WPSBA
Kris Felicello - LHCSS
Kim Fontana - LHCSS
Rita Golden - WPSBA
Sandi Jeanette - RCSBA
Scott Levy - WPSBA
Joseph Ricca - LHCSS
Ray Sanchez - LHCSS
LHEC Administrator: Karen Belanger