Maryland Counties Unite Against Teacher Pension Shift

As MACo continues its advocacy efforts to stop the teacher pension shift,  local governments are vocalizing the damaging effects the shift would have back home.

Allegany County Commissioner Bill Valentine wrote in a Cumberland Times-News letter to the editor:

In Allegany County alone, the new county cost for the coming year is $2,890,831. The fiscal staff in Annapolis says that would grow immediately to $3,729,301 the next year, and all the way to $4,354,820 over the next three years.
That kind if burden would put massive pressure onto the county’s taxpayers, and to the public services our citizens deserve and depend on. The state should resist the temptation to balance its budget on the backs of our counties.
We urge our senators and delegates to stand in opposition to these massive cost shifts.

Worcester County Commission President James C. “Bud” Church expressed how the transfer would effect the county’s already “bare” budget:

Declining revenues continue to be a challenge to absorb. If the state can’t afford teacher pensions, how does the governor think the county can afford it?

Since September 2008, the county has undergone a major restructuring that resulted in the elimination of 59 county positions through retirements and unfilled vacancies. With the county already operating at bare-bones levels, further reductions will have a drastic impact on the ability to maintain the level of service that Worcester County residents have come to expect.

Rather than reduce spending, the state continues to increase its budget, while systematically transferring greater funding responsibility to the counties. Consequently, county leaders are faced with making some very hard choices to develop a balanced FY 2013 budget.

Complete article available here.

MACo has adopted a firm and clear stance against the Governor’s proposed teacher pension shift.

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