Gov. Larry Hogan Tuesday previewed his administration’s FY 2022 budget proposal which he said will prioritize tax relief for individuals and small businesses and include record investments in education, the environment and public safety.
Hogan declined to provide reporters with top-line numbers and said that that information will be made available tomorrow morning when the budget is formally presented to the General Assembly.
“Our top legislative priority is the Relief Act of 2021, which this budget reflects. It provides more than a billion dollars in immediate, targeted, emergency tax cuts and financial relief for Maryland families and small businesses who need it most-including immediate rebates to more than 400,000 low-income Marylanders who receive the Earned Income Tax Credit,” Hogan said at a news conference at the State House in Annapolis.
Hogan added: “It also permanently repeals the personal income tax on unemployment benefits and provides immediate sales tax cuts of up to $12,000 for more than 55,000 small businesses…In addition, our budget calls for reducing the tax burden on all of Maryland’s retirees. This includes more than $1 billion in tax cuts to help every single retired Marylander, making it more affordable for people to stay and retire here in Maryland.”
Hogan elaborated on that point.
“Even though we are one of the best places to live in America and we have so many great things going for us-we are losing many of our best citizens. People who have been life-long Marylanders and have contributed so much and still have more to offer are moving to other states for one reason: our state’s sky-high retirement taxes.”
Hogan summarized some of the other key investments in the budget proposal. They include:
-$7.5 billion for K-12 education
– $833 million for new school construction
– $151 million for targeted tutoring grants
– $53 million to expand pre-kindergarten
– $1 billion for road and highway development
– $1 billion for mass transit projects
– Fully fund Chesapeake Bay restoration efforts and Project Open Space
– $43 million for renewable energy programs
– $14 million for energy efficiency programs
Public Health and Safety:
– $74.6 million for police aid to local governments
– $43.7 million for local law enforcement grants
– $5 million for crime prevention and witness protection in Baltimore City
– $250 million for youth care and juvenile crime prevention programs
– $978 million for mental health and substance abuse programs
Hogan said the budget will also prioritize investments aimed at fighting COVID-19.
“This budget supports our ongoing response to the pandemic and ensures Marylanders continue to have access to health services: increasing funding for local health departments well above their grant formulas, fully funding and accelerating health care provider rate increases, expanding resources for developmental disability services and expanding programs to provide in-home care for the elderly.”
Hogan touted the budget proposal as fiscally balanced and said it will be funded without any tax increases.