Anti-Bullying Bill Dies Without Receiving Hearing in House (Again)

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A final attempt to hold a hearing on Senate Bill 1358, better known as the anti-bullying measure, died today.

When House Education Chairman Coeur d'Alene Republican Rep. Bob Nonini chose not to schedule a hearing on the bill, which previously passed through the Senate 25-8, Boise Democratic Rep. Brian Cronin moved to send the bill to the full House. But a Republican majority killed the effort, 48-21, though eight Republicans favored a floor vote.

"Today's action sends the unfortunate message to victims of bullies that they are on their own," said Cronin.

The Idaho School Boards Association opposed the measure, as written.

"That was one of the things that our school districts said to us over and over," Karen Echeverria, executive director of the ISBA told BW. "They say, 'This is not necessary legislation.'"

But the bill's sponsor, Boise Democratic Sen. Nicole LeFavour, begged to differ.

"The State Department of Education gets at least one call a week from parents who are concerned that their school isn't doing anything about the bullying that their child is experiencing," said LeFavour.

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