Upcoming hearing for final ESA regulations

Hello Friends,

Just a quick reminder: Next week Nevada treasurer Dan Schwartz will hold his office’s next hearing on proposed regulations for the Education Savings Account (ESA) program.

The hearing will take place Tuesday, October 20 at 10 a.m. in room 4100 at the Legislative Building, located at 401 Carson Street in Carson City. The meeting will also be video-conferenced to room 4401 in the Grant Sawyer building at 555 Washington Ave, Las Vegas.

It is important to voice your concerns and support for the proposed regulations during public comment or through written comments to the Treasurer. This is the last scheduled opportunity for the office to consider your input and modify the proposed regulations. The Treasurer asks that any glaring concerns be submitted to his office as soon as possible so any issues can be researched before next week’s meeting.

There’s no doubt that the Treasurer is well aware of parents’ opposition to the 100 school-day enrollment requirement — previous hearings have made that clear. And there’s no doubt Treasurer Schwartz supports waiving the requirement. Unfortunately, the reality of this issue is that waiving this requirement is not within the Treasurer’s scope of authority. It will take an act of the legislature to remove the 100 school-day enrollment mandate. When it comes time for that, I will be sure to let you know.

Currently, the Treasurer’s office is reviewing avenues to exempt active military from the enrollment mandate. An answer is anticipated by the October 20th hearing. I know Treasurer Schwartz and his staff all favor a military exemption and are working proactively for military families. However, ultimately the determining factors lie within the Treasurer’s particular scope of authority and the legislative record.

The other hot topic of the day, eligibility of Kindergarteners and other children under age 7, is still being worked on. I’m assured there will be clarity on this issue soon.

Tuesday’s hearing is a “hearing to adopt,” after which the regulations will go to the Legislative Commission for final approval. Then, once again, it will be time to pack the house.

Over the past few weeks, I’ve received several inquiries asking how a parent will know that an application has actually been received by the Treasurer. If you submitted an application through the new interactive online form, you should receive an email response giving you a case number. This lets you know your application has been received, but it does not guarantee that you have accurately completed the form. Be sure to upload all necessary documents with your application and include your email address.

If you submitted an application through US mail or through the PDF format that the Treasurer’s office initially offered, you are probably still waiting for a notice of receipt. Please, be patient with the process.

The office’s staffers are diligently working to get applications processed and the whole program up and running. Not only do they have to work on the regulations, draft vendor forms, answer phone calls and return emails, but staff also must manually input more than 2,200 applications and back up materials into the database.

Once all the applications are input, the notices will go out to applicants. Again, be sure to include all necessary documents and your email address. Applications in Spanish can be found here.

Speaking of vendor forms, the Treasurer’s office confirmed those forms are in development and will be out soon. So, all you schools and tutors out there, get ready!

As always, feel free to contact me with any questions.

Have a wonderful weekend!