The Maryland Delegate House was a huge success with a $ 46.7 billion spending plan which strengthens funding for state public schools and some of Gov's favorite projects. Larry Hogan under construction.
The 124-14 budget was run without much debate, but attracted the attention of the top Republicans.
Del Maggie McIntosh, Citizen Democracy, who chairs the House Appropriation Committee, noted that the budget provides $ 320 million more to operate Maryland public schools. This is the first step towards implementing recommendations from the Kirwan Commission, which proposed ambitious new programs to strengthen student performance.
Before it passed, McIntosh urged her colleagues to “vote for one of the best budgets, unlike the best budget, which I never saw for Maryland children.”
The House's spending plan also includes $ 500 million for building public schools and $ 46 million more for bonuses for low-paid state employees not covered by a collective bargaining agreement.
“Who would we have if we didn't promote our operators?” McIntosh said. “Who would you do if we didn't fight for 15? Who would you do if we did not invest in every child in every ZIP code in this state? ”
But Republican leaders did not reflect on the changes to Hogan's recommendations.
House of Delegates Minority leader Nic Kipke from Anne Arundel County said he was concerned about the demise of the Democrats on chartered schools and funds to send children from poor families to private schools.
“I am concerned about how we are treating chartered schools in this budget,” said Kipke. “I am concerned about the cuts to the BOOST program. It is a critical tool for releasing children from failing schools. It gives them a chance to be successful. ”
The House budget phases out the Options Expansion and Student Opportunities program – known as BOOST – known as a limited number of scholarships for children from low income families to attend private schools.
In a statement after the passing of budget, Hogan tasted the democratic makers.
“The cuts set out in the budget that have been passed today – including over $ 16 million of cutbacks in funding that would contribute to school safety, would increase accountability, and provide better opportunities for our children. – the height of the wording and disability for our students, teachers, and parents, ”said the governor.
Democratic leaders have said that their main priority is to increase education funding by $ 1 billion over two years.
The legislation responds to an interim report from the Kirwan Commission, formally entitled the Commission for Innovation and Excellence in Education, but is known as the former University of Maryland, William “Brit” Kirwan.
He suggested a number of proposals to help schools in Maryland, including a full day management application that is free for low income 3-4 year old children; employ and retain high quality and diverse teachers; and increasing standards and services so that all students are ready for a college or career, paying particular attention to pupils in schools with high levels of poverty.
The Seanad must now provide a version of the budget before the end of the General Assembly session in April.
Sen. Nancy King, County Democracy Montgomery who chairs the Seanad Budget and Taxation Committee, said that her committee is supporting a spending plan with lower funds to implement the Kirwan Commission's recommendations than the House.
King said that the majority of his Seanad committee believe that it is more prudent to provide $ 225 million – rather than $ 320 million – for the first year of the public school funding plan.
“We need to do what we can,” said King. “We decided that it was a more responsible movement to go with the lowest.”
To pay for the full Kirwan Commission recommendations, “we will have to raise some income,” said King. “And I don't hear from my colleagues to raise taxes.”