ALBANY—The State Senate on Thursday passed a bill that would change the way the Board of Regents is selected, allowing most members to be appointed by the governor and giving more power to minority legislative conferences.
The bill, sponsored by Senate higher education committee chair Kenneth LaValle, addresses Republicans' complaints that Democrats, who control the Assembly, have too much control over appointments to the Board of Regents.
For that reason, it is not likely to be considered in the Assembly.
The bill would also give the governor power where he formally has none under current law. Amid recent controversy over the rollout of the Common Core standards in New York, Governor Andrew Cuomo has said recently that the board should be overhauled.
The bill came to the Senate floor two days after this year's Regents elections, in which three incumbents were reelected and a new Regent was appointed to fill a vacancy left by a last-minute resignation.
Under the bill, which passed the chamber 40-18, eight of the 17-member education policymaking board would be chosen by the governor, three by the Senate majority leader, and three by the Assembly speaker. One member would be chosen by each of the minority conferences in the Senate and the Assembly, and the final spot would be filled on a rotating basis by the governor, the Senate majority leader and the Assembly speaker.
This bill probably won't get passed into law.
But between the Regents bill and all the changes Cuomo is proposing for charter schools in his budget, we're seeing some very radical changes to the system being considered.
About the only thing standing in the way of the governor having control over the Regents and NYC charter co-locations and funding is Shelly Silver and the Assembly.
I wouldn't be willing to be too much that Shelly and the Assembly don't give Cuomo and the charter operators much of what they want in the end.