Lexington’s legislative delegation of Sen. Cindy Friedman, D-Arlington, Sen. Mike Barrett, D-Lexington, and Rep. Michelle Ciccolo, D-Lexington, announced that the Legislature and Baker administration have committed to providing a baseline amount of unrestricted local aid and Chapter 70 funding for fiscal year 2021.
This commitment will give municipalities and school districts a critical planning tool as they finalize their budgets.
Under the agreement, Lexington will receive $1,627,400 in local aid and $14,438,034 in Chapter 70 education funding. The town is additionally eligible for federal relief funding of $1,787,737.
“I’m pleased that the Senate, House and the administration have come to an agreement to provide much-need resources for our schools during this difficult time,” said Friedman. “Our students and teachers have faced unprecedented challenges since the outset of the COVID-19 pandemic, and this crucial funding will ensure that we can continue to provide a quality education to our students despite the profound adversity they have experienced this year.”
“This agreement comes at a time when towns are having to overcome new challenges seemingly every week,” said Barrett. “I’m glad we were able to provide a measure of certainty when so much is still up in the air.”
“In spite of the economic crisis we find ourselves in, the House’s top fiscal priority has been protecting Local Aid and Chapter 70,” said Ciccolo. “This funding provides vital, ongoing support that our schools and municipalities need in order to keep our cities and towns running while providing our students the highest quality education possible. Given the constraints on the state budget this year due to the ongoing pandemic, I was grateful the Legislature was able to provide these funds, giving our local communities clarity as they plan for FY21.”
The agreement provides for funding of unrestricted general government aid at no less than the amount provided in fiscal 2020. Cities and towns will also see an inflation and enrollment increase for Chapter 70 education funding. Additionally, the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education will distribute emergency resources appropriated by the federal government to help each school district meet the challenges brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic.