Conference committee approves moving school board elections to fall of even-numbered years

By Kansas Association of School Boards
March 31, 2015

A House-Senate conference committee on Tuesday approved a proposal to move school board and city elections to August and November of even-numbered years; the same time as state and federal elections.

The committee report may be composed later today and teed up for consideration by the full House and Senate as quickly as Wednesday.

KASB, which opposes moving the elections, is urging school officials to contact their legislators to urge them to vote against this bill. KASB anticipates close votes on this issue in both chambers. The vote will be on the conference committee report for HB 2104, which now contains the change in local elections originally in SB 171.

KASB believes that moving the races to the fall will confuse voters and increase partisanship in the administration of public schools. Currently, the elections are held in the spring of odd-numbered years.

The conference committee report is contained in House Bill 2104 would:

Move school board and city elections to the fall of even-numbered years;

Place local races at the top of the ballot;

Require school officials to provide a building for voting if contacted by the county election official before Jan. 1.

The conference committee does NOT include restrictions on when elections involving tax increases could be held, which was contained in the Senate version of the bill.

The conference committee report also includes:

Senate-approved versions of Senate Bill 239, which repeals the presidential primary, and House Bill 2104, which deals with filling vacancies of nominees after the primary.