Malloy Zeroes Out Education Funding for Half of Connecticut’s Towns and CitiesAugust 21, 2017
The governor made major changes to the Education Cost Sharing grants that towns and cities in Connecticut have come to expect from the state each year.
Gov. Dan Malloy (D-Conn.) issued a major executive order on Friday that is sure to see challenges from towns and cities across the state. Malloy, acting in his capacity to keep state government open without a budget for fiscal year (FY) 2018, zeroed out education funding from the state for 85 of Connecticut’s towns.
Malloy’s press release touted “restoration” of funds, “holding harmless” funding for certain school districts, and “other adjustments … to ensure that the state lives within its limited means.”
Governor Dannel P. Malloy today announced revisions to the Executive Order Resource Allocation Plan, along with new municipal aid distributions associated with the plan. The changes accommodate the restoration of $40 million to private, nonprofit health and human service providers, prioritizing education funding to communities with the highest student needs by holding harmless the 30 Alliance Districts, and $60 million of other adjustments that must be made to ensure that the state lives within its limited means under the executive order.
What Malloy didn’t tout was his plan to zero out Education Cost Sharing grants to more than half (85) of Connecticut’s 169 towns and cities (full list below).
Funding for cities like Bridgeport ($181 million), Hartford ($200 million), and New Haven ($154 million) stayed the same as fiscal year (FY) 2017.
Senate Republican President Pro Tempore Len Fasano (R-North Haven) blasted Malloy’s order on Friday afternoon, saying Malloy “mistakes the governorship for a dictatorship.”
The governor’s executive order shows that he mistakes the governorship for a dictatorship. His order flies in the face of the recent Superior Court ruling on education funding and violates state law. Our state is in a devastating situation today because the governor has driven our state down a road full of potholes for the past six years. Now that the state is broke, instead of uniting our state to pursue serious structural changes, he is threatening a unilateral decision that violates the judge’s orders to bring fairness to education funding and is outright illegal. It will also guarantee massive property tax increases.
Fasano upped the ante on Monday morning, requesting Attorney General George Jepsen’s (D-Conn.) opinion on whether some of the changes Malloy made – including “[u]nilaterally reducing Excess Cost grants for state aid for special education,” and “[u]sing an executive order to adjust the motor vehicle mill rate tax cap” – are legal.
Either way, this drastic change from Malloy favors cities, at the cost to many towns and small communities who are now left facing either steep cuts to education funding or a property tax hike to pay for education.
Is your town or city affected? Here’s the list of towns that will receive $0 in Education Cost Sharing grants in FY 2018, according to Malloy’s revised executive order:
- Beacon Falls
- Deep River
- East Granby
- East Lyme
- New Canaan
- New Fairfield
- New Hartford
- North Haven
- Old Lyme
- Old Saybrook
- Rocky Hill
- South Windsor
- West Hartford
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