Governor Janet Mills today released a state budget plan that increases General Purpose Aid to schools by $187 million, bringing state share of the cost of education to 55 percent – a demand approved by voters 15 years ago that was never fulfilled until today.
The governor’s proposal, if approved by the Legislature, would not only make good on the 55 percent obligation, it would provide resources for cash-strapped schools and hold down local property taxes.
“Because of our prudent fiscal management during the pandemic and federal support, we have a healthy revenue forecast for this biennium. As a result, we can not only fully fund education for the first time in our history, but we can give money back to the taxpayers through revenue sharing, tax fairness credits for property taxpayers, and income tax relief for low-income and middle-class families,” Governor Mills said. “This budget proposal focuses on improving the lives and livelihoods of Maine people and on strengthening our state for years to come.”
Education Commissioner Pender Makin applauded the governor’s action on behalf of Maine’s school children. “Immediately upon taking office, Governor Mills made Maine's public education system a top priority, investing in a minimum teacher salary of $40,000, increasing the State's contribution to offset local education costs, and allocating millions of dollars to local schools for pandemic response,” she said.
“Today, at a time when the value of local public education has never been more clear, we move to a bold and unprecedented commitment of funding as Governor Mills aims to become the first and only leader to achieve Maine's long-sought goal of 55 percent.”
To read the governor’s entire press announcement, click here: https://content.govdelivery.co...