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Board Approves Hogan’s Proposed Spending Cuts

November 2nd, 2016 by WCBC Radio

The Board of Public Works has approved $82 million in cuts and spending transfers to help address a Maryland budget shortfall.

Gov. Larry Hogan, who chairs the three-member board, requested the cuts to avoid a shortfall of up to $250 million.  

Wednesday's vote was unanimous. Comptroller Peter Franchot, who sits on the board, said these cuts are smaller than the cuts approved during Gov. Martin O'Malley's administration, when the state faced larger budget shortfalls caused in the recession of 2008.

The cuts include $20 million to Medicare funding, which will be offset by cigarette restitution funds. Another $18 million will be cut from the University System of Maryland, in part through abolishing 60 vacant positions and 41 filled positions. USM Chancellor Robert Caret told the board that the filled positions are being eliminated through early retirements.

The proposal also shaves $4 million for the Sellinger Program for independent, nonprofit colleges and another $4 million in disparity grants to local governments.

Hogan says the cuts should send a signal to lawmakers to be disciplined in proposing spending increases in crafting next year's budget.  

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