MEET THE SENATOR PRIORITIES HOT ON THE HILL CONTACT HOME

View District
Read news
Read legislation
View slide show
Click here to signup
  
Cast your vote now...

Press Releases
Press Release- Reserve Funding Comes Through For Western Massachusetts: FY 2008 "Pothole" Grants for School Districts Disbursed Statewide
August 22, 2007

Pittsfield- State Senator Benjamin B. Downing (D-Pittsfield) and State Representatives Stephen Kulik (D-Worthington), William “Smitty” Pignatelli (D-Lenox) and Denis Guyer (D-Dalton) announce that the Department of Education has allotted the legislatively appropriated $5.5 million for Fiscal year 2008’s Foundation Reserve (“Pothole”) Program to school districts statewide, $666,000 of which has been funneled to thirteen communities and school districts in Berkshire, Hampshire and Franklin counties.

 

“These annual grants provide much needed relief to cities, towns and school districts across the Commonwealth,” stated Downing.  “This funding will provides the tools needed to support and strengthen our education system.”

 

This funding, provided by the Massachusetts Legislature annually through the Commonwealth’s General Appropriations Act, provides financial relief to municipalities and school districts.  These one-time grants supplement unique funding gaps and help pay for schools. 

 

Two of the largest grants in western Massachusetts went to Mohawk Trail receiving $200,000 and Gateway Regional School District receiving $130,000.  These districts were chosen because of the unique funding challenges they face as rural districts experiencing declining enrollment.  Other local districts benefiting from pothole assistance include New Marlborough receiving $84,000, Egremont receiving $59,000 and Monterey receiving $34,000.

 

“This important grant will help the Gateway Regional District deliver quality educational services throughout its sprawling 7-town region” said Kulik.  “Rural school districts face special challenges with relatively few students and high operating costs, and the pothole grant helps address this problem with additional state funds.”

 

“With annual shortfalls in the Chapter 70 funding formula- the Commonwealth’s central mechanism for funding public education- this pothole funding is critical for the schools South County and across Massachusetts,” stated Pignatelli.

 

“Regional school districts have been under siege and strained because of declining enrollment.  I am happy to see that DOE, Governor Patrick and the Legislature have worked with the “Pothole” formula to extend much needed supplemental funding to these communities and school districts,” stated Guyer.

 

Municipalities and districts seeking Pothole funding must follow the grant application guidelines established by the Massachusetts Department of Education.  For more information on pothole funding, visit: http://finance1.doe.mass.edu/chapter70/found08_instr.html.

 

Details for the thirteen school districts located in the Berkshire, Hampshire & Franklin Senate District receiving Foundation Reserve funds in FY 2008 are below:

 

FY08 Foundation Reserve Program

 

 

 

Category B

 

Extraordinary increases in minimum required local contribution to an individual district

 

CHARLEMONT                  

5,000

CHESTERFIELD                

10,000

PLAINFIELD                  

4,000

 

 

Category C

 

Increases in assessments to regional districts due to shift to statutory assessment formula

 

EGREMONT                    

59,000

MONTEREY                    

34,000

NEW MARLBOROUGH             

84,000

 

 

Category D

 

Relief for municipalities affected by stresses in the commercial agriculture and fishing industries

 

WILLIAMSBURG

5,000

 

 

Category F

 

Assistance for regional districts in rural areas with declining enrollment

 

GATEWAY                     

130,000

HAWLEMONT              

24,000

MOHAWK TRAIL                

200,000

 

 

Category G

 

Assistance for districts with enrollment declines and drop-out prevention programs in partnership with public higher ed

 

HAMPSHIRE                  

17,000

 

 

Category H

 

Assistance for municipalities with low per capita incomes and high property values

 

SHEFFIELD        

32,000

 

 

Category J

 

Assistance for districts with declining enrollment and low chapter 70 aid

 

FRANKLIN COUNTY              

58,000

 

###



Back

Meet Senator Downing | Priorities | Legislation
Contact | Email Updates | Slide Shows | In the News
 
This website is the official policy and constituent service website of Massachusetts State Senator Benjamin B. Downing.
It is maintained by the Office of Senator Downing. Web hosting has not been paid for at taxpayer expense.
Copyright 2006. All rights reserved.

Designed by Agency BCM