One of the biggest differences in the successful budget passed by the Legislature, compared to Gov. Paul LePage’s original budget proposal, is the inclusion of a provision to incrementally increase state funding for public education to a target of 55 percent. It’s estimated that increasing the state’s share by 1 percent per year will cost about $20 million annually and take eight to 10 years. Below are some additional differences between the governor’s proposal and Legislature’s final budget.

Governor’s budget

Jobs for Maine’s Graduates: $5.29 million

Bridge Year Program: $2 million

Proficiency based diploma transition: $4 million

Educator effectiveness plan phase-in: $5 million

School improvement grants: $3 million

Direct public school funding: $844 million

Net funding after districts pay teacher pensions: $815 million

Legislature’s budget

Jobs for Maine’s Graduates: $4.69 million

Bridge Year Program: $500,000

Proficiency based diploma transition: $4 million

Educator effectiveness plan phase-in: $0

School improvement grants: $0

Direct public school funding: $870 million

Net funding after districts pay teacher pensions: $844 million

Source: Maine Department of Education

Erin Rhoda

Erin Rhoda is the editor of Maine Focus, a team that conducts journalism investigations and projects at the Bangor Daily News. She also writes for the newspaper, often centering her work on issues of sexual...