House passes bill to halt drop in state education money
The House's action sends the bill to Gov. Maggie Hassan's desk.
The bill provides the same amount of state aid to all New Hampshire school districts this fiscal year as they received the past two years, something the 2011 law did not intend.
Without the fix, some cities and towns would see property taxes go up.
The problem arose when the Department of Education erroneously told communities they would receive the same state aid as they did in fiscal 2012 and 2011.
Communities were given stabilization grants beginning in 2012 to ensure they received the same amount of state aid as they did in 2011. While the stabilization grants are to remain the same in the future, the balance of state aid to each community would go up or down beginning this year, depending on a number of factors including enrollment and the statewide property tax rate.
When the error was discovered and state aid adjusted, 77 communities saw their state aid drop by a total of $3.42 million.
School districts approved their school budgets for this school year in the spring of 2012 based on the assumption state aid would be the same as the year before.
Without the adjustments, Nashua would receive $342,606 less in state aid; Lebanon, $316,175 less; Londonderry, $307,286 less; Manchester, $193,223 less; Keene, $167,660 less; Newfound Area School District towns $137,755 less; Raymond $135,591 less; and Greenland, $116,858 less.
The remaining 69 school districts would receive lesser amounts of state aid without the adjustment.
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