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The Massachusetts Board of Elementary and Secondary Education

To:
Members of the Board of Elementary and Secondary Education
From:
Mitchell D. Chester, Ed.D., Commissioner
Date:
April 11, 2012

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House Committee on Ways and Means Fiscal Year 2013 Budget Recommendations

The House Committee on Ways and Means (HWM) released its Fiscal Year 2013 (FY13) Budget Recommendations today. The FY13 budgetary spending recommendations total $32.3 billion or 2.98% growth from FY12 estimated spending. The HWM budget recommendation places particular emphasis on increasing local education aid while supporting some of the Board's priorities.

The HWM FY13 total budget recommendation for the Department of $4.675 billion represents an increase of $185.0 million above the FY12 estimated departmental spending of $4.487 billion and an increase of $27.8 million above the Governor's (House 2) FY13 budget of $4.647 billion.

The HWM provided increases consistent with several budget priorities identified by the Board.

Continued Financial Support for Local Districts

  • HWM has recommended $4.154 billion for Chapter 70 state aid (7061-0008), representing an increase of $163.8 million over FY12.
  • FY13 funding for the Special Education Circuit Breaker (7061-0012) is at $221.6 million, maintaining the $8.5 million increase over FY12.
  • FY13 funding for Regional School Transportation Costs (7035-0006) is at $45.4 million, an increase of 1.9 million over FY12.
  • New funding for Transportation for Homeless Children (7035-0005) has been proposed at $11.3 million.
  • Transportation of Non-Resident Students (7035-0007) on the other hand was reduced to $200,000 from its FY12 level of $400,000.

Increased Assistance for District and School Turnaround

  • HWM recommended that the Targeted Assistance to Schools and Districts (7061-9408) funding be increased by $910,000 from the FY12 amount of $6.7 million; this amount is $1.7 million below the Governor's FY13 House 2 recommendation of $9.3 million and $4.8M below the Board's recommendation of $12.4M.
  • The Office of School and District Accountability (7061-0029) was level funded at $949,000; this amount is $760,000 below the Governor's FY13 recommendation of $1.7M and $1.5M below the Board's recommendation of $2.4 million.

Professional Development for English Language Learners Instruction

  • HWM did not provide funding in the budget plan to fund this upcoming professional development commitment.

Literacy

  • HWM did not support the consolidation of the Bay State Reading Institute (7010-0020) into the Consolidated Literacy Program (7010-0033). The Consolidated Literacy Program is level funded at $3.147 million and Bay State Reading Institute is level funded at $400,000 in the HWM budget.

Personnel Restrictions and Administrative Resources in Program Accounts

  • The HWM budget language does not support the elimination of the funding restrictions for funding of personnel within the variety of program accounts identified by the Board.
  • HWM also did not include dedicated funding for Charter School Program Administration.
  • HWM did not support the $315,000 proposed in the Governor's House 2 budget to provide Education Collaborative oversight through the main administration account (7010-0005).

Support to Reduce Biased-Based Bullying

  • The HWM budget continues to support the Commission of Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender Youth at the FY12 level of $100,000 through an appropriation in the Administration and Finance budget (line 0950-0050).

In addition to the Board areas of priority, the HWM Committee included increases in a number of additional Department accounts.

  • HWM recommends an increase of $1.25 million in School-to-Work Connecting Activities (7027-0019) funding over the FY12 budget of $750,000; this funding level is about $770,000 less than the Governor's House 2 recommendation.
  • HWM recommends an increase of $2 million in the Kindergarten Grants (7030-1002) over the FY12 amount of $22.9 million, again $1 million less than the House 2 proposal.
  • HWM supports the Governor's recommendation for a new Massachusetts AP Math and Science Initiative line item (7035-0035), however it recommends this line be established at $1 million, rather than $2.4 million.
  • A new appropriation, Financial Literacy Grants (7061-0928) is funded at $250,000.

Funding for several appropriations were either reduced or eliminated as follows:

  • HWM recommends $29.2 million for Adult Basic Education (7035-0002). ABE FY12 funding was originally $27.7 million, supplemented by an additional $3 million, reaching a total of $30.7 million. The $29.2 million level in the HWM budget is $1.5 million less than the Governor's recommendation.
  • HWM recommends funding the Supports to Close the Achievement Gap (7061-9404) at $9.1 million, which is $480,000 less than its FY12 funding level and the House 2 FY13 recommendation.
  • HWM also reduced or eliminated several programs:

    • METCO (7010-0012) reduced by $1 million
    • Reserve for shortfall in Federal Impact Aid (7061-0033) eliminated by both HWM and the Governor's budget ($1.3 million in FY12).
    • Alternative Education (7061-9614) eliminated ($146,000 in FY12).
    • YouthBuild (7061-9626) reduced by $300,000 from FY12 level of $1.3 million.
    • Regional Bonus Aid (7061-9810) eliminated ($300,000 in FY12).

  • Supplemental Food Assistance (7051-0015), which was funded at $1 million in FY12, has been consolidated into the Department of Agriculture's 2511-0105 appropriation, but remains level funded.

The balance of the Department's accounts is either level funded at current appropriation levels or have small increases included to cover anticipated salary adjustments.

The Download PDF Document  Download Excel Document attached chart compares the HWM FY13 budget recommendations to the Governor's (House 2) recommendations as well as the projected FY12 spending and identifies any variances.

Please let Bill Bell (781.338.6528) or me know if you have any questions or concerns.

C. Senior Staff
Managers



Last Updated: April 20, 2012
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