Committee passes Sen. Miramant bill to require Maine fund 55% of school costs

Thu, 04/22/2021 - 8:45pm

AUGUSTA — The Legislature’s Education and Cultural Affairs Committee approved a bill sponsored by Senator Dave Miramant, D-Camden, that would require the state to fund a mandatory 55 percent of public school costs for the fiscal year 2021-2022.

LD 1114, “An Act To Require the State To Meet the Mandatory 55 Percent Contribution to Schools,” passed in committee by a vote of 7-3.

“I have heard it dozens of times: Mainers don’t want their property taxes raised because the state won’t keep up its end of the bargain,” said. Sen. Miramant. “The fact is that Maine voters passed the 55 percent contribution years ago. I’d say it’s time we came through on that commitment. I am thankful for the committee for voting in favor of this measure.”

LD 1114 would make sure the state share of funding essential programs and services of public school is 55 percent.

In 2003, Maine voters passed a citizen referendum that required the state to pay for 55 percent of the costs of operating public schools in order to reduce property taxes. Since then, the state has never met that requirement, Sen. Miramant noted. 

LD 1114 now faces votes in the Senate and the House.