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The Massachusetts Board of Elementary and Secondary Education

Governor's Fiscal Year 2014 Budget Recommendations

To:
Members of the Board of Elementary and Secondary Education
From:
Mitchell D. Chester, Ed.D., Commissioner
Date:
January 23, 2013

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The Governor released his Fiscal Year 2014 (FY14) Budget recommendations to the Legislature today. The FY14 budgetary spending recommendations across all of state government total $32.825 billion (or $36.455 B after including the annual pension contribution); a 6.93% increase from FY 2013 estimated spending. The budget is predicated on the adoption of a substantial new revenue package.

The two primary investments that the Governor has recommended in the FY14 budget are in education and transportation. In his State of the Commonwealth Address, the Governor asserted that along with innovation, investment in education and transportation are the cornerstones of a healthy future for Massachusetts and its citizens. The goal of closing the education achievement gap and preparing all of Massachusetts' students for the jobs of tomorrow is prominent in the Governor's budget.

The Governor's FY14 total budget recommendation for the Department of $4.955 billion represents an increase of $252.8 million above the $4.702 billion FY13 budget. The Governor's budget is highly responsive to the priorities identified by the Board. Among the highlights of the budget proposal are:

Continued Financial Support for Local Districts

  • The Governor has recommended $4.397 billion for Chapter 70 state aid (7061-0008), representing an increase of $226 million over FY13. The investment of $226 M in new funding ensures that no district receives state funding of less than 17.5% of foundation; allows for reimbursement for the education of four-year-olds; increases the assumed cost for educating students with disabilities out-of-district; and ensures each district an increase of at least $25 per pupil. This would be a new high-water mark for Chapter 70 funding.

  • Special Education Circuit Breaker (7061-0012) is level funded at $230.5 million.

  • FY14 funding for Regional School Transportation Costs (7035-0006) is level funded at $44.5 million.

  • FY14 funding for Transportation Reimbursement for Homeless Children (7035-0005) is level funded at $6.05 million.

Increased Assistance for District and School Turnaround

  • The Governor has recommended that the Targeted Assistance to Schools and Districts (7061-9408) funding be increased by $2.1 million from the FY13 amount of $7.6 million. This increase is a priority area for the Board.

  • The Office of School and District Accountability (7061-0029) is receiving an increase of $2 million over the FY13 amount of $955,541. This increase is a priority of the Board.

Professional Development for English Language Learners Instruction

  • The Governor's budget fully funds the Department's Year 2 need for the RETELL initiative (7072-1004). This funding level will allow the Department to continue its training and professional development work with educators of ELL students.

ESE Resources for Program Delivery

  • The Governor's budget language does not reflect funding restrictions for personnel from the program accounts identified by the Board. ESE will continue to advance its needs with the Governor's staff and the Legislature during the FY14 budget development cycle.

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

  • The Governor has recommended the consolidation of the Bay State Reading Institute into the Consolidated Literacy Program (7010-0033). Adjusting for the account consolidation, the consolidated account is funded $275,000 above the FY13 level.

  • The Governor recommends an increase of $4.9 million in the Expanded Learning Time Grants (7030-9412) over the FY13 amount of $14.2 million.

  • The Governor continues his support for the higher funding level in Adult Basic Education (7035-0002). The program is funded at $35.2 million for FY14, a recommended increase of $5 million.

  • The Governor has recommended an increase of $9.8 M in Charter School Tuition Reimbursements (7061-9010). This increased level is designed to reflect the level of funding required to fund the FY13 tuition costs at a 100% level.

  • The Governor has recommended a new ESE appropriation for an Innovation School competitive grant program. The account (7061-9011) is funded at $1.465 million.

The balance of the Department's accounts is either level funded at current appropriation levels, have small increases included to cover traditional program maintenance costs, or have small decreases due to the impact of FY13 9C budget reductions.

The attached chart compares the Governor's FY14 budget recommendations to projected FY13 spending and identifies any variances.

The Governor's Fiscal Year 2014 budget recommendations start the FY14 budget development process that will culminate in late June when the Legislature approves the FY14 budget and forwards it to the Governor for his final review and approval.

Please let me know if you have any questions or concerns.

Attachment

Download Excel Document
Governor's FY14 Budget Recommendations Analysis

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Last Updated: January 25, 2013
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