“Half Harmless” Funding Bill Passing

Delegate Beitzel’s HB814 – Education – State Grant to Counties With Small and Declining Student Enrollment was moved favorable with amendments by the House Ways & Means Committee and the Senate crossfile was voted out of the full Senate.

The bill would hold “half” harmless counties whose direct education aid from the State is declining from 2015-2017.  The bill as amended states:

For fiscal years 2015 through 2017, if a county board’s total direct education aid in the current fiscal year is less that the prior fiscal year, then the state shall provide a grant to the county board equal to 50% of the decrease in the total direct education aid from the prior fiscal year to the current fiscal year.

According to Delegate Beitzel, the original bill was intended in particular to remedy issues created by decreases in education aid in Garrett and Kent counties.

For more information, see the bill page, view the testimony, or read the full bill text.

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