Executive Ball’s FY23 operating budget proposal contains largest increase for education in 20 years – Howard County Government

by | Apr 18, 2022 | Education

For the first time ever, funding for the Howard County Public School System exceeds $1 billion, containing the largest increase in at least two decades, significantly beyond the local funding level projected in the state Blueprint for Maryland’s Future. The FY23 budget proposal also fully funds special education staffing needs and requested support for educational and behavioral health needs. The proposed school system allocation of $1.026 billion contains an $84 million increase in State and County funding, with an overall increase of $68 million due to a reduction of school system reserve funding. The $40 million increase above the state required baseline investment known as Maintenance of Effort (MOE) is also the highest increase in at least two decades.

Over the past four years, nearly $58 million in County funding has been provided above MOE, more than triple the amount provided during the previous four-year period. Also over the past four years, instructional funding for the school system will have risen by over $61 million pending budget approval, more than double the prior four-year increase.

The total proposed FY23 Operating Budget of $2 billion represents an 8.2% increase from FY22. Excluding the use of $91.6 million in fund balance from prior surplus to support priority one-time initiatives, the FY23 General Fund budget increase is 7% over the FY22 budget.

The growth is primarily due to strong revenue performance, and the budget relies on no new tax increases.

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