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Eye on Annapolis

The Daily Record's Maryland state government blog

Lawmakers call Hogan’s criticism of city schools ‘insulting’

William Ferguson

Maryland State Sen. William “Bill” Ferguson (The Daily Record/Bryan P. Sears)

Two legislators took to social media to offer angry reactions to Gov. Larry Hogan’s criticisms of the Baltimore City Schools system, including a $129 million budget deficit.

Sen. William “Bill” Ferguson and Del. Brooke Lierman, both city Democrats, fired back at Hogan calling his comments made during an interview on The Derek Hunter radio show on WBAL insulting.

During that interview, Hogan called the school system “an absolute disaster” and criticized the system for mismanaging its funds at the same time it is seeing decreases in state aid due to a funding formula he blamed on the legislature.

“Governor @LarryHogan, your cavalier insults are disrespectful to my son and the thousands of other children in our City Schools,” Ferguson wrote on his Twitter account Tuesday night.

Lierman echoed those comments Wednesday morning.

“This is insulting and another  #alternativefact –  happy to show you how lean BCPS HQs is & why the formula is the problem, not City Schools,” Lierman wrote in her post.

Baltimore City Schools, with its $1.2 billion budget, is facing a $129 million budget gap. That’s about twice the $60 million gap reported last year, according to The Baltimore Sun.

The state provides nearly 70 percent of the school system’s funding.

10a-parole-hogan-larry-interview075mfThe gap has been attributed to declines in state aid due to a funding formula that reduces state contributions as student enrollment declines or a jurisdiction’s property tax base increases. Baltimore City has been affected by both over the last two years.

“What they’re saying is the difference between what they wanted to get and what the legislative formula says they get is a gap,” Hogan said on The Derek Hunter Show Tuesday. “They’re trying to blame it somehow on saying the governor cut funding. It’s absolutely fully funded every single penny that was supposed to go to Baltimore city and every other jurisdiction in the state and it’s record funding. So there is no $130 million cut to anything. It’s simply a gap between what they’d love to have and and what the legislature says they’re supposed to get.”

“The Baltimore City School system is an absolute disaster,” Hogan said. “We have some very hard working teachers and we have some good schools and I think every child in Maryland deserves a world-class education but remember it was something like $87 million that they lost that they couldn’t find, It was overtime they don’t know where it went. There’s just no fiscal accountability. We want to help the city in every way we can but we’re not just going to write blank checks while they lose the money.”


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One comment


    Bill Ferguson didn’t notice how bad the Baltimore City School System is because it’s horrible for Black students. No books and 40 students to 1 teacher. Maybe he didn’t notice because the students that are suffering are Black.