As you likely know by now, the biennial budget was enacted on July 4, 2017, and included finalized funding levels for 2017-18 State school subsidies (Public Law 2017 Ch. 284 Part C). While the Department appreciates that school districts and local governments are eager for updated funding projections for each district, it is important to note that this legislation includes a number of statutory changes to the formula that will take time to incorporate into the ED279 computer system. The estimated date that new ED279s subsidy printouts will be available is no later than July 21. As soon as these are available, a statement will be issued when the printouts have been posted to ED279 website at http://www.maine.gov/doe/eps/
The Department’s School Finance staff is working as quickly as possible, however they will need time to perform the necessary quality control steps to ensure that the amount for each school administrative unit is accurate.
It has come to our attention that other organizations have attempted to predict the amount of increase for each SAU. We caution you that these may not be accurate as they likely do not account for the formula changes that were enacted in Ch. 284. Only department issued amounts, which will be available on the ED279s when they are ready, should be used for budgeting purposes.
Also, please be aware that there is language in Ch. 284 Part JJJJJJJ of the enacted budget bill regarding the local action on any increase in their State subsidy and the use of the increased funds relating to requirements for reduction in local contribution and limitations on use of funds for increased expenditures. Please note that this section applies for both fiscal years 2017-18 and 2018-19 and may be found on page 817 of the budget bill, at the link below.
PL 2017 Ch. 284: http://legislature.maine.gov/ros/LawsOfMaine/breeze/Law/getDocById/?docId=57293
Please be assured that the Department is acutely aware of the need for updated information as soon as possible, and appreciates the difficulty that the delayed enactment of the state’s biennial budget has created on the local budgeting process for schools and municipalities. Our staff is committed to working as quickly as possible to provide you with the accurate information you need to finalize your budget. Thank you for your patience during this time.