Kirwan Blueprint Fix-Up Bill – A Final Fiscal Note

The final fiscal and policy note on HB 1372, this year’s legislation to modify and adjust the Kirwan Blueprint education plan, has been released – including a set of figures for each county’s “Maintenance of Effort” for FY 2022.

Each bill introduced in the General Assembly receives a Fiscal and Policy Note, prepared by the nonpartisan legislative staff, to summarize the bill’s effects and fiscal matters. When legislation changes through the legislative process, the “fiscal note” is frequently revised and updated to reflect those changes. Few fiscal notes have been as eagerly anticipated as the revised note for HB 1372, this year’s legislation to adjust multiple facets of the Kirwan Blueprint education plan. The final fiscal note on that bill, reflecting the “Enrolled Bill” as sent to the Governor (and enacted by a veto override).

Read more on the Kirwan “Fix-up” Bill from the 2021 session, from Conduit Street‘s earlier coverage: Kirwan “Blueprint 2.0” Follow-up Bill Passed, Sent on to Governor

From the fiscal note, here is an exhibit showing each county’s calculations for FY 2022 “Maintenance of Effort” state-required school funding, along with estimates for the requirement based on enrollment projections for FY 2023:

For some counties, the bill’s adjustment to effectively “skip” the September 2020 enrollment counts for all funding calculation purposes has left the year-to-year of per-pupil funding. The 2020 Kirwan legislation created (among many other things) a three-year average enrollment component to use, if that number is higher than the current year’s enrollment. This was introduced to blunt the effect of declining enrollment. The overlapping effect of the newly-introduced three-year average alongside the special provisions to “skip” the September 2020 count have yielded results.

Each school system and county should have received a detailed calculation, applying these calculations to their own enrollment and funding levels, to set the MOE certification amount for FY 2022.

Michael Sanderson

Executive Director Maryland Association of Counties