ACLU Pushes For Tax Increases To Fund Schools

BALTIMORE (WJZ) — There is talk of tax increases in Baltimore and it’s coming from the ACLU.  They say the sales tax and the meal-beverage tax need to go up to help fix city schools.

Kai Jackson explains close to $3 billion is needed.

The ACLU already outlined its vision for Baltimore City schools.  Now the organization says it has come up with a plan to pay for it.

Baltimore City schools are in dire need of help.  Many buildings are old and in need of repair or, in some cases, new schools are needed altogether.

“We think they’re in very poor condition,” said Bebe Verdery, ACLU Maryland.

The ACLU Maryland already gave an outline of the problem and its vision to fix city schools.  Now the Maryland Budget and Tax Policy Institute has a plan to pay for it.

The school system estimates it will cost $2.8 billion to fix, upgrade or even build new schools.  To pay for it, the ACLU proposes a one percent sales tax and a one percent meal and beverage tax in the city.  Revenue from slot machines in Baltimore,  if that ever happens, would also help fund schools.  Increased state funding is also proposed.

A spokesperson for the mayor issued a statement, saying, “The mayor’s task force on school construction will review and fully examine the recommendations as part of the effort.”

Wealthier jurisdictions like Montgomery, Prince George’s, Howard and Baltimore counties have more money to spend on school construction.


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