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Board of Education Adopts Requested FY 2024 Operating and Capital Budgets, and FY 2025-29 Capital Improvement Program

February 16th, 2023

The Howard County Board of Education unanimously adopted its Operating and Capital Budget Requests for the 2023-2024 school year (Fiscal Year 2024) during its meeting on Feb. 16, 2023.

Operating Budget

The FY 2024 Board of Education Requested Operating Budget totals $1.142 billion, which is a $109.5 million, or 10.6% increase over the FY 2023 Operating Budget. The Board’s request reflects the school system’s funding needs to continue implementing Maryland’s Blueprint for the Future and prioritizes the most urgent needs of its students and families by taking a measured and strategic approach to provide the resources required for student achievement.

The request for County revenue funding totals $786.1 million, which is $110.5 million, or 16.4% over FY 2023. State revenues in the budget total $348.4 million, an increase of $27.3 million, or 8.5%. Costs for compensation increases account for approximately 44% of the $109.5 million growth in expenditures. The remaining expenditure growth is being driven by the strategic vision that every student achieves when their instructional needs are met guided by the Blueprint for Maryland’s Future legislation and other mandates, the opening of Guilford Park High School, staffing for special education, and funding for staff and resources critical to our school system’s operations.

“It is essential that the Board prioritizes the needs of our students and families as part of our budget request to the County,” said Antonia Watts, Chair of the Board of Education. “I commend my fellow Board members, Superintendent Dr. Martirano and school system staff for their comprehensive efforts to craft a budget proposal that is based on our greatest needs to meet legal mandates and to ensure every student achieves.”

“There is no disputing that the growing requirements of the State’s Blueprint legislation, increasing special education services, costs associated with opening the new high school, and the continued requirement to maintain a highly qualified and diverse workforce during the ongoing teacher and staff shortage must all be addressed during this budget cycle. This budget does not represent all the needs of the district, but those that have been deemed priorities by the Board. The Board looks forward to continued collaboration with the County Executive and members of the County Council as well to address the needs of our school system.”

The Board’s adopted budget request keeps the Superintendent’s proposed FY 2024 operating budget intact while adding a number of priorities identified by the Board, including:

Additionally, the Board moved to repurpose the proposed Board Attorney position for contractual budget analysis services.

Capital Budget

The Board also adopted the FY 2024 Capital Budget totaling $67.7 million, for costs associated with the completion of Guilford Park High School; renovations/additions to Oakland Mills Middle School and Dunloggin Middle School; renovations to the Faulkner Ridge Center; new Elementary School #43, systemic renovations of boilers and other equipment; and ongoing projects such as planning and design to address system needs.

Along with the FY 2024 Capital Budget, the Board adopted the FY 2025-2029 Capital Improvement Program Request in the amount of $477.8 million, and the FY 2024-2033 Long-Range Master Plan totaling $1.008 billion.

Next Steps

The Board of Education’s budget will be submitted to the County Executive during the week of Feb. 27, as required by law. The County Executive will hold public hearings followed by the submission of his proposed budget to the County Council. The County Council will then hold a series of public hearings and work sessions before final adoption of the county budget. Following Council action, the Board of Education will make any necessary adjustments to account for revenue impacts and adopt the final FY 2024 Operating and Capital Budgets.

Additional information about the HCPSS budget is available online.