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Legislature voting on school funding, COVID-19 response
Legislature voting on school funding, COVID-19 response
Angela Audette
Tuesday, March 17, 2020

The governor’s supplemental budget including the General Purpose Aid reflected in the spreadsheets (ED 279s) sent out to districts in late January is making its way through the Legislature today after receiving unanimous, bipartisan support from the Appropriations Committee Monday evening.

The proposal brings the increase in GPA for schools next year to $63 million -- $26 million included in the biennial budget and $37 million in the supplemental currently being voted on in Augusta.

Separate legislation dealing with the disruption caused by the Coronavirus on schools and other government entities and the establishment of a COVID-19 response fund also will be voted on today. Updates will be provided.

The boost in GPA, which is being voted on today to assure it will be available July 1, raises the state share to 51.8 percent and includes an additional $4 million for pre-kindergarten programs; restoration of system administration funds; and, an increase in subsidy for minimum receivers from 45 to 50 percent of special education costs.

There also is one-time funding of $3 million for CTE equipment upgrades.

When the Legislature ends its session today it will leave Augusta with no date certain to return because of the unknowns around the Coronavirus.