SNOW HILL – County officials responded to news that Worcester County’s Maintenance of Effort calculation would be increasing with candid criticism.
During Tuesday’s meeting of the Worcester County Commissioners, Chief Administrative Officer Harold Higgins informed officials that Maintenance of Effort (MOE) funding would increase $2,387,012 in FY2018. The increase is tied to modifications made to MOE requirements made by the state in 2012 that are only just now having a financial impact.
“We’re just being penalized again because we’re supposedly a wealthy county,” Commissioner Jim Bunting said.
The state’s MOE law requires Maryland’s counties to provide the same level of funding, on a per pupil basis, that they did the prior year. With enrollment of 6,259 students, Worcester County appropriated $12,972 per student in FY 2017. The 2.4-percent increase mandated by the 2012 legislative change means the county’s MOE funding for the coming year will amount to $83,580,814 — roughly $2.4 million more than it was in FY2017.