Charter School Bill Stalled Again on Beacon Hill
A home rule petition from New Bedford, where city officials have agreed to an innovative charter school expansion plan, continued to face rough treatment on Beacon Hill Thursday.
Opponents of the bill, which would transfer the Kempton School property to the Alma Del Mar charter school for its new campus, have used procedural maneuvers over the past week to prevent it from even being assigned to a committee for a public hearing.
Sen. Patricia Jehlen of Somerville joined the movement, using a procedural motion Thursday to block the bill from being assigned to the Education Committee. The type of motion Jehlen made is not debatable and under Senate rules automatically postpones further consideration of the matter and places it on the calendar for the next formal session, which could be as late as next Thursday.
The bill now has no chance of passing by Friday's deadline, set by state Education Commissioner Jeff Riley.
The backup plan calls for an even larger charter school expansion in New Bedford that the plan called for under the home rule petition.
The hardball tactics to prevent a bill from being assigned to a committee, especially a home rule petition, have raised eyebrows within the Legislature where lawmakers are accustomed to seeing their bills sent to committees without incident.