Proposed Budget Highlights
The governor’s first budget submission reflects his administration’s priorities of ending child poverty, providing a world-class education for every child in Maryland, building a competitive economy, promoting environmental stewardship, and rebuilding state government.
- Record funding for K-12 education, investing $8.8 billion in public schools. Per pupil funding increases nine percent from $9,199 to $10,015.
- Allocates $500 million in surplus general fund cash as a contribution to the Blueprint for Maryland’s Future Fund. The Blueprint legislation was enacted in 2021 and includes comprehensive changes to nearly every aspect of the state’s public education system.
- Provides $15 million for a new teacher recruitment incentive program to address chronic staffing shortages in schools and $22 million for bonuses for non-certificated education support professionals.
- Expands access to early childhood education programs, including $99.6 million to support full-day pre-K for low-income 4-year-olds and 3-year-olds.
- Includes $10 million in additional state funding for the Child Care Scholarship Program for a total of $68.5 million in general fund support.
Building a Competitive Economy
- Includes $413 million ($218 million general fund) to fund adjustments to state service providers to help them accommodate the acceleration of the minimum wage to $15/hour.
- Invests $500 million in general funds to support investments in strategic transportation projects, with a goal of leveraging this funding with matching federal support.
- Provides $34 million for the More Jobs for Marylanders tax credit program, expected to create over 2,600 jobs and enroll over 30 projects.
- Includes approximately $5 million for the Apprenticeship Training Program and an additional $1 million to establish the Career Pathways for Healthcare Workers Program.
- Includes more than $2.4 billion for state-operated institutions of higher education, which represents annual growth of $286 million or 13 percent.
- Provides record funding of $112 million for the state’s largest need-based student aid program, projected to serve more than 30,000 students in fiscal 2024.
- Increases funding for the state’s 15 local community colleges by $38.2 million, or 18.5 percent per student.
- Includes more than $14.7 billion in total funds for the state’s Medicaid program with an increase in general funds of $287 million. The budget assumes fiscal 2024 enrollment remains nearly 12 percent above pre-pandemic levels.
- Provides an additional $51 million to expand services and reduce the waiting list for community services for developmentally disabled Marylanders.
- Allocates more than $616 million to fund provider rate increases in the fields of behavioral health, developmental disabilities, Medicaid, and other healthcare services (including $413 million for minimum wage increase).
- Provides record funding for mental health and substance abuse programs, with almost $1.4 billion in direct state support.
- Provides $122 million in aid to local police departments.
- Includes nearly $69 million in direct local law enforcement grants.
- Allocates $35 million in general funds for Victims of Crime Act funding to provide victim services.
- Invests $8.6 million over two fiscal years for parole and probation agents salary enhancements to help recruit and retain staff plus $17.8 million for retention incentive bonuses for agents and correctional officers.
- Provides $3.6 million for step increases and bonuses for resident advisors within the Department of Juvenile Services to support recruitment and retention.
- Includes $1 million to convert an existing depopulated correctional facility into a geriatric care facility.
Environment and Natural Resources
- Provides $103.4 million for renewable energy programs, an increase of 15 percent, and $51.6 million for energy efficiency grants, an increase of 44 percent.
- Includes $1.7 million and 24 new Water Supply positions to increase enforcement of drinking water standards.
- Provides $106.9 million for critical maintenance and other improvements at state parks.
Rebuilding State Government
- Establishes a new cabinet-level agency, the Department of Service and Civic Innovation, to provide service opportunities to Marylanders.
- Invests to strengthen the state workforce including:
- Salary increases for most state employees will reach 18 percent over the period of January 2022 through July 2023 by a combination of cost-of-living adjustments and step increases.
- An additional $39.4 million in salary adjustments for several difficult to fill positions like registered nurses, attorneys, emergency response technicians and certain educator positions.
- The budget over two fiscal years includes $1.3 billion for employee salary and benefit enhancements ($875 million in general funds).
- Assumes state agency vacancy rates will be reduced by about half to 6 percent overall in fiscal 2024 and includes an additional 589 positions, including 143 contractual conversions.